Introducing myself to new neighbors - thoughts and opinions welcome!

Howdy all! As of today, I am the sole (human) occupant of my new residence - the friend that is renting the house to me flies out for Germany in about an hour, and thus I will be the primary resident at his place for the next few years. As such, I’ve decided it might be nice to let the neighbors know that there is a new person in the house - my friend is NOT the most social of people, and my impression is that he never got to know his neighbors, nor cared to. Still, I’d like for them to know why there is a new car and strange people going in and out of the house, and unlike my buddy, I have always liked being social with those who live around me. That said, with the limitations of work and people’s busy schedules these days, I’d feel awkward just knocking on doors and saying “Hi, I’m your new neighbor” - I’d hate to interrupt someone’s dinner or the like. With this in mind, I thought it might be nice to make up a little greeting card as a means of introducing myself and inviting them to get to know me, that I can pop in the mail. That way, if they are the social types, they can know I am friendly and willing to meet, and if they are more like my buddy, they can stay recluses and I won’t be intruding on them.

What do y’all think? Is this a good idea, or a bad one? If I do it, what sort of information should I include? I’d hate to say too much, in this day and age of identity theft, but I’d also like to include a little information to let them know what to expect of me, I guess. Also, I have two children, one aged 10, the other 3, and my girlfriend, who will be a frequent guest, has one aged 14 and one aged 3. I thought it might be nice to include a note that we have kids, in case there are other kids in the neighborhood that might like to get to know them…but I’m not sure if this is a kosher idea or not.

Hence, I turn to thee, the great and powerful minds of the Dope. Thoughts? Opinions? Advice?

Thanks much in advance!

Do it in person, not with a greeting card. Just pop round after about 20:00 and introduce yourself. Have photos of the children ready to show once you’ve struck up a conversation.

Yeah, the intro by mail thing strikes me as weird. I’d wait until you see one of the neighbors out dumping the trash, working in the yard, or whatever, and just walk over to introduce yourself.

When I bought my house, I set aside an hour on a weekend to introduce myself to the neighbors. I make wine, so I went with a bottle to each neighbor. I kept it very short and sweet, giving out a business card with my cell number inked on the back.

If you wait a bit, some of your new neighbors just may come over and introduce themselves to you, if they’re aware you moved in. If not, then I agree, don’t do it by mail, do it in person. If your kids live with you, bring them along - good excuse to keep the visit short, and that way they’ll be introduced to the neighbors as well, who just may have kids around the same age. You don’t need a gift. Saturdays after 11:00 or so are probably the best time to try.

Absolutely, in person. Weekend is best; early or mid afternoon, but early evening weekdays is just fine too. You’ll still bother some accidentally but the only ones who will be truly annoyed are the ones you are not likely to bond with later anyway.

I don’t think a small gift is necessary.

Take a note to tape on the door in case no one answers, saying that you stopped by and would like their permission to try one more time; leave a mechanism of contacting you for this. Knock or ring the doorbell only once.

A neighborhood where everyone knows each other even if they aren’t playing poker together is a safer neighborhood, and one where common civility can translate to increased property value.

Good fences make good neighbors. They may want to be left alone.

Alright, in person it is - thanks all for the advice! It’s been ages since I’ve had neighbors - I lived most of the last decade or so on a rural farm. Your etiquette advice is appreciated!

Weather permitting, just be outside. Wash the car with the kids, have a snowman building contest, walk the dog, whatever you can think of but just be out where the neighbors might have a chance to see you, introductions will follow naturally.

BTW, I’ve always felt that it’s the established neighbors who should make the effort to welcome the newcomers. Of course, this doesn’t preclude the new resident from walking around and making introductions either.

I think it depends on the type of area you’re in. My first thought was close to what rayman5321 said. I live a bit out in the boonies because, among other reasons, I like being left alone, as do several of my neighbors. We’re not total strangers to each other, but there’s no “neighborhood social” thing going on either. Suits me just fine.

On the other end of the scale, if you’re in the sort of area where everyone knows everyone else, knocking on doors and saying hello might be the best way to introduce yourself. This would be the sort of area where being known as “that guy who works odd hours and keeps to himself” would be a bad thing.

In the middle would be Queen Tonya’s idea. Not overly friendly but not a hermit. You may say hello across the back fence or at the post office or corner store just going about your day.

In person is better. Card better than nothing.
between 17 and 18 oclock works for me. Probably home (just), and making dinner, but not seated yet. Obviously this is just to say hello, not chat. Better time, Saturday morning (around 10 in my neighborhood).

Alas, I didn’t get a chance to follow up on this on Saturday - still finishing settling in stuff from moving. I’ve decided to go with the more relaxed method, and as soon as the weather is a little less bone-chillingly cold, I’ll spend some times outdoors and see who I see.

Thanks again all for the advice!