Marianne Avila - Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Verani Realty



Posted by Marianne Avila on 1/17/2021

Photo by Ricarda Mölck via Pixabay

Moving to a new neighborhood brings with it, well, the new neighbors. Although you may be an exceptionally private person — others, by nature, are naturally curious. They want to know who’s moved in next door. This is particularly true when your house is just a few feet or a few inches away from their house. Sometimes, your window looks right out on their window — and vice versa. When it comes to nosy neighbors, follow these tips.

Be Proactive

Introduce yourself and satisfy their curiosity about your basic information. Without getting too personal, let them know who is living in the house with you and if you moved into the neighborhood for a specific reason.

Be Prepared

Many neighborhoods have a neighborhood watch. If this is the case, meet the people that look out for strangers so that they know who you are. Ask them questions too so that you know what kinds of things trigger a response from the watch or from other neighbors. If your neighborhood has an association, ask about it and meet the officers.

Be Courteous

People that live in one place for an exceptionally long time may fear change. Let them know you hope to love the neighborhood as much as they do. If their questions bother you, deflect and redirect the conversation.

Be Inventive

Builders don’t always pay attention to how one house aligns with another. If your neighbor’s dining room overlooks your bathroom, cover your bathroom windows with a frosted or stained-glass overlay. It’s a simple fix that lets daylight shine in your bathroom without the neighbors peering in, even accidentally. If it’s a bedroom window, cellular blinds let light in but give full coverage.

Be Friendly

When the opportunity arises, invite your neighbor for a cup of tea or simply to share a conversation while you weed the flowerbed. Friendliness goes a long way toward increasing everyone’s comfort level as new neighbors. Moving into a new neighborhood is a time of adjustment for both the old neighbors and the new. 

If you’re proactive, prepared, courteous, inventive and friendly, you’ll soon move from being merely neighbors to being friends. Your real estate professional is a great resource on learning about your neighborhood too, so ask them what they know.




Tags: community   neighbors  
Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by Marianne Avila on 1/3/2021

Photo by PixaBay via Pexels

Even if you find the perfect home on the ideal property, if you do not jibe with your neighbors, your homeownership experience could be in jeopardy. Thankfully, there are ways to make sure that your neighbors and you will get along well before committing to buy. All you have to do is follow these steps to see if the community will be all that you hoped and more.  

Visit the Neighborhood at All Hours

When looking for a home to buy, you will undoubtedly swing by for the open house or to take a tour, but your visits should not stop there. To really get a feel for the neighborhood dynamics, you have to visit at various times of the day and into the evening hours. And if your initial visit was on a weekday, make a weekend visit a top priority as well. When everyone is home from work and school, the neighborhood will likely come alive with activity, showing you just what to expect while living there.

Take a Walk & Have a Chat

During your visits, do not just drive through and call it good, as that may tell you little about the community at large. Instead, park your car and go for a long walk through the neighborhood, taking in all the sights and sounds. As you move down the sidewalk, keep your eyes open for opportunities to say hello and chat with your future neighbors. As you encounter friendly residents, ask them what they love about living there — and what they might change, given the chance.

Join Online Community Groups

After visiting your future neighbors in person, you can go one step further by taking an in-depth look into the neighborhood by joining online community groups. To do so, go on your favorite social media platform and search for groups made by community members in your desired city. Join a few and introduce yourself to start learning about all the different aspects of that neighborhood. If you feel comfortable, create posts asking for input about the things that are most important to you, like schools, events, and crime rates.  

Talk to Your Real Estate Agent

Real estate agents are always happy to help you find the neighborhoods that suit your ideal living experience best. Using their wealth of knowledge, they can help you pinpoint dog-friendly neighborhoods, for example, or find ones with a quieter atmosphere. All you have to do is let them know your ideal community dynamics, along with what you want to avoid, and they will guide the way to your perfect neighborhood.

When you use these tactics to vet your future neighbors, you will quickly find the locations that are most likely to offer your ideal living experience. Then, you can dive into the search with confidence you are looking in all the right areas for your dream home.




Tags: community   neighbors   new home  
Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by Marianne Avila on 3/4/2018

???Robert Frost's poem, Mending Wall, poses an interesting question about whether "good fences make good neighbors."

On one hand, there are several advantages to having your property surrounded by a fence, especially if you or your neighbors have dogs or small children running around.

