Are You a Valued Neighbor?

We all want our homes to be surrounded by a safe community, but not everyone is willing to put the time into creating a neighborhood they love.

When it comes to being a valued neighbor, you get what you give, and a strong, tight-knit community will only grow stronger, the more energy you put into it. It can be as simple as saying hello, or as involved as creating a community garden.

Here are six tips for establishing (or improving) your neighborhood community.

1. Hospitality

Whether you’re new to the neighborhood or a new family has recently moved in, it’s essential to say hello. Offer a welcome gift (homemade baked goods never fail), and ask for or give a little inside information about the neighborhood. How early in the morning does the garbage truck swing by? Where’s the best local pizza spot? Small insights make a big difference for newbies trying to get ahold of their new surroundings. It also builds rapport with your neighbors.

2. Small offering

Whenever possible offer up something small to your neighbor. A few homegrown tomatoes can make someone’s day. Offer to babysit for a few hours, or take their dogs out for a walk. No offering is too small when establishing a close community. Something that doesn’t seem like a big deal to you could mean a lot to a stay-at-home mom who has a newborn baby or a neighbor who is swamped transitioning into a new job.

3. Schedules

Exchanging schedules can remedy problems before they get started. Neighbors with young children probably need quiet nights, and people who work nights usually need quiet mornings. If you like to begin lawn work at 6 a.m. Saturday mornings or your son’s Monday night garage band practice goes past 9 p.m., let your neighbors know, and ask them to reach out if your schedule creates an issue.

4. Safety

Another benefit of a tight-knit community is neighbors keeping an eye out for anything or anyone suspicious in the neighborhood. But it never hurts to have that added level of safety with home security. And as bonus, we offer a discount on home insurance when you have a home security system installed.

5. Reach out

Communication is key. Even more so with neighbors. Touch base regularly, and keep them in the loop. Encourage your neighbor to contact you with any issues or questions. You know what they say: The phone works both ways.

6. Receive

When you’ve lived in a neighborhood for a long time and have your own routine and regular jobs, sometimes it’s hard to let new neighbors help. Remember part of building relationships is including everyone. If you usually mow the no-man’s land strip of grass leading into the neighborhood and notice someone else got to it first, make sure to say thank you, even if they didn’t do it exactly as you would. They were trying to help the neighborhood by pitching in.

Cheers to Neighbors!

If you keep showing up and reaching out to your neighbors, the sense of community will catch on, strengthening neighborhood ties while creating a more beautiful and safe place for your family. Madison Mutual is a big fan of safety and community. We would love to help foster stronger communities; please reach out if you know how we could help!

The essence of community is coming together. So reach out to your neighbors today. You might be surprised how many people welcome the connection.