|Written by Randall D Howard|
Take note when a "sold" sign is posted on the for sale sign of near by properties. A few weeks after this occurs, you'll probably notice activity around the house. No doubt these are the new home owners.
Observe as much as you can before approaching your new neighbors. Do they have children? Are they younger or older? If the auto license plates are out of state, no doubt these people will gladly welcome people offering a helping hand.
When you have made mental notes of the items just discussed, pick your time for the initial introduction. I prefer to give the new residents two or three days before I contact them. That gives me time to make my observations. Then I try to catch the new neighbors when the time appears convenient for both parties.
The first meeting should be just a brief introduction, or ice breaker. If you notice them walking their pet, or unloading boxes from cars, this can be a good time. Keep the intro short, just introduce yourself. Offering them any assistance if needed, such as borrowing small tools, will go a long way to creating an immediate bond.
After the new neighbors have been in the neighborhood for a couple of weeks, I like to follow up my initial visit with a small house warming gift.
A plant or possibly a food tray are always good choices. Plus, this is where those initial observations may come in handy. If they have small children, I like to add something for the kids, too. It doesn't have to be much, but a coloring book and crayons can win friends for life.