Annoying Neighbours


On every street, in every neighbourhood, there is always that annoying neighbour.

You know the one I’m talking about, or perhaps you may be that annoying neighbour.

Aside from the normal reasons to move; a growing family, downsizing, divorce, or the dreaded employment relocation...having an annoying neighbour seems to be an ever growing motive and is slowly moving into the position of the top three reasons to move…based on my experience anyway.

I recall not too long ago, during a showing where the homeowner was home, my client asked the homeowner “what are your neighbours like”

...oddly enough and to my complete surprise, with no censorship, the vendor called the neighbours various names and branded them as the

main reason they were moving. Needless to say, my client didn’t buy that particular home.

From blah curb appeal to loud noise, neighbours do directly impact people’s willingness to buy or sell...not to mention how they can affect the

sale price or property values on the street. So, the question must be asked: Are you that annoying neighbour? Sights like too many cars in the driveway, or worse, cars that are not driveable just sitting there in a heap really frustrate the neighboring homeowners who take pride in their home’s appearance.

Grass that is overgrown and flower beds (if any) are really weed beds and several copies of the weekly paper lay strewn about. This clearly shows an obvious lack of maintenance and will typically bring down the entire street’s market value. After all, nobody wants to live beside a ‘pig-pen’.

From roof shingles and driveways that need obvious repair, to eaves-troughs, fences and gates that just barely hang in their place, to the faded paint jobs, and broken windows or light fixtures...all these tell-tale signs depict an area of lower standards and label the homeowner or tenant as ‘the annoying neighbours’.  

Then there are the real annoying neighbours that just drive everybody around absolutely know the ones I’m talking about; the noisy ones. By noisy, I mean those ignorant neighbours that leave their dog outside for hours; the poor dog is just lonely (or too hot or cold) so he/she barks for attention...endlessly. Or, those parents who simply let their kids run wild, screaming and shrieking at the top of their lungs for the entire afternoon or the basketball bouncing constantly into your flowerbeds or windows while the parents sit there and watch ... all this making it impossible for you to enjoy your own backyard. Then there are always the “stereo wars”; one neighbour playing gangster rap and the other classic country and seems every hour or so the volume edges up another decibel.

Plus, there’s the domestic mistreatment and yelling from one spouse to another all in full view and or earshot of many of the other neighbours. Or lastly, that annoying neighbour that never thinks of anyone else but themselves; who starts up his lawnmower, gas-powered power washer or wipper-snipper usually every Sunday night at 8:45 pm. I’m not kidding...he's my neighour.  It usually happens just when we and sometimes our guests are winding down the day and enjoying a quit evening drink and conversation, when all of a sudden, the neighbour starts up his lawn-mower and begins to cut his grass (in the dark) ...there goes that quit peaceful evening.

So again I ask the question; Are you an annoying neighbour?

If any of these simple examples are part of your regular routine…you get the picture. So, please show a little respect to your neighbours, and show some pride in your home’s appearance. You don’t have to do everything all at once, just start. Drop me a line and tell me about your neighbours.


Civility or Narcissist

Everyone is talking about civility these days...or more correctly, the lack of it. But oddly enough, I don’t think it’s just incivility that's taking place in our society - its blatant narcissism. Let’s not even factor in the lack of manners...I’m not talking about poor etiquette, although that too is very much lacking.

Now some people may consider this a harsh statement, but I think most will agree, an uncivil person is in my opinion, NOT the same as an individual lacking in everyday etiquette... These people seem to be declaring they know/are better and have the right to declare it and loudly, and almost always in a public forum despite strong social rules discouraging this type of behavior. Or, even in a one-on-one conversation...whether they text while in a conversation with you, or they make the bank teller and the other people in line wait while they finish their conversation on their cell phone. Or, they continue to raise their voice thinking that volume must have something to do with being correct. 

Here’s the ironic thing to me...narcissism puts the self first before all others – so, they must have deep feelings towards themselves –shouldn’t they realize the rest of us have feelings too and perhaps comprehend that our feelings are being hurt by their actions? 

Have you ever been in a theater and the guy’s phone behind you rings? Then the idiot answers it and begins to have a conversation – who is being ruder; you for telling him to put it away or him for thinking he is so important that he can treat the entire theater as his private office...Is he narcissistic?

What about people in the office? If your income or position is higher than mine, are you better than me? If I’m selling a product or perhaps a service (nudge nudge) and you are the prospective client...are you better than me – am I considered a peddler? Maybe technology is to blame in making people think they are more important than they really are, thus the need for a cell phone and instant emails...perhaps some of it is ego-driven and I’m sure some of it was a result of the ME generation. 

It’s scary...almost a sense of self-entitlement or simply defying the rules because you can. Keep in mind that everyone has rights, but common courtesy needs to be upheld. Throughout our history, people fought hard for their rights: racial equality, women’s rights, aboriginal rights,gay and lesbian rights... There were many defiant for a cause, and those groups prevailed because it was good for the group and society as a whole...but today’s people just take everything for granted.

Maybe if everyone was self-employed? Or, at least paid strictly on commission? Would it make the customer service aspect better? Would it make people more diligent in their roles and responsibilities? Would it change attitudes and mannerisms? And, would it teach people that, while working, time is indeed money and not to waste it?

I’m absolutely sure it would help people prepare and maintain schedules, to plan ahead, and to have contingency plans. To communicate better and to follow up - perhaps even use a telephone again. It would bring back that sense of urgency. It would definitely prepare people for rejection and failure, and possibly assist in money management. 

And for sure, it would make people aware that their time is not more important than anyone else’s. Another point in the narcissist's world...

Perhaps it could also hone one's skills in listening and even would enhance peoples manners, courtesies, and professionalism, hopefully even put peoples' egos in check. For some it would make them financially better off, yet for others it could possibly put a strain on their finances until they have learned some manners and how to properly communicate and respect the ‘rules’ of society.

Have you ever gone into a store and received the worst service? Something in your head says “if he worked for me, I’d fire him”. Or when you’ve specifically made an appointment time, and you are left sitting there for more than 30 minutes...doesn’t that frustrate you?

By now you must be curious about where I’m heading...there is a point to my blathering, it’s both experience-based and optimistic at the same time. I’ve written all this to hopefully put you in a mood of ‘wow, I never thought about that’ almost like an ‘aha moment.  

What I’m specifically speaking about is the demeanor of people. I see it every day in my dealings with the general public. It’s a roller coaster ride; one that would be a lot less wild if people weren’t so ‘me first’ oriented. Yes, maybe the term narcissist is a bit heavy difficult, but it works to bring realization to my topic. With over two decades of service, I have had to deal with some extremely ignorant/narcissistic individuals, I’ve had to manage other people’s emotions and, in some cases, rage. I’ve learned to become a marriage counselor and psychologist. In some instances, I’ve been a caterer or a clean-up specialist. I’ve been asked to forecast the future and explain the past, and then verbally accosted when they don’t like the answer. 

If people would only slow down and be a little nicer to themselves and their fellow man. This line about there isn’t enough time is BS; make the time to be polite and courteous. A ‘do unto others’ kind of thing; this world would be a much more pleasant environment to live and work in. And, at this time of year consider these things when you’re stuck in a busy mall parking lot waiting for that empty spot or waiting in the long line shopping for that perfect civil, be kind,be nice.

Maybe this Blog has helped open your eyes and maybe you’ll simply hit the delete button. For me it has let me vent a little because, as a REALTOR® it seems like I run into an uncivil or narcissist almost every day.