Cangiano Estates, Ltd.
Jennifer Gordon, Cangiano Estates, Ltd.Phone: (917) 771-3290
Email: [email protected]

What to do With not-no-Great Neighbors

by Jennifer Gordon 04/14/2019

When shopping for your new home, you can investigate and gauge many things about the house itself and even about the neighborhood as a whole to help make the best decision. One thing that's difficult to gauge or even factor into your decision making is your immediate neighbors. You might be able to look at their yard to see how they care for their home, or you might be able to tell right away if they have a loud animal, but you won't know them until after you've moved in and have lived in the new house for a while. Even if you could know ahead of time if they have noisy barbecues or a teenager with an aspiring rock band should that play into your decision? Your initial neighbors might decide to sell their home, or they might actually be renters, so you have no idea how long they'll be there. While getting a read on the community as a whole is essential—do people generally seem to care about their homes, are their clean streets and shared areas, etc.—you shouldn't refrain from buying the best house for you because you're concerned about your neighbors.

So, what to do if you move into your new home and it turns out your immediate neighbors aren’t so great?

If you find that your neighbor doesn’t do much upkeep on their front yard, there isn’t a whole lot you can do. If you see them when you're out mowing or weed-eating, you can offer to do theirs as well, as a friendly neighbor, but you can't go much farther than that. If their backyard has a lot of trash or messy kids toys or even a few old cars they haven't gotten around to working on you can do some things to keep their unsightly belongings from affecting an afternoon on your back patio.

  • Privacy fencing: If your home didn't have privacy fencing when you made the purchase, consider installing a new fence. There are affordable ways to implement privacy fencing that will create a visual barrier between you and your neighbor. Bonus — if they have a dog that likes to bark at anything it sees, or it just doesn't get along with your dog, the fencing will help prevent unwanted barking and extra noise.
  • Plant trees or bamboo: It’s a bit costlier but installing a line of medium-sized trees that grow tall (and quickly) or installing a second layer of "fencing" with a row of bamboo will increase the visual and sound barriers in addition to improving the beautiful greenery in your yard.
  • Direct attention away: If your yard is big enough to have a couple of different living areas try placing those areas on the opposite side of the yard from your neighbors and direct attention to your useable space. Install a gazebo in the back corner or hang a shade awning over the patio. Circle furniture up around a built-in BBQ facing away from the other yard. Light up the areas you use with string lights or tiki torches and leave the view along the less than desirable fence line darkened.
  • Outdoor Sound System: It's tempting to overpower your neighbor's loud music, but you can install an outdoor sound system that focuses on the entertaining and living areas of your yard to create more of a sound barrier between their loud music, dogs or children. Kind of like how restaurants use loud music to give each table privacy, you can give yourself a bit of privacy, and peace with strategically installed speakers. 

Finally, be a good neighbor. The primary key to having good neighbors is to be one. Be friendly, be open and be inviting. Follow the same considerate living principles you desire from your neighbors. Engage with your neighbors and become acquaintances or even friends. Who knows, the dad next door with the son who wants to learn death metal might need a break from the noise too, and could be the best new addition to your guys night.

If you're not exactly sure how to approach an issue with your new living arrangement, speak with your real estate professional for the best advice.

About the Author
Author

Jennifer Gordon

A Staten Island Realtor since 1998, Jennifer earned her NYS Associate Broker license in 2006, and has established herself with an impressive selling record while maintaining a reputation for providing personal attention, quality service, and above all, for her integrity. An active and involved member of the Staten Island Board of Realtors (SIBOR) and the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), Jennifer has served as Chair of the Technology Committee, as a member of the MLS Vendor Task Force, the MLS Transition Committee, the Legal Liaison Task Force, the Young Professionals Network, the Attorney Interaction Task Force, the Grievance Committee, the Installation Committee, the Agent Day & Trade Show Committee,the SIBOR 100th Year Gala Committee and currently reappointed a fourth year on the Professional Standards Committee. Jennifer is also a member of the National Association of Realtors, a member of the New York State Association of Realtors, and she has been a licensed New York Notary Public since 2002, a service she happily offers to all for free.

Jennifer began working in Staten Island real estate part time, nights and weekends, while simultaneously studying for her Bachelor’s Degree at the College of Staten Island and working full time at Staten Island Academy, a private-independent school, as secretary to the Headmaster. Six months later,after successfully selling several homes, Jennifer resigned from the Academy so she could focus her attention on real estate full time – a life-changing and rewarding transition she has never regretted. Earning her Bachelor’s Degree in psychology has well-equipped her to successfully work with various personality types. Jennifer was recognized as the very first student at the College of Staten Island to minor in developmental disabilities and her internship and focus was on autism. Jennifer has volunteered and raised money to bring awareness and resources to the autistic community and she is a concerned supporter of quality future housing for autistic adults. Jennifer has always found pleasure in helping people; right out of Tottenville High School, she worked as an intake counselor at Project Hospitality where she helped serve Staten Island’s homeless population. Now a Realtor, she says that “helping families while earning a living is a winning combination.”

A proud Staten Island resident since 1978, Jennifer became a first time homeowner in 2003 and again in 2009. The experiences gave her valuable insight and made her a better Realtor. Jennifer’s two beautiful children are top students at their schools and are enthusiastically involved in community and charitable events. Both have added cherished perspective to family life and have helped provide an important understanding of and respect for working parents looking to make their next move.

Personal Attention

A great listener with a good attitude, Jennifer has the ability to focus her attention on the needs of her clients, whether they be buyers, sellers,landlords, or tenants. Many have said they have made Jennifer their Realtor“for life” and confidently refer to her their closest friends and family members. Continued education, community involvement, immersed in a brilliant network of business professionals and lovingly supported by understanding family and friends help keep Jennifer ahead of the rest.

Quality Service

Jennifer’s wide range of marketing techniques insures her clients the utmost exposure from, among other things, social media and online marketing,professional photographs, virtual tours, detailed direct mailings, informative open houses, custom-printed color brochures, and extensive publication advertising. 

Integrity

Honesty, good character, fairness, sincerity, and trustworthiness are words her clients use to describe Jennifer. She is a trusted first choice, guaranteeing the most effective marketing, negotiating the most favorable terms and conditions, and communicating well with all involved parties to make the process as smooth and enjoyable as possible. Most importantly, Jennifer’s integrity is intact at all times along with a healthy dose of natural tenacity.

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