By Vanessa Fielding
My home is located in Harbour View Estates, just north of Lake Worth and west of Saginaw. Our “Best of the Best ‘hood’” as we call it, is 152 homesites on a minimum of an acre, some more and some less but none more than two.
Our community is about 30 years old, and each home hosts its own aerobic septic system and water well. We are fortunate that we are still zoned county and have fought the good fight to keep it that way (hence no Fort Worth city taxes).
There are both pros and cons to this, though; we don’t get the perks of city benefits such as using the dump, and we pay separate fees for trash pickup (no recycling unless we organize it ourselves). When trouble arises, we wait for the Tarrant County Sheriff or the Eagle Mountain Volunteer Fire Department to arrive.
We also take care of our own. Some years ago, one of our residents who is a former Marine instated the Quick Response Force. The QRF is a team of concerned citizens that can be called up when the need arises. This came about after a block party that quickly got out of hand at a vacant (soon to be foreclosed on) home. Even a private gated entry doesn’t keep everyone out when the gate code is plastered on Twitter.
Hundreds of cars lined our roads and blocked driveways before the Sheriff could even be called, and our QRF quickly engaged the trespassers. They were escorted out as lights and sirens arrived as backup. Welcome to the Wild West. The QRF has also stopped a homeless man from breaking into a woman’s home who was home alone with a newborn baby. All with just a quick text.
Our neighborhood is governed by the not-so-popular Homeowners Association. Fortunately, we have an excellent relationship with ours, and our Board of Directors truly listens to our concerns. My personal opinion is HOAs get a bad rep. They are a “must have” in this day and age of the “I do what I want” attitude, but if my property value is affected by you parking your car in your front yard, it’s time for the HOA to intervene.
My family and I have lived in this neighborhood for almost 20 years with no plans of vacating. My husband and I built our home together when we had a young daughter, and we have two kids who are grown now and almost ready to fly. I served on the Board of Directors for our community as well as participated in almost all types of community events.
We have developed the best of friends from our connections in our neighborhood such as travel buddies, Friday night happy hours, carpool queens… our true village. Moms who would clip my kids’ toenails and dads who come kill a skunk when my husband is out of town. We have nicknames for almost every house in the neighborhood based on an occurrence or a personality.
My suggestion is to get to know your neighbors. I am always amazed at folks who have no idea who lives next door. My neighbors feed my dogs and turn off my sprinklers. Reach out and make friends with the folks around you. You may never know what you are missing.
Harbour View Estates
Total population: 2,413
Female: 47% | Male: 53%
80 and older: 0%
No degree: 3%
High school: 24%
Some college: 27%
Bachelor’s degree: 31%
White: 75% | Hispanic: 14% | Black: 10% | Asian: 0% | Two or more: 1%
Click on the link to view the schools’ Texas Education Agency ratings:
Source: Census Reporter