Written by: Shani Fowler
Oooh there is someone new moving in at number 24! Are you the one stood behind the window twitching your curtains, vowing you will have as little to do with them as you do everyone else? Or are you running over armed with a beaming smile and a cup of sugar before they have even unpacked their first box?
Some people like to keep themselves to themselves, don’t want to bother with their neighbours beyond uttering the odd “good morning”, whilst others might want to get to know their neighbours well. It is each to their own, but there are advantages to having good mutual relationships with neighbours and knowing those who live around us.
Being friendly with neighbours can help protect your home. Neighbours are often familiar with your family’s comings and goings and are more likely to spot someone suspicious loitering around your property. Someone who knows and likes you will likely alert you or the necessary authorities to any suspicious activity.
Getting along with your neighbours can help protect you! This can be a God send – especially if you live by yourself. Imagine if something unthinkable happened where you were taken ill or fell and you couldn’t contact anyone. If a neighbour who normally sees you or pops by regularly notices something odd, they are likely to call on you and check whether you are okay.
Gaining entry quickly
Having a neighbour you trust can be priceless; you may be able to leave a spare key with them for emergencies. Imagine a gas leak or a flood has occurred whilst you are at work, out shopping or even away for a period of time. Any emergency would require someone to break in – but not if a neighbour has a key! They can allow safe and necessary access to your property.
If you have good neighbours they might be open to taking on a little responsibility if you have to be away. They may be open to looking after your plants or even low maintenance pets whilst you jet off to sunnier skies.
Sometime issues occur such as boundaries, noise and other problems. If you get along with neighbours it is easier to address and resolve any such issues, you might even agree to share costs in resolving any expensive problems too.
Neighbours can be good company and you can make great friends. If your neighbours have kids a similar age to your children, it is likely they will want to play with each other. It would be nice if everyone got along and the kids were entertaining each other too. Spending time with each other with maybe the odd barbecue in summer or a few nights down the local can create friendships and lifelong bonds – even if and when you ever move out of the area.
Take in your deliveries
Obviously it would be putting on your neighbours if you expected them to take in your online weekly supermarket shop, but if you order something online as many of us do, and you are not around to receive it, often a good neighbour will agree to take them in. This saves us riding round to the postal depot on a Saturday morning trying to track our parcels down!
Being neighbourly doesn’t mean you have to live in each other’s pockets but it is best to try to get on with them. It makes life much more pleasant if we interact well, but also it is a two way street. We need to be good neighbours in return. We need to remember too to look out for others and a special effort for those who are vulnerable such as the elderly and those who live alone. It makes life much happier and safer all round.