Tips on how to find out if neighbors rent or own

Homeowners are more likely to renovate and modernize the property, while renters maintain the general neatness, and some are not particularly concerned about the house’s condition.

You can also see if there are any details in the design of the house or decoration of the garden that indicate the residents’ personal tastes. House owners often decorate the facades of their homes with beautiful signs with the street name and house number, hang bells and flowerpots, put up intricate mailboxes, and the like. So they want to “personalize” their home as much as possible. It is no use to do this for renters since they are here temporarily.

Paying attention to the general condition of the houses

One of the ways to determine whether your neighbors are renting or whether they are owners is to inspect the houses visually. Homeowners usually pay more attention to the appearance of their home and yard than renters and invest more money in maintaining order. Please note the condition:

  • external walls and roof;
  • car parking;
  • lawn, flower beds, trees;
  • yard decor.

Are you thinking about moving or buying a new home and would like to know who your neighbors are? Of course, knowing whether your potential neighboring house is rented or owned can be critical to your decision. With this knowledge, you can form a general impression of the well-being of the area as a whole. In this blog, we’ll look at several methods to find out if neighbours rent or own their homes.

Look for property records

How to find out if your neighbor is renting with the help of property records? You can search for information about property owners in your local council. As a rule, these institutions store all information of this kind. Many counties and municipalities have online databases where you can find property information. These records often include information such as

  • Owner’s name,
  • address,
  • sometimes the price and date of purchase.

So, knowing the property’s address, you can analyze this data and find out whether the owner or tenant lives there. Some online databases are accessible free of charge, while others require you to pay.

Check mortgage documents

The mortgage documents are legal obligations between the homeowner and the lender that detail the mortgage terms. Although you won’t directly access your neighbors’ mortgage documents, you can draw indirect conclusions.

For example, you might mistakenly receive your neighbor’s mail and notice it is from a creditor.

This method is very indirect and unreliable and may lead you to guess the status of the neighboring house.

Analysis of tax reports

Property tax records can provide important information about a home. Homeowners are responsible for paying property taxes, but renters are not.

You can access property tax records by requesting permission from your local tax assessor’s office or through online databases.

You can find the house’s address and who is listed in the taxpayer column there. If property taxes are paid by an individual and not a property management company, and if the taxpayer’s name is the same as the neighbors, they are the house’s owners.

Chat with residents

If you’re a people person, you can get to know the tenants and ask whether they are renters or owners. However, it is worth recognizing that this is a rather sensitive topic, and they may not tell you this or even refuse to communicate with a stranger.

However, you can be smarter and ask a question indirectly, such as about house maintenance or how long people have lived here. During this conversation, you can understand whether these are owners or tenants.

Browse housing rental sites

One effective way to determine if your neighbors rent is to look at rental websites. You can track the overall dynamics in the area or neighboring houses there. Large online platforms and local property management websites are good places to look for rental listings. Also, on some sites, you can track the history of a particular house.

Conduct investigation

If you have the opportunity to monitor real estate in the area, you can use it. This is an excellent option to understand if neighboring houses are for rent, as property management companies often place rental signs right in front of the houses. Also, these companies have staff engaged in repairs, maintenance, and other services for rental homes. Workers often drive cars with property management company logos.

These observations can help you figure out if your neighbors are renting their homes.

Use social networks and online platforms

Using social media to understand the situation in the area you are interested in may be a good idea. You can check out local Facebook groups where people often discuss current issues in the area, share information about events, and sometimes post rentals or housing ads.

You can also ask a question about the area’s general situation or a specific house. People often answer questions like this. It would help if you understood that this information would be subjective and based on personal judgments and impressions of residents. Still, you will be able to get the general picture.

The main thing is to be ethical and respect people’s boundaries, just as in personal communications. 


When buying a question, how to find out if a house is rented or owned plays an important role. Who lives nearby determines the well-being of the area in general and your comfort in particular.

Reddit and Quora users also provided some more ways to check who lives in a property:

  • To check the voters database
  • Track lease agreements
  • check tax rolls, etc. 

You can take that into account.

Observing the general condition of homes, reviewing municipal property records, talking with neighbors, and other sources of information can provide you with valuable information. However, when conducting this research, it is essential to remember the integrity and respect for the personal boundaries of the people around you.

Establishing good relationships with neighbors is the path to friendship and mutual respect, whether they are homeowners or homeowners.