It is often said that the most important factors when choosing a home to buy are “location, location, and location.” This axiom has become a worn-out cliché of the real estate industry, but it’s also very accurate.
When buying a home, savvy buyers will look to areas where values are improving, where school districts are good, and where parks and amenities are close by. Whether it is your first home or your dream home, finding the perfect property will involve some combination of these factors. Unfortunately, bad neighbors exist in every neighborhood and at every income level.
It doesn’t matter whether you live in a historic neighborhood, a brand new subdivision, or a gated community – bad neighbors can and do exist in many areas.
Signs of Bad Neighbors
One of the first signs of trouble with neighbors starts with the curb appeal of their house. A front yard with weeds, long grass, and un-trimmed plants and trees is a sign that regular maintenance is not being done on the house. A pile of newspapers in the driveway or trash piled at the curb weeks or months before the bulk trash pickup date looks unsightly as well. Items such as burglar bars over the front windows not only look unappealing, but can give an impression to passers-by that this is a rough or bad neighborhood.
Sometimes, bad neighbors will do things that annoy you as a homeowner, but are not expressly prohibited by the law. This may include frequently having parties or get-togethers, frequent yard sales, or having cars parked along the street constantly. Other examples include parking boats, trailers, recreational vehicles, or old junk cars on the side of their property. While it is irritating to see these items that never move, they may not be in violation of City Code – leaving you little recourse as a homeowner on the same street or block. The same goes for actions such as frequent outdoor grilling, or playing loud music/using power tools before the city’s noise restrictions are in effect.
Then there are things your neighbors might do that are in clear violation of local ordinances – incessant barking dogs, green swimming pools that are a breeding ground for mosquitoes, or trailers/vehicles parked in the front yard. Cars with expired license plates are often prohibited from on-street parking in many areas.
The Impact of Bad Neighbors
There are many ways that neighbors living in close proximity can get on each other’s nerves, from parking issues and noise complaints to unkempt yards and more. But what is the impact of these actions on the surrounding homes and their property values? As you might have guessed, a single “problem” home can impact the value of homes around it. A neighborhood with several problem homes can bring down property values in the entire area.
Bad neighbors are also a nuisance to live near, especially if your home is located directly next to or in front of their property. The issues of noise, appearance of their home, and issues related to parking can become frustrating in a hurry. This can reduce the desirability of your home to potential buyers, even if you are located in a prime area close to good schools, parks, and shopping centers.
What to Do about Bad Neighbors
When dealing with annoying neighbors, there is no guaranteed method of correcting their offending behavior. The first step should be talking to the neighbors about the issue, such as when they are getting their mail or walking their dog. You could kindly let them know that their junk car or messy front yard needs attention – and they may surprise you with a valid explanation such as a disability, injury, or financial hardship preventing them from resolving the issue.
If talking to the neighbors does not work, you may be able to report a City Code violation to your local town or municipality. Many local governments have a Code Enforcement unit that will conduct inspections and give fines for things like tall weeds, unregistered cars, and loud noises after a certain time (usually 9pm to 11pm in many areas).
As a final resort, you may consider moving houses to escape from bad neighbors. This is an extreme example, but many homeowners may feel they are out of options after dealing with irritating behavior from one or more neighbors. An obvious problem such as living next door to a hoarder house will present problems when selling the home through a traditional realtor.
Fortunately, there are companies such as BuyMyHome that will make a fast cash offer for your home, no matter what condition it is in. BuyMyHome specializes in helping homeowners escape the nightmare of a bad neighbor, without a lot of fuss. They have experienced experts who can take care of all of the closing costs and paperwork in record time compared to a traditional home selling process.
If you are fed up with your bad neighbors and want to see what your home might be worth, head over to BuyMyHome.com to get a fast cash offer today!