How to Introduce Yourself to New Neighbors & Social Distance at the Same Time
Moving to a new home can always be intimidating, especially if you are moving with children. It is hard to start over again in a new neighborhood, but COVID-19 has made it even more difficult since now stepping too close to a neighbor could be considered offensive. So how do you learn about the neighbors while looking for homes for sale and then assimilate once you choose one? Here are just a few helpful tips.
Make Use of Your Front Porch
SmartBox recommends spending some time on your front porch, which isn't a bad idea at all. When you were browsing new homes for sale, do you remember how much the front of the home’s curb appeal mattered? Now is the time to put it to use. As the weather warms, you can sit on the front porch with the kids and safely wave hello at your neighbors from a distance. Many will likely stop introducing themselves from the sidewalk, allowing you to maintain a comfortable distance while casually learning more about your neighbors, who have kids, who have dogs, and who are friendly (or not).
Send Out Personalized Notes
Gone are the days when you could knock on your neighbor's doors and introduce yourself, and there is a perfect chance that they aren't going to be knocking on your door either, thanks to the global health crisis. However, when purchased a new home, you also invest in the neighborhood, and the people are going to be part of your life for a significant period. Start on the right foot by introducing yourself. Take a minute to jot down a personal note to your immediate neighbors across the street and next door. Let them know you are the new homeowner and describe your family to them. Now that you have broken the ice, next time you see them out, and about there is a good chance they will stop what they are doing to return the favor (from a safe distance).
Look for Local Online Groups
These days everything is online, and neighborhood groups often are as well. Many neighborhoods and HOA's have a local Facebook group with residents who can talk to each other about subdivision issues or keep an eye out for each other collectively. Nextdoor, Facebook and Ring are all great places to find neighborhood groups. Chatting with neighbors virtually is a great way to get to know each other so that next time you pass each other on a walk, you both feel more comfortable chatting.
Move Your Games into the Front Yard
Similar to the porch tip, consider moving your backyard games into the front yard, where you will be more visible to your neighbors. Outdoors there is plenty of space to chat with neighbors from six feet or more, but you have to be accessible for these conversations to occur. Encourage your kids to ride their bikes daily as a way to see the neighborhood kids who may also be riding by. Consider running soccer drills in the front yard so you can chat with neighbors who pass by. You might even sharpen your gardening skills. Curious neighbors will comment on your efforts, and you will improve your landscaping, allowing you to kill two birds with one stone.