You just moved into a new apartment complex in a new city. You have the benefit of neighbors on your side—apartments all around you filled with potential new friends. That’s just one of the benefits of avoiding suburban isolation and entering into an enriching community of apartment dwellers.

So, how do you meet your new neighbors? It’s tough to be the new guy, and this is an all too common scenario for many renters. With just a little effort, you will able to take advantage of the community around you and create a long-lasting social scene just outside your door. Here are just a few ideas to introduce yourself to your neighbors and ensure a future of dinner parties, running buddies, and play groups.

How to Meet Your Neighbors:

  • Leave a Sweet Treat: It’s common for polite and sociable neighbors to stop by with a baked good or bottle of wine for the new tenant, but why not take fate into your own hands? Bake some cookies and leave them for each of the neighbors on your floor with a note to stop by and say hello. Your neighbors will love your congeniality, and this opens the door (literally) to stop by and chat.
  • Start a Club: Movie buff? Book worm? Hang a flyer in your apartment building’s lobby or in the mail room to gather an impromptu book club or movie screening. You’ll meet neighbors with similar interests and you can continue to plan events throughout the year.
  • Gather the Kids: If you have children, you know that play groups are imperative to acclimating your kids to the new apartment. Ask around and offer to host a gathering for all of the kids to meet each other. The best part is that your new best friends just might be the parents of your kid’s pals.
  • Plan a Building Party: You might need to work with the building’s management or landlord on this, but the effort is worth the reward. Plan a block party gathering for your building on a weekend afternoon or evening. Turn it into a potluck dinner and find a space to gather in or around your apartment complex.
  • Look Outside Your Walls: Apartment building neighbors are great, but don’t forget to the outside network of social opportunities in your town or city. Volunteer, join a church or temple, gather at playgrounds, become a regular at the gym—the opportunities to meet new people are endless. Maybe one will even live in your new building!

It can be tough to meet new people when you relocate, but with a positive attitude and a smile, your new neighbors may just turn into life-long friends.