We’re all familiar with the Aussie sitcom Neighbours – where the storyline surrounds Ramsay Street, a friendly (and rather dramatic) cul-de-sac, where over time neighbours have become friends who then became family.
So what actually makes a neighbourhood? How does a street with houses and residents transform into a happy, healthy, tolerant and inclusive environment?
Our neighbourhoods and communities are only as strong as the people who live in them – so the answer is YOU.
Not everyone was lucky enough to have the quintessential suburban childhood, but for those who did, you’ll look back fondly on the memories of roaming the streets on bikes and playing hide and seek until our Mums called us in for dinner.
This enviable neighbourhood sprit is still alive today but you just have to scratch below the surface to find it…
Tips for finding and choosing a family-friendly neighbourhood
1. We’re just going to say it loud and proud for number one: ask us, your real estate agent! We’re locals, we know the area and we know where the family-friendly suburbs are.
2. Hit the footpath: what better way to find out than immersing yourself in the weekend culture of an area. Try a Saturday – key indicators are that you’ll see other families out and about, fresh farmers markets on the school grounds and community activities happening in and around the suburb.
3. Asses how many schools are in the area: this counts for preschools, primary schools and high schools. Staying in the one place for your children’s education is a key factor in becoming part of a neighbourhood, simply because it enables your family time to forge strong relationships with the people around you.
4. Are there common areas like parks and playgrounds? This is where you’ll sit with John and Mary from down the street while watching over your children playing together. These areas bring families together and are vital to a healthy neighbourhood.
5. Look for local shopping centres: You’re half-way through making dinner and you realise you’re out of onions – off to the shops you go. While having a local chain supermarket is handy for the big shops, picking up a few things with the kids is made a lot easier with a smaller shop just around the corner.
Modern life is fast paced – we’re all so used to communicating with people online or via mobile and we often get so swamped with the day-to-day demands that we forget about those simple niceties, like saying “hello, how are you going” as you walk by someone in your street, or having a chat with the neighbour over the fence.
But, if you look for those key characteristics mentioned above, you’ll be getting together with other families in the street for a weekend barbecue in no time.
If you’d like to know more about the family-friendly suburbs located in Darwin and Palmerston, please give us a call on (08) 8932 8858.
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