RSS Feed

Category Archives: Neighbors

The “New Roof” Game

As a resident expert on neighborhood envy and the lengths people will go to just to “keep up,” we can’t forget about the “new roof” phenomenon. In addition to Christmas lights and landscaping, new roofs are one of the biggest ways the neighbors try to keep up with one another, and even show one another up, at times.

replacing-roofs-keeping-up-with-neighbors

Keep up with the Joneses through a new roof

Getting New Roofs Around the Neighborhood

If you’re in or near the Midwest, you probably know what we’re talking about. Especially for our fellow neighbors who are also in tornado valley, or so it seems. Last spring we had a massive hail storm. Skylights were broken, gutters dented, and some people even had to replace car windshields. And with a massive hail storm came roof replacement. The funny thing to me is that there is a process that takes place in order for the whole neighborhood to get a new roof. It goes something like this:

1. All neighbors come outside after the hail has passed to evaluate the size of the hail. They gasp.

2. One or two wise neighbors realize that they probably just had storm damage to their property.

3. One of those neighbors gets on the ball, and calls their insurance agent ASAP to get a claims team out to the house to evaluate.

4. Claims team comes to the house, determines that the home indeed got storm damage. Cuts check.

5. On-the-ball home owner gets quotes and settles on a roofing company.Roofing materials begin being delivered.

6. Surrounding neighbors begin to wonder what’s going on with the new roof down the street.

7. Roofing company pulls up, spends the whole day atop the roof and sticks a sign in the yard.

8. Other neighbors wise up and realize they too could most likely get a new roof because of the storm.

9. Neighbors call their insurance companies, soon the number of roofing signs down the street double.

10. A few months later, the last straggling neighbors also call their agents. By the time it’s over, nearly everyone on the street has a new roof.

Insurance Companies Don’t Like Neighborhood Envy

I imagine that insurance companies don’t like neighborhood envy. It’s a domino effect – you see one neighbor gets a new roof and then realize you could probably get a new roof, too. But at least everyone doesn’t hate that game; I’m sure roofing companies have a heyday.

 

Removing Unsightly Driveway Stains

Your yard is perfectly manicured, and your house’s paint looks like perfection. Don’t let unsightly driveway stains ruin your home’s curb appeal. If you’re tired of your driveway looking shabby, consider trying to remove the stains so that your house looks like the best on the block.

remove-oil-stains

Enhance your curb appeal by cleaning up oil stains

Removing Oil Stains from the Driveway

Whether it’s your own car leaking oil, or one of your guest’s, make sure that you try to get oil stains removed as soon as possible. Several tips for removing oil stains will include kitty litter, but this mainly gets the oil to rise from the surface. You can try covering the kitty litter with newspaper to get even more oil removed, or scrubbing the area with oven cleaner after using kitty litter. If kitty litter doesn’t work, you can also try scrubbing the area with gasoline or Ultra Dawn dish soap.

Or, if none of those easy tips are working, check out this video by professional Eric Stromer from HGTV that explains how to create a scrub to remove oil from your driveway.

It may seem like a pain, but your house will look much better with the oil stains removed. Be a good neighbor and help keep your neighborhood looking nice!

What If Christmas Lights were Like Mood Rings?

What if Christmas lights and outdoor lighting worked like mood rings. Wouldn’t it be funny, yet awesome at the same time. You’d know which neighbors were having a good day, and looking for company. You’d also know which houses to stay away from. Let’s imagine together… what if your Christmas lights could turn colors based on your mood….

red-christmas-lights

Red = Energy

Red Christmas Lights

A house turns red and shows everyone the party has started! Homeowners open their doors, as the bright red colors indicate that everyone is excited and adventurous!

green-christmas-lights

Green = Average Day Around Here

Green Christmas Lights

When the house turns green, we know that everyone is even-keel and having an average day. Nothing big happening here, everything is status-quo.

blue-christmas-lights

Blue = Looooovvveee

Blue Christmas Lights

As anyone’s 8-year-old self remembers, blue was the color of love. Slip that ring on, it turns blue, and then someone’s cheeks turn red. When the house turns blue, there’s some family love going around.

brown-christmas-lights

brown = need some fun soon!

Brown Christmas Lights

Restlessness. When the house gives off a brown glow, you know your neighbors are itching to move, change jobs, or even just get out of the house and have a good time! If your house has turned red, invite them over!

house-without-lights

black = no fun

Black = No Christmas Lights

A house without any lights would make for a very black sky nearby. The neighbors may be stressed, nervous and tense. When your neighbors face the doom-and-gloom black sky, recognize that the holidays may stress them out, and hope that their mood changes soon!

Hello, Neighbors.

Hello, Neighbors!

I can’t wait to dive into my blog where we talk about the latest and greatest about living in America. No, I’m not talking about democracy,  beautiful sights and sounds, nor the Nathan’s hot dog eating contest (although those are great, too.) I’m talking about the little green-eyed competition that occurs behind the little white picket fences lining our “American Dream Home” estates – neighborhood envy.

Christmas Light Show

Get the Neighbors Green Eyed

Also known as “Keeping up with the Joneses,” neighborhood envy runs fast through our shrub-lined streets and knocks on every neighbor’s front door. At first we try to shrug it off and be individualistic, soaking in the advice of our pop-cultured American influences that tell us different is good. But as we settle in, transform the homes into “our own” and gauge our “place” in the neighborhood – the green-eyed envy monster begins to invade our minds. We notice the neighbor’s new basketball court, or their gorgeous display of Christmas lights. We drive by slowly to read who put the new roof on the house, or admire the beautiful landscaping in full bloom. The competition begins. And then we realize we need it, too.

There are all kinds of neighborhoods out there, but whether you live in a luxury neighborhood or a standard suburban area, neighbors are always out to observe what’s happening with one another, and try to keep up. And while we can all agree that there is a line that shouldn’t be crossed (keeping up so much so that you foreclose on your house, for one) neighborhood envy can actually be a lot of fun. It can help you keep your house in great shape, ensuring that your property values go up. It also creates a great discussion for you as you adorn your homes with the best lights you can and throw the greatest parties, while attracting attention to your home and sparking relationships with your neighbors. It can be difficult to just have fun these days, and playing up neighborhood envy is one way to bring a little lightheartedness to the world around us.

As a girl next door and fan of a wonderful neighborhood competition, welcome to my blog. We’re here to point out how fun it is to be extreme when adorning the house and have a friendly competition with the neighbors.

Game on!

-nextdoorwinnie