Buying a new home often means moving to a new suburb or city. The change of location is often due to work relocation or for personal reasons. Whatever the reason for your move, it can be a little daunting finding the best ways to get to know the neighbourhood and have it start feeling like home.
Here are a few ideas to help break the ice:
ASK THE EXPERTS: A good place to start finding out what’s good in your new neighbourhood is to ask the real estate agent you purchased from. In the course of buying you would have talked to them about the big things like nearby schools, or transport routes. But they’re also a great resource to ask about everything from finding the best coffee and great parks and playgrounds, to the best local shops and restaurants.
HOOK YOURSELF UP: Spend some time finding and reading local newsletters, newspapers, community Facebook groups and supermarket community noticeboards. They’re a great place to find out about local events, organisations in need of volunteers, or even ongoing projects such as community gardens and working bees; all great places to meet people and start getting involved.
WALK THE WALK: Spend a weekend or two getting lost. Take to the streets on foot and just wander around. You’ll see much more than you would from the car, and be more likely to uncover the neighbourhood’s hidden gems – and you’ll quickly get your bearings for where everything is. If you’re in a large city you don’t know, you should do the same in your car, and you’ll quickly learn the best driving routes and how all the suburbs fit together.
TALK THE TALK: While you’re walking, stop and have a chat or even just a passing “hello” to any of your neighbours you come across out and about or working in their garden. It’s a relaxed way to break the ice. Once you’ve found that great café, make it your regular and get chatting to the staff, or strike up a conversation with local shop owners. Once you start finding a few local favourites you’ll start to meet some of the same faces each visit.
BE SEEN: Instead of heading next door to meet the neighbours, just be visible and approachable in and around your property. If you’re mowing the lawns or gardening in the front garden, just be aware of who’s around and give them a wave and a hello.
KNOCK ON THE FRONT DOOR: The best way to meet people is the most direct. It can be a little intimidating but it is a great way to meet your neighbours, especially those closest who you’ll see most often. If you want an icebreaker, take them a small gift like a cake, or invite them over for a drink.
AFTER SCHOOL: If you have school-aged children, get involved in school activities, sports and events. It’s a great way to help your kids settle in and you’ll quickly become part of the school community. The same is true for sports clubs.
For any of your real estate needs, contact your local professional, Harcourts The Property People on 4628 7444.