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Cool Web Sites: RottenNeighbor.com

A Web site gives house-hunters a peek at the pitfalls of potential neighborhoods—and lets you tattle on careless dog owners, crying babies, funky-smelling kitchens, and more.

Finding the right apartment, condo, or house is difficult enough. But what if you’ve found the perfect place—and on the other side of the fence (or wall), you have less-than-perfect neighbors?

Launched last summer, RottenNeighbor.com helps house-hunters check out the neighbors before moving so much as a sofa.  Start by entering your Zip code or street address to get a map of your neighborhood. Little red houses pop up on the map where someone’s logged a complaint with the site; green houses appear where neighbors have posted nice things. Empathize with someone’s rotten neighbor? You can rate their post with one to five stars. Click on the “Interesting Neighbors” tab to read the stories drawing the most comments.

Among the moans and groans from our area this week were neighbors who let trash fall off their balcony in Alexandria. In Kensington, a poster complained about dogs that bark 24 hours a day. One resident near McPherson Square in DC complained about a neighbor who blares country music and dresses like a cowboy—even though he’s from Connecticut.

On the other hand, one Alexandria resident said he lives among neighbors who are friendly and look out for each other. Another  in Chevy Chase called his block “quite simply, the best.”