When you were a kid, there was nothing more exciting than new neighbours moving into the neighbourhood. You’d pop right over on your bike, hanging around the front on the street just waiting to catch a glimpse of any and all kids that might have moved into your ‘hood. It was the highlight of the year when you found new friends a few houses over. While that might have always worked when we were kids, it’s harder as adults to break the ice with other adults that are moving into the neighbours.
Here’s a few tips and tricks to try to break the ice and make new homeowners feel welcome in your neighbourhood!
1.Hang around with your kids outside. Yes, it works for adults too! We usually let the kids ride their kids while walking and taking and if we happen to bump into the new neighbours, the better. Take them for a walk when the new neighbours just happen to be outside and strike up a conversational when walking past.
2. Be traditional and take them food to welcome them to the neighbourhood. To up your odds of a happily received food gift, go with nut free, meat free choices. Chocolate chip cookies are always an amazing option and a good vegetarian lasagna is almost always welcome when families are busy moving in.
3. DON’T wander over right when they are moving in! Moving tops the list of the most stressful events in life, don’t add to it by wandering over and chatting up your neighbour who’s grunting and groaning while hauling in a desk.
4. DO give your new neighbours a few days and this applies to kids as well. As impatient as mine are to run right over and meet the new kids, we always talk to them about letting them settle into a new home. The new family needs time to unpack and settle in. That means kids are going to be busy helping with their rooms and don’t need distractions of neighbourhood children knocking at the door.
5. Have a block party. I’m always pestering people on my block to throw one and one day they’ll cave (or I’ll just plan the whole thing when I have time). I think it’s the best way for everyone to meet and chat while the kids run wild and play.
What are your suggestions for welcoming new neighbours?