Intrusive Neighbors? Pa. Ties for Third Nosiest State

By Hope Walborn | Jan. 4, 2024 | 3 min. read

Pennsylvania tied with Kentucky as the third nosiest state, according to a survey conducted by All Star Home.

Robert Frost may have been onto something when he wrote, “Good fences make good neighbors,” especially when those neighbors are particularly interested in your personal business. Intrusive neighbors may mean well, but setting boundaries can be good, too.

All Star Home conducted a survey to determine which states have the most and least nosy neighbors. They asked various questions about nosy neighbor activities that Americans have experienced, as well as what steps they have taken to handle them.

On a scale of zero to a hundred, Pennsylvania brought home a nosiness score of 85.2, tying with Kentucky for the third nosiest state.

Nationally, states in the east and southeast had the nosiest neighbors. Michigan and South Carolina ranked first and second most nosy, with respective scores of 90 and 87.8. Virginia (84.7) and Ohio (84.1) took fifth and sixth.

In contrast, neighbors farther west tended to be less intrusive. New Mexico (59.8), Minnesota (64), Washington (68.2), California (69) and Idaho (69.7) fell in the bottom five.

Ten states were excluded from the results due to insufficient data.

However, despite being a state with a high nosiness score, Pennsylvania is home to the third least nosy city: Philadelphia. With a score of 74.9, Philly’s neighbors are significantly less nosy than neighbors in Memphis, Louisville and Detroit – the top three nosiest cities.

Many people have a nosy neighbor, and sometimes they are the nosy neighbor. The survey reported that 86% of Americans said they had at least one overly-interested neighbor. Three out of every 10 Americans surveyed said they had lived next door to neighbors who liked to peek over fences or into their homes, and two in five reported that they have had neighbors who tended to show up unannounced.

Snooping behaviors were also considered in the survey. One in 12 have experienced a neighbor going through their mail or packages, but snooping can be a two-way street. Two in five Americans said they’ve looked up their neighbors’ property value, three in 10 have looked up their neighbors on social media and one in seven have looked up their neighbors’ jobs or employers online.

There may be no fences to deter internet stalking, but people have taken other measures. Nearly two in five people said they’ve confronted their nosy neighbors, and a small number of those surveyed have even gone as far as to move away.

Still, it’s usually easier to take other actions than to completely uproot. Nearly three in 10 people have put up a fence or greenery to block their neighbors’ view, and one in four have installed security cameras to keep an eye out for intrusive neighbors.

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