I'm sure some people will read this and think, whatever happened to the good old days, where if you wanted to meet your neighbors, you'd go outside and rake the leaves or check the mail. My answer is this: technology is the future and the future is now. As much as a lot of you may not want to accept it, we're headed towards robotic world domination. Most people spend so much time on their phones, they aren't staying up to date with what's happening right outside their front door. With the Nextdoor app, you're able to stay involved in your community right from your phone or laptop and possibly (hopefully) get the motivation to get physically involved as well.
Anyway, here's how it works: you download the app, sign up as a user with your address, and then you're added to your own, private neighborhood group where you can chat all things local. On the left hand side of your screen, you'll see all sorts of clickable categories.
Some of the sections include:
This is where you can either give a business props for being great OR you can ask others for recommendations on great businesses. I've seen neighbors boasting about anything from carpet cleaners to tree removal to in-home daycare to donuts! I really enjoy this section because you're talking to real people with real experiences rather than trusting what reviews a business chooses to put on their website. The best part is that at the end of the year, the recommendations page features the yearly "Neighborhood Favorites" (see below).
The developers at Nextdoor combine the millions of business recommendations from your neighbors with answers pooled from surveys to officially announce the best places to eat, shop, etc. in the area. Check out the snapshot below of the "Neighborhood Favorites: Food & Drink" by my house. I'd say my neighbors were pretty spot on with their votes!
For Sale & Free
This is basically a neighborhood Craigslist. You post things for sale and your neighbors can message you to purchase them. You can search specifically for free, or even discounted, items. It also allows you to search in a broader area than just your neighborhood, if you'd like.
Lost & Found
This is honestly where I've spent most of my time on the app. The community comes together to help find each other's lost pets and locate owners! It's wonderful. There's the occasional "lost" post that's not a pet, like this one:
Though the owner of the lost pets/items usually add updates to the posts, I never did get an update on whether or not the poor, lost tombstone was found.
This is where you can select what interests you. Once you've specified what you like, the sponsored ads that are displayed throughout your feed (hey, they have to fund themselves somehow) will be a bit more personalized. Your interests will also show up on the left hand side of your screen. You can click on these individually and be directed towards a plethora of neighborhood posts directly related to that topic. Unfortunately, my neighbors aren't too active in this area so there isn't much talk in my neighborhood in regards to specific interests.
This page is pretty cool because it shows you a map with all of the homes for sale as well as a feed of the home details.You can search explicitly in your desired neighborhood, or zoom out to find homes for sale in your desired town and surrounding areas. When you click on a particular home for sale, you can see a side by side comparison of that home to your current home.
There are so many other cool aspects to the Nextdoor app that would take days to explore. Instead of me boring you with more of my babbling, download Nextdoor and check it out for yourself! Maybe you'll finally learn the man's name that lives across the street and kindly waves at you every time you pull into the driveway.
And if you happen to come across a home that's for sale that you're interested in, feel free to reach out. We'd be happy to help you set up a showing!