When people live side by side with common walls, a small nuisance can become a big deal. This is especially true in Homeowner Associations (HOAs) where sights, smells, and sounds intrude into the tranquility of our own homes.
Being a good neighbor in an HOA means more than a friendly wave or a quick chat at the mailbox. Sharing property with your neighbors brings social interactions that most people would never predict or think about.
In honor of National Good Neighbor Day, let’s explore five things that people can do to boost the good neighbor factor.
1. Read and Follow the HOA Covenants
Be familiar with and follow your HOA covenants. Being a good neighbor is easier when everyone is playing by the same rule book.
2. Work Out Your Problems Face to Face
Our busy world consists of email, Facebook and texting—so we sometimes distance ourselves from actually communicating in person. But, in person is usually the best way to handle a disagreement. Sometimes all that’s needed is a non-confrontational face-to-face chat to solve the problems.
3. Reach Out to Your Neighbors
The old adage that you catch more flies with honey than vinegar is doubly true when engaging your neighbors. Take the time to offer a little assistance when it’s needed, learn different cultures, taste different foods, and explore different customs. Or offer a little help. You’re building goodwill that will help you when your own emergencies arise. Focus on being a good neighbor.
4. Offer Advance Solutions
If your child is having a slumber party, work with your neighbors to establish lights out time. And, most of us cook food that the smell permeates the air from time to time. Put yourself in your neighbor’s shoes – and open the windows to let some of the odor escape. You may also want to invite your neighbors to a taste testing — it’s a fun way to explore new foods, especially from other cultures.
5. Involve Yourself in Your Community
When you own co-joined property with, being a good neighbor means getting more involved in your community. As a member of the association, it’s your responsibility to stay involved in the neighborhood affairs. Pitch in where you can.
So, Love thy neighbor … or at least try to be a considerate one. By doing this, you and your neighbors will reap rewards for years to come.
Wise Property Solutions serves condominium and homeowners associations by addressing their financial, association and facilities management needs. The only certified and licensed community association management firm serving the Mountain South (Virginia, North & South Carolina, Tennessee) with offices in the Tri-Cities and Knoxville.
For more on being a good neighbor check out the CAI Rights and Responsibilities document here.