Boost your home's value: be a good neighbor

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Boost your home's value: be a good neighbor

Postby RICKLEE » Fri Jul 17, 2009 7:12 am

In my humble neighborhood, we are blessed by the initiatives of a higher than normal proportion of good neighbors. To my left and right, across my street, and down the next road, I can name a lot of people my family have come to know personally.

We help each other in times of practical need. We provide meals when we knew one is sick. We ask how family members are doing. My young daughter walks up to all of them and says hi by name. When a new neighbor moves in, we go over and say hi and ask to know their names.

I have a friend who lives in one of the most sought after and expensive neighborhoods of Toronto. She does not know her neighbors. When she moved in, she got stares from her wealthy neighbors, but no friendly hellos. Three years later and she still feels like a stranger.

I have come to conclude that being a good neighbor provides great living value every day, which for me is more desirable than property value, which helps only when I sell.

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Postby Fiscal Fizzle » Fri Jul 17, 2009 6:35 pm

Neighborhoods like yours are hard to come by and their value is immeasurable in terms of money. More often than not, they are not in the higher price ranges. From experience in my own area, homes can be found in the $100K-$300K that fit this criteria.

But as you point out - the value of being part of a community, not just a neighborhood, is something that goes far toward life fulfillment. It's one of the reasons I despise gated communities. And also why I will buy in exactly the type of community you're talking about...
Wojciech Kulicki
Fiscal Fizzle, Personal Finance Blog

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Postby nesterenes » Wed Jul 22, 2009 10:16 am

Unfortunately, neighborhood friendliness in an intangible benefit, albeit critical to long term happiness. Generally topics like this can only be discovered through casual conversation with parties who live there. I.E. Home-Seller "Gosh, I'll really miss the Browns down the road."

Too bad online real estate searches don't have a "friendly neighborhood rating". Something for them to work on!

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Postby ElizabethAnn » Fri Jul 24, 2009 12:09 pm

I just moved and so far only one neighbor has come by to say hello. One neighbor has stared at me, and another neighbor zoomed by me in her car. :cry:

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Postby VaL » Sun Jul 26, 2009 8:29 am

I think sometimes people are afraid to make connections with their neighbours. Maybe they feel they might end up falling out or disagreeing about something and then you're stuck living next to someone you dislike rather than someone you don't really know. I think it's worth the risk though. It's just so different now than when I was growing up and all the neighbours were so friendly and would invite you in for drinks and a chat. It felt like you were part of a little community; I guess that's what it was, really.

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Postby Sam » Tue Aug 04, 2009 6:47 am

We've been our neighborhood for 4-5 years and we got to know the folks on our block very well after going through 4 hurricanes after we moved in. We helped folks clean up, dealt with the lack of power for two-three weeks by spending a lot of time outside.

Also, we got involved in our neighborhood association and we have hosted meetings and events at our house and volunterred to hand out newsletters. it would be great for people to reach out to new folks but the new folks should also make an effort to get involved.
(Follow Sam's financial and real estate adventures.)

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Postby CTBoss » Sun Aug 09, 2009 8:12 pm

I moved into a not so nice neighborhood with my girlfriend in a big city. There was a large amount of gang activity on the block we lived. We didn't know this when we moved in. There were several shootings and murders within a few block, although all gang related. About a month in we adopted a dog from a family member and within another month I had gotten to know many of the other dog owners in the neighborhood due to their being a large park a few blocks south. After 6 months I had regular friends that I would have conversations with every day.We even met some other young couples that we then became friends with.

We found out that the gangs didn't care about the average person and that the neighborhood was full of very nice, hard working immigrants. The gangs and homeless were only a visual problem. An extreme example of how being nice to your neighbors works out.

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Postby Sr Ken » Fri Aug 21, 2009 6:09 am

The trend to impersonal neighborhoods may have started as families came to have dual income earners and got so busy running around. Retired 10 years and living in a condo everyone knows everyone and we are a bit like family here.

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Postby connor_zen » Sun Jan 10, 2010 1:18 am

Some pretty good tips about how to be a good neighbor:
Chris Connor
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Postby pdxrocks » Sun Jan 10, 2010 10:30 am

I know this was bumped because of spam, but it's something I've been thinking about a lot. We're in the process of buying a house in what looks like it could be a good, friendly neighborhood. We've been renting a house in a very upscale neighborhood, and although we've met several of the neighbors, they all seem pretty aloof... it's hard to imagine being friendly with them. This may be due to our status as renters, though.

My goal for the new house is to throw a no-gift housewarming party within a month of the move, and invite our neighbors in addition to our friends in the area. It seems like that would be a nice gesture and opportunity to say more than "hi" to them, and of course they'll want to come and ogle the new neighbor's taste in furniture. :D

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