Six Totally Legal Ways to Find Out Who Lives in Your Neighborhood

Houses in a row

Do you want to find out who lives on your street? Whether you’ve lived in your home for years or are merely thinking of buying a property, there are plenty of reasons to get to know your neighbors before you move in. 

In October 2022, everyone became obsessed with an intriguing Netflix series called The Watcher. Based on a true story, The Watcher follows a couple who buy their dream home before being relentlessly stalked by someone in their neighborhood. In real life, the couple was so spooked by the events that transpired that they never even took occupancy of their home. As a result, they sold their home for much less than it was worth. 

While that’s an extreme example, it just goes to show that it’s worth knowing who you’ll be moving next door to. So, you might ask, how do I find out who lives in my neighborhood? Don’t worry; you don’t need to be a detective to find out who lives on your street - and you don’t need to knock on doors, either. 

How to find out who lives on your street?

A few years ago, it was pretty easy to find people who live on a street. Names and numbers and addresses were publicly listed in the phone book, and you could easily look them up. Even if you didn’t consult the phone book, neighbors had no qualms about knocking on the doors of new residents and introducing themselves. 

Times have changed. Neighborhoods have become bigger and less personal. Most people spend more time at work than at home, and we’re far more safety conscious about who we let into our homes than ever before. You are far more likely to order a cup of sugar online than borrow one from your neighbor. 

Still, it’s a good idea to know who you are sharing your space with. Perhaps you want to find out whether there are any registered sex offenders or known pedophiles living nearby - it may make you feel differently about the safety of your neighborhood or your children. Perhaps you simply want to know if there is anyone nearby who shares a common history, culture, or interest with you.

Whatever the reason, you can conduct a simple “who lives on a street search” online to answer your most pressing questions about the neighborhood. So, how do you find out who lives on your street? 


1. Make a list of addresses

Start by writing down the addresses on your street or the addresses of the people you would like to investigate. You can Google the addresses or look them up online in other ways. (We’ll dig into that in a few minutes).

2. Visit your county government website

Visit your county government website to find out more about the residents in your street. It’s free, although it’s not always the most user-friendly way to look up information. You’ll probably be able to find a lot of information about home ownership and sale information, although you can’t always find information about renters this way. 

3. Conduct a deeper search

Not all county assessors have websites. You may need to find the assessor’s office in person or search the record of deeds online to conduct a “who lives on my street search.” You’ll find a lot of information here because assessors use the information for various administrative purposes. You can choose to search for your specific street by typing in your street and looking at the results that pop up for all of the homes on your street.

4. Download the Nextdoor app

These neighborhood apps enable neighbors to chat with one another about everything - from barking dogs to suspicious characters and break-ins. Of course, not all neighbors are on the app or willing to disclose personal information, so unless they volunteer information, there isn’t much you can do about it. 

5. Throw a block party

This is one of the more fun and social ways of getting to know the neighbors, but again, you might not have all of your neighbors show up…and perhaps you don’t want to become acquainted with every neighbor on your block! It also doesn’t solve the problem of getting to know the neighbors before you buy a home. Ideally, you want your search to be anonymous but thorough. 

6. Conduct a reverse address lookup

Unless you feel like pretending to be a census worker and knocking on each door individually, using a reverse address lookup is the easiest and quickest way to find out more about each home on your street. The reverse address lookup will reveal more about the current and past residents of a house, the physical location information of the house, the phone numbers linked to each address, and more. Most of these searches are free, but more detailed information may require paying a fee. 

Why Conduct a Reverse Address Search?

When it comes to your personal safety, you can’t be too cautious. There’s nothing worse than moving into a house and expecting to live in it for twenty years or more, only to end up regretting your decision because you feel unsafe. 

There are other financial benefits too. Looking up information about the properties bought and sold in the neighborhood in recent years can also determine whether you’ve paid a fair market value for your home, and you might be able to identify when a great deal comes on the market near your home. You can use the information you uncover to negotiate a better price or snap up a great deal. 

You never know what you will uncover. Hopefully, your search will confirm that your neighborhood is a safe place to live and a great investment in your future. If not, doing a search can help you dodge a bullet. 

Once you find out who lives on your street, you’ll be better poised to know whether it's former or the latter. Don’t hesitate to conduct a free and easy reverse address lookup - knowledge is power, and you can’t afford not to know.



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