Must-Have Phone Numbers for Your New Home

Moving is largely about looking back and looking forward. We make meticulous lists of everything before the move: from what has to be packed up or tossed out from the old house, to the utilities turn-off dates and the moving van’s pickup time. Likewise, we do our best to make sure that everything in the new home is ready to go so that we can seamlessly start our new life.

And an important part of that post-move plan is to be prepared. Sure, you’ll probably have a good idea of what you want to put in each room as you unpack. But what if you suddenly need a dentist? Or your son gets sick? Or a pipe bursts in your basement? Would you be prepared for any of these situations?

You should make a list of of important phone numbers before you move (or, at worst, soon after you move in), and make sure to share it and its location with everyone in your household. Here are some ideas for what numbers to put on your list.

Police department/Fire department.
If you have an emergency, you should call 911. However, it’s always helpful to have the local phone numbers of these personnel handy as well, in case you have a question about ordinances, need to report something, or need other non-emergency help.

Doctor/Hospital.
Be sure to have the phone number of your physician in your new town (as well as the physicians for everybody else in your family) in case there’s a sudden illness and you need a same-day appointment, or if you just need some medical advice.

Dentist.
People don’t usually think of needing a dentist’s number right away, but if a dental disaster occurs—such as a chipped tooth—trust us, you’ll be glad you have it. If your kids have braces, make sure to have the contact info for their orthodontist as well.

Poison control.
Hopefully you won’t be one of the approximately 24 million people who call poison control each year. But with harmful chemicals common in households, it’s a good idea to have the number at the ready, just in case.

Vet.
We can’t speak with our pets, but we can speak with their vets. Keep your local veterinarian’s contact information easily accessible in the event of your four-legged friend needing some expert help—especially since that possibility is enhanced as they explore their new surroundings.

School. 
New school district, new school, new friends. All reasons to have the school’s phone number readily available as you and your family adjust to a new area. The school will have your phone number in case they need to contact you; you should do the same.

Plumber.
Researching for a plumber can save you from a ton of headaches, especially if your new home’s in a different area of the state or country. Look at reviews online, ask around, and keep in mind the plumber’s proximity to your new home. Once you decide on one, add his or her number to your list.

Utilities company.
You likely already have the contact information for your new utility company on your new bill or service agreement. Jot it down on your list in case you have an issue such as a blackout.

Babysitter. 
This one is almost second nature for parents. Because of the important role the babysitter plays, you very well may have to plan ahead to find a reliable, trustworthy one in your new neighborhood. When you do, you don’t want to have to root around for her number.

Pizza place.
Yes, this is important, especially when you first move and may not have everything unpacked and set up at your new place (including pots, pans, or silverware). Fortunately, many restaurants send complimentary mailings to the new family on the block, so you can easily transfer the number onto your list.


Click below to get this handy list of important phone numbers, and put it on your fridge or near your phone—any place where you or anyone else in your household can easily access it at any time.

What Does The Ideal Millennial Neighborhood Look Like?

A stereotype has developed that Millennials don’t make for great neighbors. Statistics show that the new generation of home buyers are the least likely to know any sort of basic info about their neighbors. Even names and occupations of their neighbors is information Millennials may be totally unfamiliar with.

This, of course, is in stark contrast to what Baby Boomers and Gen X’ers hold near and dear about their neighborhoods. What is perhaps most curious of all is that Millennials actually value living in their preferred neighborhood more than the past two generations ever did. So, are Millennials really ruining the friendly neighborhood mentality, or just redefining it?

Willing to compromise

Across the board, Millennials seem to care far less about the two-car garage or the renovated kitchen, and much more about the neighborhood as a whole. In comparison with the previous two generations, Millennials are far more likely to compromise on a valuable feature of their home if it means they can live in their desired neighborhood.

Likewise, the physical aspects of the neighborhood seem to have the most bearing on Millennials when deciding where to live. For the most part, Millennial home buyers are less concerned with getting to know their neighbors, as they are worried their home and property surrounding it is well maintained. In other words, you don’t have to invite them over for dinner, so long as you trim your hedges and clean up after your pets.

Values are changing

Many want to criticize Millennials for not being the neighbor someone else would like them to be. Although it seems prominent now, this is an issue that will likely be short lived. Consider that as more Millennials buy homes, the expectations that take precedent are those of the Millennials. A neighborhood full of people who aren’t bothered by anti-social neighbors won’t lead to any dissatisfaction among the families living there.

