AS WE COME OUT FROM HIBERNATION, MAKE FRIENDS WITH YOUR NEIGHBOURS, NOT ENEMIES
When living as part of a community there are typically rules and regulations designed to keep the peace. In addition to written policies, there are neighbourly expectations to be considerate of one another and each other’s property. Here are a few general tips to make this summer a friendly one:
- As doors and windows are open more in the warmer months, be aware of noise levels including music or loud conversations and keep them under control
- Ensure litter, cigarette butts, pet hair and other wind-blown debris including that which is stirred up from outdoor sweeping don’t make their way to another’s balcony or outside space
- Pick up after your pet
- Be aware of the direction pipe, cigar or cigarette smoke is travelling
Be aware of one another. Consider people may have different shifts. People may have allergies. Simply show concern and consideration to neighbours and we can all enjoy our space.
WHEN INCONSIDERATION ESCALATES… TIPS FOR NEIGHBOUR CONFLICT MANAGEMENT
The Condo Acts provide guidelines and mandates for dispute resolution but before the boards of directors, mediators or lawyers get involved consider if the matter is worth the investment of your time and money for legal advice, representation and court costs.
I would like to suggest a proactive approach instead of a reactive one. Conflict is natural and can’t be avoided. Instead of shying away from it or coming at each other prepared for a full battle, learn to manage conflict:
- Early Intervention
- Effective Communication
- Measured Escalation
Strongly written letters quoting the corporation’s by-laws and rules is probably meant to illustrate the seriousness of the matter with hopes of compliance but often is received as harsh and bullish putting everyone on the defensive which begs for a fight.
Perhaps starting with a softer approach like a simple conversation informing the other party of their non-compliance would suffice. Delaying the delivery of a compliance letter doesn’t weaken your legal position should it come to that, but it can go a long way to set the stage for cooperation and buy-in to necessary changes in action.