If you happen to have a vegetable garden or fruit trees in your backyard, a well-constructed fence can also help keep out ravenous deer, rabbits, raccoons, skunks, foxes, and other wildlife.

There's no doubt that fences can serve a variety of useful purposes, ranging from privacy and safety to wildlife control and home security. While it can be beneficial to mark off your property boundaries and keep your backyard private, a question to consider is whether a large fence -- especially a new one -- sends the wrong message to your neighbors.  Striking the perfect balance between privacy and friendly neighbor relations can be tricky at times, but there are compelling reasons to stay on good terms.

  1. Security reasons: If you take the time to chat with your neighbors every now and then, they'll have more of a tendency to keep an eye on your property when you're on vacation or just away for the day -- especially if you ask them.  People tend to be more helpful, observant, and protective of others with whom they share a bond or have a sense of community. In contrast to that, if they don't even know your name and haven't exchanged more than a few words with you in years, they'll be less inclined to pay attention to who's on your property and whether they belong there or not.
  2. Sharing resources: Keeping the lines of communication open with your neighbors is beneficial on many levels. When you have a friendly, ongoing relationship, you won't feel reluctant to ask them for help when your car battery's dead and you're running late for work. Trusted neighbors can also provide you with valuable information, such the names of dependable home improvement contractors or how to arrange a free pickup of household clutter that you want to donate to the Salvation Army.
  3. Quality of life: When you're regularly greeted by friendly neighbors, your neighborhood will feel like more of a welcoming and upbeat place to live. It may be necessary for you to set the example or make the first move, but once a friendly atmosphere has been created in a neighborhood, it's relatively easy to keep it going.

So while you may not want your neighbors to get in the habit of stopping by your home to chew the fat, every day, it can be worth your while to greet them by name, offer help whenever possible, and be the kind of good neighbor you'd like them to be. Setting a positive example may be all that's needed to establish a cooperative relationship and possibly even a life-long friendship. And, if all else fails, keep in mind the words of Benjamin Franklin: "Love thy neighbor, but don't pull down your hedge!"





Posted by Marianne Avila on 1/29/2017

In a world where we do much of our socializing online and can talk to people around the world in an instant it has become less incentivized to have a relationship with your neighbors. However, there are man benefits to having a tight-knit neighborhood that are sadly being forgotten. Some people are private by nature and like to keep to themselves, which is certainly okay. Others like to be involved members of their communities, getting to know the people who live around them and taking an interest in their well-being. Have you ever wished that your neighborhood had more things for your kids to do? Or maybe that you had a few friends next door to have cookouts with in the summer time? In this article we'll talk about the many ways you can build a community in your neighborhood to get your friends and neighbors more involved.

Start a community garden

Is there a lot or patch on land in your neighborhood that is going unused? A great project to start that can benefit the neighborhood is to create a community garden. Gardening with others is a rewarding activity. You'll be busy working so you won't have to worry about awkward silences, and you will all share in the great rewards of seeing your creation grow. Here's how to start:
  • Get permission for using the land, unless you own it
  • Pass out flyers and post on Facebook to the people in your neighborhood to let them know about it.
  • Add on the flyer that it would be appreciated if people brought some tools and supplies along which you can also list on the flyer
  • Have a "breaking soil" day when your neighborhood comes out to commence work in the garden
  • Before long, word of mouth and curious passersby will make your garden a popular place to hang out in the neighborhood

Host an outdoor movie night

It's easier than ever to screen a movie outside. All you need is a laptop, some decent speakers, a projector, and a white sheet to hang against a wall. Just like with the garden, pass out flyers. And, be sure to choose a kid-friendly movie that people can bring the family to.

Start a neighborhood book club and book swap

Books are great icebreakers. You won't have to worry about having nothing to talk about because you'll have all the material from the books to discuss. Once you get a few people in the neighborhood to join the club, you might think about creating a neighborhood book swap. Take an outdoor cabinet and put it on your front lawn with a sign says "Take a book, leave a book." Then get some of your neighbors to join in as well.

Spend time outside and go for neighborhood walks

Just by spending more time in the front yard and taking nightly walks you'd be surprised at home many new members of your neighborhood you'll meet. Instead of hiding your benches in the backyard, put them in the front and remember to say "Hello!" to your neighbors when they pass by.  







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