Moving to an unfamiliar area and being the proverbial “new kid on the block” can often be overwhelming. Connecting with your neighbors is a guaranteed way to make you feel more comfortable. Below are a few ways to help you get over the initial hump and become a familiar, friendly face within your neighborhood.
Yes, we know it’s old school, but it works! Take the initiative to knock on your neighbors’ doors and introduce yourself. Give them the basics—your name and cell phone number. You’d be surprised at how far a simple introduction can go. Don’t use this as an opportunity to invite yourself in unless they ask you to come inside.
Knocking is not always the best avenue right now with COVID-19. If knocking is not an option, try making cards with your name and number and leaving them in nearby mailboxes.
Sweeten them up
If the knocking tactic makes you a little uneasy, head next door with a tray of cookies. It’s a kind gesture and will help build long-standing relationships. Besides, who doesn’t love fresh-baked goods?
As a COVID-19 alternative, try packaging individual goods in individual baggies to ensure they feel comfortable taking one instead of reaching inside a tray or basket.
Be a gracious host
Whether it’s an extravagant get-together or a simple porch party, hosting an event is a great way to meet neighbors. Give them a one-week or two-week notice, and make sure that when the day comes, you have plenty of appetizers and drinks to go around.
Invite them to a virtual meeting or happy hour to get to know one another! Leave a card in their mailbox or if you already have their number, give them a meeting ID a week or so in advance and plan for some conversational topics or virtual games.
Play the cool parent
Kids can definitely help break the ice. If your neighbors have children that are around the same age as your own, arrange a playdate. Pop in a movie, and set out a few snacks—it doesn’t have to be elaborate. No kids? This technique also works well with pets!
Get rid of the old
After a move, a purge is necessary. Hosting a yard sale will not only allow you to get rid of excess items, but can also help you meet numerous neighbors at once. Many friendships have been created from rummaging through boxes of old china and toys.
Before you know it, your new house and neighborhood will start feeling more and more like home!