How to check your own conduct as a resident in an apartment

[] What makes one an ideal resident in an apartment complex? We look at the basic etiquettes that home owners should follow, to maintain cordial relations with neighbours

Home owners often have complaints about their builder and their residents’ welfare associations, vis-à-vis issues like cost of the apartment, delay in delivery, costly maintenance, poor facility management. While these grievances may be legitimate, residents rarely ponder over their own conduct in the housing complex. To be an ideal resident, there are several common habits that one should avoid, while living in an apartment.

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Dropping trash over the balcony

Balconies are meant to provide the comfort of an open space, within the house. It is an ideal space to have a cup of tea, read newspapers, or just relax in the fresh air. However, residents should ensure that they never toss waste or hair over the balcony, or pour water that ends up on the floors below.

RM Prasad, a resident of Greater Noida west, recounts how he had to fight with the residents on the upper floors of his apartment, who would use their balconies as ashtrays. “The ash would float down in the breeze and fall on our face. Why should I be deprived of my open space, due to someone else’s callousness?” says Prasad.

Flower beds

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People living in cities, often prefer to have small gardens in their balconies. However, extending the balcony and hanging flower pots outside, can pose an accident risk to others.

Drying clothes in the balcony

This practice is mostly banned in upscale societies but other apartments, many residents use the balconies and common areas, to dry their washed clothes. In the absence of an alternative, home owners can use a cloth drying stand, as this would definitely appear more civilised.

Littering the lobby of the building

While sweeping the house, avoid pushing the dirt outside the main door and onto the lobby area. If all the neighbours on the same floor start practicing this convenient way to clean the house, the lobby of the given floor would turn into an open dustbin.

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Encroachment of society common areas

No one would like to take a dirty shoe inside the house. However, this does not mean that a home owner should encroach the staircase or lobby areas and put up a shoe rack there or use such spaces for their personal belongings. Similarly, balconies might be personal spaces, but home owners should not use it as a tool to extend their carpet area, by getting it covered and violating norms and fire safety guidelines.

WhatsApp etiquette

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A society’s WhatsApp group is not a personal friends’ circle. Although a ‘Good morning’ message everyday may not be objected by anyone, it could amount to spamming. Divya Bhatia, a resident of Gurugram, for example, says she is fed up with her society’s residents fighting in a WhatsApp group, over which is the best political party. “No one is bothered about your political preference. If you are that loyal, please go and meet in person to do so, instead of spoiling the mood of other neighbours everyday,” Bhatia fumes.

Imposing personal beliefs

Ensure that your personal beliefs do not become a source of nuisance for other members. For example, your astrologer’s advice for feeding dogs, should not result in the apartment complex becoming a haven for stray dogs and a security threat to the children in society.

Abuse of common facilities

Common facilities are meant to be shared. Hence, plucking all the flowers from the society garden for one’s personal pooja, or turning the clubhouse into a personal office meeting space, or inviting friends and family to enjoy the swimming pool, are all abuse of shared facilities.

(The writer is CEO, Track2Realty)

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Category: Lifestyle

Debora Berti

Università degli Studi di Firenze, IT

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