Neighbor disputes and how to handle them:
Occasionally, homeowners may experience conflict with neighbors for various reasons such as noise, pets, children, fencing, trespassing, property damage, or parking. It is recommended to try to get to know your neighbors and build good relationships to discuss issues that may come up. Open communication that is respectful, polite, and sincere can help neighbors develop a stronger understanding of the circumstances. Having a balanced viewpoint can help all neighbors react rationally and in an objective and unbiased way. Homeowners who live in condominiums may benefit by asking for clarification and understanding of the bylaws from the property manager of the building. If the concern remains unresolved, there are resources available online to access mediation through third parties. Habitat does not get involved with personal disputes; however, we can support our homeowners by providing some guidance in seeking public resources available within the community.
Public Mediation Services:
*Please note that Habitat is not affiliated with any mediation service or dispute resolution providers. The options listed below are publicly available resources. Feel free to search and select any provider of your choice.
- Community Mediation (CMCS): communitymediation.ca
- Offers Free mediation & and conflict resolution assistance for neighbors and community members within the Calgary area. Reach out to a CMCS Intake Coordinator by telephone or email at 403-269-2707 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
- ADR Institute of Alberta: adralberta.com
- Provides resources on managing conflict, dispute resolution, and healthy communication.
- Offers conflict coaching and mediation services (check website for available services and fees).
- Government of Alberta: alberta.ca/dispute-resolution-families.aspx
- Dispute resolution for families.
- Options for resolving family disputes outside of the courts.
- Family mediation, arbitration, parenting coordination, and court resolution.
- Community Liaison Officer: Filing a complaint: Https://calgary.ca/bylaws/topics.html
- City of Calgary 311.
- For general information, questions or to report a bylaw infraction, please call 311 (from within Calgary) or 403-268- 2489 (from outside Calgary).
Homeowner Tips: Improving Homes for Mental Health
The Alberta Rural Development Network (ARDN) and the Alberta Real Estate Fund (AREF) have collaborated to provide interior building recommendations for the promotion of better mental well-being for homeowners. This design guide shows the importance of perception to control your environment in promoting independence and mental health.
- The study found that providing natural sunlight and bright light in rooms where a family spends most of their time can have a significant impact on mental wellness by reducing symptoms of depression. This can be achieved by installing white light with a brightness rating of 2500 lux.
- Spending time near windows that are facing nature views or are near artworks of nature can reduce the symptoms of anxiety.
- Having colors of interior spaces can promote psychological and physiological responses which can improve mental health. For example, cooler colors such as blue can provide the perception of a spacious, restful, and calm space. Whereas, warmer colors such as orange, red, and purple can promote the perception of an exciting and stimulating space. While the choice of color in one’s home can boost one’s mental health, it also empowers one as they are personalizing their own home.
- Positive distractions in the home can promote empowerment, productivity, and help in dealing with anxiety, stress, and sadness. Examples of positive distractions can be nature art, plants, and even having a clean home. Clutter, such as over-accessorizing can increase stress levels, and the ability to focus, and even affect one’s sleep.
In conclusion, the ARDN and AREF believe that the aspects of the home design listed in their design guide have proven to have a significant impact on the physical and mental well-being of others at a minimal cost. These proposed recommendations can overall increase self-esteem, resilience, independence, and a reduction in depression, anxiety, and other measures of stress. To discover more about the study, visit https://www.ruraldevelopment.ca/publications/psychology-of-aesthetics.
Travis, Scott., Aliasl, Elnaz., & Silverstone, Peter. (2020). Psychology of Aesthetics. Alberta Rural Development Network. Retrieved from: https://www.ruraldevelopment.ca/publications/psychology-of-aesthetics