Being a good neighbour flows from the golden rule: Treat others as you’d like to be treated!
The peace of mind that comes with knowing you are surrounded by people who are there for you is priceless.
Make sure you are a behaving like a good neighbor by displaying the following characteristics:
Get to know your neighbors – introduce yourself right after you move in. They don’t have to be your best friends, but occasionally say “Hi” and ask how they are doing.
Keep it down – apartment walls are notoriously thin. Keep the decibel levels reasonable especially your bass, as it tends to travel treacherously more than the actual volume. Also, you don’t want to give your neighbors a play-by-play of your life. Avoid stomping on stairwells in the early mornings on your way to work or coming back late at night. Close doors behind you with ease. Main building and apartment doors create a lot of noise. Don’t let them slam or shut by themselves.
The hallway is not an extension of your apartment – don’t let any of your belongings overflow into the building’s common space. The hallway isn’t some sparsely decorated extension of your own personal apartment, your kids should not be having play dates, soccer games or mini golf tournaments there. This creates noise that will infiltrate others’ apartments and most importantly it’s a violation of the City Fire code.
If you have an issue, please talk to your neighbor about it – while leaving a note on their door seems easier than dealing with a neighbor face to face, it can also send the wrong message – your neighbor might not understand your tone. Calmly and politely discuss concerns with your neighbors as soon as they arise and before they escalate into larger issues or inform your Resident Manager, you will always remain anonymous and they can intervene on your behalf!
Your pooch has to be a good neighbor too. Your pet maybe your source of inspiration and comfort, but remember, others may not share the same love for your animals. Always keep them on a leash, and clean-up after your pet, to avoid those love letters from your landlord! Barking dogs can upset neighbours, consider doggy day care in the first days after moving while they try to acclimatize to their new home.
Park like a champ and drive slow and careful in the parking lot. Needless to say park in between those yellow lines and most importantly in your designated spot. Inform your ride to call/text instead of honking while waiting for you in the lot.
Avoid laundry wars by not hogging the machines for too long after your wash and sticking to the outlined usage times – we have seen a lot of casualties in this war.
Ask any questions regarding smoking with the Resident Manager. Even if it’s allowed inside your suite be respectful of your neighbors and make sure that the area is completely ventilated with the windows and vents open. Properly discard cigarette butts in your own trash; do not fling them off of the balcony.
Do not adopt discarded furniture. One of our tenants decided to give a sidewalk futon a good home … well the futon came with some unwanted guests as well – bedbugs. The results were predictable. Everyone on the southern end of the building was infested.
Part of being a good neighbour is recognizing that everyone messes up sometimes. If the gaffe is yours, correct it and move on. If it’s someone else’s, let them know politely, then forgive and forget (unless they bring bedbugs).
Peaceful, harmonious apartment living is all about treating others with respect and consideration. When you do, it’s amazing how many people will respond in kind.
Do you have any pointers to add to this list?
Mainstreet Equity Corp. is a publicly traded (TSX: MEQ) residential real estate company in Canada. Mainstreet currently owns and operates properties in Surrey, BC; New Westminster, BC; Abbotsford, BC; Calgary, AB; Cochrane, AB; Lethbridge, AB; Edmonton, AB; Fort Saskatchewan, AB; and Saskatoon, SK.
Mainstreet provides affordable, renovated apartment suites to Canadians, and is committed to creating real value without diluting shareholder interests.
About the Author
Tawanda Nzara Regional Manager, Calgary
Tawanda is responsible for the day-to-day operations of Mainstreet's Calgary property portfolio.