Just like people, families have their own personalities. And so do apartment communities! Some are shyer and keep to themselves, while others are more likely to plan and party it up at community functions. No matter the vibe in your building, there are standards of etiquette that apply to all. Here are some tips:

Keep It Quiet

Rule number one: don’t run around and scream at the top of your lungs in the middle of the night. Be courteous to your neighbors who live on the other side of your walls and take your band practice elsewhere.

Instead of honking your horn every time you pull into the apartment parking lot, use your cell phone to get the attention of the person you’re picking up. Or, if you’re picking a special someone up for a date, consider showing how classy you are by knocking on the door.

Make the Outside of Your Apartment Look Nice

Whether it’s your front porch or even the apartment parking lot, the outside area of your apartment sends a message about you and your neighbors. So keep it clean! Throw away your trash. Alert maintenance if there is mold or peeling paint. Make sure that any potted plants or decor don’t creep over into your neighbor’s space.

And when it comes to toys, skateboards, and bicycles, make sure each has a designated place and looks neat. There are times when it’s appropriate to use your patio for an organized storage space and times when it’s better to keep these items inside. When in doubt, check with the office.

Smile and Wave to your Neighbors

Remember those personalities we talked about earlier? If you’re an introvert, it might be hard to introduce yourself to your neighbors. You don’t have to become everyone’s best friend, but do your best to show your neighbors that you’re a friendly, contributing member of society. You’d be surprised just how far a single smile and wave can go.

When you get the opportunity, spend a few minutes getting to know them. If someone ever tried to break into your home while you were gone, would anyone that lived next to you go the extra mile to call you to let you know? Or call the cops for you? Whether or not you care to make friends, getting to know your neighbors can really help you out when hard times come.

Being a friendly neighbor helps everyone involved gain a sense of calm and comfort. There’s peace of mind in knowing that you are all surrounded by people who could look out for each other. The community will look more beautiful, and chances are you’ll be more content at your home.