Making friends as you start a new life

As the excitement of moving into a brand-new home builds, remember that this next move is more than an opportunity to build a house from the ground up with your own personal signature. It also comes with the prospect of developing new, meaningful connections that could last forever; networks that can enrich lives and promote well-being.

During the pandemic lockdowns, neighbors who previously hadn’t known each other’s names learned what they had in common. On breaks outside from working from home or distance learning from home, they stopped and chatted in front of their homes.

They exchanged phone numbers and formed new messaging groups to encourage and assist one another.

Simple messages became the norm, such as, “I’m at the store and have room in my cart. What can I pick up for any of you to save you a trip out?” or “Hi, everyone. In case you didn’t hear, we’ll be back in the purple tier tomorrow. Stay safe. Let’s keep helping each other.”

Over time, what were mere community acquaintances blossomed into friendly relationships. We came to know each other better. We remembered how much we need each other. And we were reminded of how good it feels not only to come together but to help others — and to let others help us.

Form new circles before moving

Look at the move to a new construction home through the same lens of people’s need to share, find common ground and be mutually available when needs arise.

In a development of new homes, forming connections with neighbors from a blank slate can be at least as fulfilling as decorating a blank slate of brand new rooms.

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Go ahead and plan visits to the new neighborhood, even if construction hasn’t finished in the phase where you’re buying. Many builders are selling homes in the second or later phases of the communities in which they build. In those areas, neighbors are already in place.

Although you won’t have time to live in two places at once, why not spend one of your days off or part of an evening or weekend day getting to know the new neighborhood and surrounding amenities and activities that residents enjoy?

Choose times of day when people are most likely to be outside such as weekend mornings, weekday evenings just after dinner or popular shopping times at local retailers. Lace up your shoes and be ready to take walks through public areas, where you might meet people.

Before leaving, look up community and public parks as well as the location of grocery stores, restaurants, schools and open-air shopping centers. Grab a bite to eat; perhaps a Saturday coffee, a Sunday brunch or a Wednesday evening ice cream cone.

Remember that kids and dogs are natural icebreakers. If you have either, bring them along for the occasional adventure to your future home or the local amenities surrounding the neighborhood.

Before heading back from a visit, consider doing your regular grocery trips at local markets in the new area so they’ll feel like home after your move.

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Source:: The Mercury News – Entertainment

      

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