Six Characteristics of Good Neighbors

in Neighbors on by

When it comes to apartment living, you’ll soon discover the tell-tale signs of good neighbors. Ironically, those signs will likely come forth after dealing with your share of bad neighbors. Unsure where your neighbors stand? Here is a list of characteristics that make good neighbors:

1. Good Neighbors Are Friendly

A good neighbor is someone who is nice and approachable. No one says you have to be best friends with the person across the hall, but you should at least be able to smile and say hello to the person and receive some sort of friendly response, as opposed to a glare or simply being ignored. While the fact that someone is unfriendly or shy doesn’t automatically make him or her a bad neighbor, unapproachable neighbors make for a more uncomfortable and awkward living environment.

2. Good Neighbors Are Quiet

Anyone who has ever lived next to noisy neighbors can attest to this. Good neighbors are aware that there are other people living in the building and keep noise to a minimum. They don’t scream or blare music or throw parties until late hours in the evening. They don’t slam doors and yell in the hallways. They show some respect for those around them.

3. Good Neighbors Respect the Building

Anyone who leaves garbage or junk in the hallways, in the parking lot or in other common areas is not a good neighbor. A neighbor who allows his or her junk to accumulate in shared spaces shows disrespect for you and for everyone else in the building. Good neighbors show common courtesy and regularly take out their trash and keep shared and public areas clean.

4. Good Neighbors Handle Situations Maturely

If a good neighbor ever had a problem with you or something you were doing (say your dog has been barking a lot recently), he or she would kindly approach you about the matter. Likewise, if you ever had a problem with your neighbor, he or she would take into account your concerns. Everyone gets along better and problems are solved faster when people behave like mature adults. Bad neighbors don’t handle situations maturely. They ignore you, respond rudely or turn to passive aggressive retaliation methods. Good neighbors never behave that way.

5. Good Neighbors Help When and Where They Can

There isn’t a rule stating that good neighbors should lend a helping hand, but in general, they do. Good neighbors let you borrow a key to the downstairs laundry room when you’ve misplaced yours. Good neighbors will team up with you to speak with the landlord about a maintenance issue in the common stairwell. Ultimately, they’re looking to reside in a pleasant, friendly and safe environment, too.

6. Good Neighbors Are Trustworthy

You want to feel safe knowing packages, mail and items left behind in the laundry room will not be stolen. With good neighbors, you shouldn’t have to worry.

Ultimately, while you can choose where to live, you can’t choose your neighbors. Do your research before moving into a new apartment. Talk to current residents to get a sense of what the neighbors are like. Good neighbors will make a world of difference in how much you enjoy apartment living.


Rachael Weiner: I’m a communications professional for a non-profit, which financially necessitates my status as an apartment dweller. Constantly “on-the-go,” I’ve resided in five different apartments across the United States over the past five years. Roommate issues, budgeting, organizing and handling problem neighbors are my specialty.

One Response to “Six Characteristics of Good Neighbors”

  1. December 23, 2009 at 10:05 pm, The Art of Noise said:

    Great advice here!


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