Recently, my HOA board decided to implement and review a new model for connecting our neighborhood called Nextdoor. A good friend of mine named Casey Peters introduced me to the idea, as he had said it really opened up communication and helped his neighborhood organize, discuss risk management, ask for recommendations, borrow lawn equipment, share an aerator for the weekend, share documents for review, and discuss safety issues.
Nextdoor is a social media for your neighborhood. And I know what you are thinking…I don’t need another social media outlet. But think of it as your source for neighborhood information, it is where your neighborhood “Stuff” exists. That is what Nextdoor was designed for. So below are a few cool things we found that I believe makes Nextdoor a great tool for neighborhoods, neighbors, communities and HOAs to use:
1. Once you login and map out your neighborhood the founding member can invite neighbors, or Nextdoor will send out postcards asking for invites for no charge. So the invitation doesn’t cost you too much time, or money. Also many neighborhoods have emails, so you can invite folks via your email list.
2. Categories – This is where you can post info, or ask questions to your neighborhood about Classifieds, Crime & Safety discussion, Share Documents for the neighborhood, Lost and Found and Recommendations. These categories will also allow you to post pictures as well.
3. Group creation is something you can create as well – I like this feature for the garden club, golf club, bridge club, etc…
4. An Event Calendar is also available to remind everyone of your Cinco De Mayo party.
5. There is an inbox, which you can ping back and forth. So that is nice.
6. Profile is interesting because if you want to share, you can. If you want to post a picture you can. If you want to tell folks what you like and don’t like you can…but you don’t have to.
7. There are several privacy features that are great. For instance, I can see what is happening in neighborhoods close to me, but you can also turn those other neighborhoods off. In settings you can explore great options for email alerts, if that is what you prefer or not.
I can’t say enough about the opportunity to connect using this Application and Website. It is a great tool for a neighborhood. Buy in from the community you live in can be tough; so good luck with that. What I can say is, if they are willing to take the time to learn I think they will see the value in being plugged in. Mention it to your Home Owners Association and see if they have interest in exploring, or just start it yourself!