Proximity matters less

In the age of the internet and constant entertainment, leaving the house isn’t the only way to keep yourself busy. It’s also not the only way to get in touch with friends. People might rather spend an hour on FaceTime with their college roommate than go out of their comfort zone to meet new people in their neighborhood.

Whether you’re opposed to the change or indifferent to it, Millennial culture is clashing with neighborhoods, and that likely won’t change in the near future. In fact, the stats about the Millennial outlook on neighborhoods may be much more indicative of the generation’s tendencies as a whole. Prioritizing the way things look and seem above the substance of relationships and interaction lines up with much of what is said about the generation as a whole.

10 Top Traits of Good Neighbors

Whether you rent a city apartment or own a family home in the countryside, live miles away from your nearest neighbor or are situated close enough to chat from your own back patio—you can make small changes in your community every day by quite simply just acting in a neighborly way.

The importance of being a good neighbor extends far beyond improving bonds with those you live closest to. In fact, Harvard professor and author Robert D. Putnam says, “Communities work better (students perform better, crime rates are lower, kids are safer, people live longer) when neighbors know one another better. Knowing your neighbors on a first-name basis, as National Neighborhood Day suggests, is a surprisingly effective first step toward a better America.”

So to help inspire the practice of neighborly ways in your own community, we’ve gathered a list of top things good neighbors do.

Take the time to establish good terms and build relationships with all neighbors.
Great neighbors make their communities friendlier and safer, while improving the overall quality of life for themselves and those who surround them.

Pay it forward.
Every time a neighbor does something nice, he or she pays it forward to at least two other neighbors. Even simple things—like clearing a neighbor’s driveway before he or she gets the chance to, offering up a piece of lawn equipment to save a neighbor valuable time, or bringing along an extra latte on your morning walk to work—can have a huge impact on a neighborly relationship.

Do your part.
Keeping the neighborhood looking beautiful is a community effort, and good neighbors keep all spaces that are visible by others clean and well maintained. They keep up with basic yard work, making sure that the lawn is mowed, hedges are trimmed, and weeds are kept at bay; they understand that these tasks not only impact the value of their house, but also the homes around it.

Follow up with seasonal maintenance.
This includes sweeping up leaves in the fall, shoveling sidewalks and driveways in the winter, and cleaning up lawn clippings during warmer months. The neighbors that brighten up their outdoor space with flowers and other landscaping set the precedent for the rest of the street.

Be tidy.
Good neighbors take care to put their trash out on the right night, and in proper receptacles, so that the whole street doesn’t see (or smell) what they’ve tossed.

Be conscientious about outdoor decor.
Decorating for the holidays is a great way to spruce up an outdoor space, but make it a house rule that your haunted houses and lights come down within a few weeks of the holiday passing.

Don’t fight for the right to party.
When having additional people over, the noise level can go up very quickly. The most courteous neighbors inform others of get-togethers, and ask to let them know if the gathering has gotten too loud. Better yet, they invite all the neighbors to the party!

Take an active presence in change and community decisions.
Caring neighbors stay informed on community issues and make it a point to vote. It’s likely that you and your neighbors have busy lives and schedules, but if the community comes together as a group, change can happen more efficiently, and issues can be resolved more quickly. Plus, just showing up at community meetings and offering input shows that they care about the community and the people who share it.

Show respect.
Good neighbors teach their kids what both literal and figurative boundaries mean by explaining where their property ends and the neighbor’s begins, and any rules that go along with that. They also reinforce the concept that being on one side of the property line doesn’t mean noise levels can be ignored.

Know how to bring people together.
If their community doesn’t already have a method of sharing news, good neighbors would start a neighborhood e-mail list as a means of staying in communication with all of the neighbors in one fell swoop; and the best part is, once it is started, they don’t have to be the only one who keeps the momentum going. Any participating neighbor can spread the word about news, events, crimes, special garbage pickups, special event parking restrictions, weather hazards, school closings, and even the awesome weekly deal at the local market.

Eventually, the positive energy that these good neighbors spread will create a ripple effect of random acts of kindness and make the community a happier place to live. The next time new neighbors move in, consider welcoming the newcomers with a friendly hello and some local insider tips to quickly become the favorite neighbor on the block. Or choose from our collection of bright and cheerful neighborly greetings for anytime-gratitude that really stands out.