How to Make Your Own Neighborhood in The Sims 2

Updated on September 10, 2017
Amanda108 profile image

Amanda has been a Simmer (fan of The Sims games) since childhood. To this day she still discovers new ways to play and writes to share them.

"How to Create Your Own Neighborhood in The Sims 2"
"How to Create Your Own Neighborhood in The Sims 2" | Source

While The Sims 2 may technically have been pushed into the class "outdated" by The Sims 3 and The Sims 4, it is often considered by polls and articles to be the fan-favorite. Creating your very own neighborhood from scratch and watching it become a functioning city is one of the most satisfying features of the game, as neither of its sequels offers quite the same way of playing. But building a custom neighborhood in The Sims 2 can also be one of the most overwhelming and difficult tasks.

The following attempts to teach you, in brief summaries that I hope are easy to follow, how to do just this with as little work and as much fun as possible.


Planning and Plotting Pre-Playing

First, before you touch that mouse, what kind of neighborhood do you want? Think about:


From classic country to an island paradise, or the days of yore to a bustling downtown - or maybe you just want a quiet, little suburban neighborhood for your Sims. Then there's the "weird" (or creative, by another name) stuff you can design like modernized fairy tales or a post-apocalyptic land. Of course, some of these may require a strong imagination as your Sims won't actually recognize your theme. It's up to you to create it in your mind's eye through décor and playing the game the way you want it played.

House Styles

These can be a big factor in how your ultimate 'finished' Sims neighborhood looks. Keeping in mind whether you want a theme, be sure that the style of buildings match it. For example, cottages and castles with moats for princesses and witches. Ranch style houses and barns and cabins if your Sims tend to live off the land in your world. Mansions or trailers or apartments and so on and so on. But even if you've chosen not to theme your custom neighborhood and just let it build and thrive naturally, you may want a little organization - or not. Which leads me to...


When I created my Sims 2 custom neighborhood, Moon Island, I allowed any and all style of Sims to populate the area. But as time went on I started to rearrange and play with the lots in such a way that the buildings' locations were logical. A "trailer park" housed the low-income Sims in the game, small elongated houses grouped together. Along the beachfront sat my mansions. A quiet side street offered room for a mix-and-match setting of Tudors and ranch homes and the occasional Victorian style. My cemetery went off to the side, away from the land of happy families. Parks and beaches were scattered throughout. "Districts" rose up as shops and restaurants were opened near each other.


I know the concept of laws in The Sims 2 (or any Sims game, really) may not make much sense. Your Sims can pretty much do as they please. Giving Sims' laws is another form of exercising imagination in yourself. Grab a notebook or open a digital document (though personally I recommend the notebook as you can keep it in front of you whilst playing). If your Sims are to follow any rules you arbitrarily decide to make up, write them down and stick to them! It's a challenge.

For example, I once created a Sims 2 neighborhood in which there was a rule/theme that no Sim could obtain an official job. They had to earn their money through their own businesses or selling crops or paintings, etc. Maybe your Sims have a curfew. Or are not allowed to wear the color green. Or must not have more than two children (or the opposite: every Sim is required to produce at least one offspring?).

Moon Islands, generation three.
Moon Islands, generation three.

Neighborhood Names

  • Naming your Sims' neighborhood may be one of the most stressful parts! After all, it's the title you'll see every time you click the game. It represents your style, your effort, your care. No pressure, right?
  • Be sure to capitalize where appropriate.
  • Consider your neighborhood's theme, if any. If none, pick yourself a name that allows for change over the years without seeming odd.
  • Seek inspiration from the shape of the land you choose to build in.
  • Consider names from popular culture or cities in real life that you love and/or want to visit someday.
  • If all else fails, use an adjective/noun list combination format for finding a Sims 2 neighborhood name. Write down a bunch of adjectives, such as colors and weather elements and textures and aspects of nature. Follow with a separate list of nouns that you might find in a real town's name: city, town, hills, farms, falls, island, lake, moors, fields, meadow, forest. To name several.

Finally... Creating a Neighborhood in The Sims 2

Of course you need to actually create the new neighborhood. So, in the startup launcher click the square full of houses and a plus sign. Next, a screen will automatically come up and you can view the different neighborhood layouts available. You’ll be able to change the terrain, so don’t choose based on whether or not the picture shows desert or grass. For the terrain part, think about what kind of town you want to have and select something appropriate (example - concrete for a city).

That part was easy, right? In fact, you probably already knew all of it. Now things get trickier. You have to consider the above questions in need of answers and creative thoughts. AKA the design of your Sims' neighborhood.

But at least you have your own Sims 2 neighborhood! There are two ways to do things next: jump right in to playing and create a family, or plan a general layout before things start getting crowded. I highly recommend the second one. Decide what kind of decorations your town should have and place them. Put down some houses that are pre-built, either by you or the game, so things don’t look so empty and give them actual addresses so that the streets will have unofficial names.

Tip: create communities within your community by grouping houses by style or price range - it wouldn’t look very realistic to have a shack next to a mansion. Pick out the areas you want your community lots to go in. This will be time consuming, but things will look so nice and organized by the time you get around to playing.

Essential Community Lots

Graveyard – Though not necessary in the beginning, eventually you’ll want some place to put all those stones and urns (unless you like your houses being haunted...).

Restaurant – Sims can order groceries over the phone without a grocer actually in the neighborhood, so this isn’t so much for food as it is for socialization. It’s a place that can be used for both dates and family outings.

Library – Even the poorest families can usually afford a bookshelf, but what about computers? Easels?

Clothes Store – They can wear the same thing everyday, sure, but how boring is that?


Presumably you have already decided on any themes by the time you start laying out the houses and décor, but think about it some more now. This is your founding family. You really don’t want to get bored with them. Go a step further and take the time to give your Sims bios even!


Tired of seeing a blank neighborhood as the representation of your now-bustling city? Take the picture you wish to use and save it as a .png, preferably with a 4x3 ratio. Name it N0(Number of neighborhood, ex.- 04, and minus the parenthesis)_Neighborhood.png. Then, move it to the neighborhood’s directory.

© 2009 Amanda


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Can u have a video in your custom neighbourhood


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)