How to be an awesome neighbour
The people next door can be more than acquaintances - they can become friends, writes
When someone asks what makes an awesome neighbour, our response often revolves around what doesn’t.
‘‘Well, a good neighbour doesn’t rev their obnoxiously loud car at 6am, or mow their lawns at 8.45pm, or keep me up until 4.30am with their loud doof-doofdoof-ing,’’ we bemoan.
Neighbourly and Electric Kiwi are encouraging us to share stories about our Awesome Neighbours, which got me thinking about what actually makes one?
Frankly, it’s hard flipping the switch and only thinking about awesome attributes, particularly if the negative experiences outweigh the positives (I’m looking at you, Mr Evening Mower Man).
Having awesome neighbours doesn’t start with other people, it starts with us.
So what makes an awesome neighbour? First up, they’re friendly. A cheerful wave and a wide smile every time they pass each other at the letterbox is the perfect foundation for a great relationship between neighbours.
Starting off small breaks down boundaries, and before they know it they’re sharing gardening tips, telling you how you can save on your power, and inviting you over for a cuppa.
Consideration, particularly around noise, is a biggie. That’s not to say awesome neighbours don’t throw parties; they just give their neighbours a heads-up – perhaps even invite them along. Awesome neighbours minimise loud noises after hours (particularly when their neighbours have kids who probably go to bed at 7.30pm).
An awesome neighbour is sharing and selfless.
When they see their elderly neighbour limping to the letterbox they’re the first to lend a hand. They share the fruits from their overflowing lemon tree.
They offer up their lawn for other kids to let off some steam.
They become more in tune with what’s going on, so if something more serious occurs (like if the elderly neighbour stops visiting his letterbox), they’re more likely to notice and be able to help.
Finally, an awesome neighbour is more than an acquaintance; they’re a friend.
Just like you can’t choose your family, neighbours usually start their relationships off as a matter of necessity. But as with any relationship, the more you both work at it, the better it becomes.
Electric Kiwi and Neighbourly are asking us to share our stories about the best neighbours out there. Who’s yours? Got an awesome neighbour? Share a few words on Neighbourly for your chance to win $250 Prezzy cards. Visit www.neighbourly.co.nz/ awesomeneighbour
Awesome neighbours enjoy a chat but are considerate about when they mow their lawns.