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Anti-Social Behaviour from your Neighbours

By: Jeff Durham - Updated: 17 Jan 2017 | comments*Discuss
 
Neighbours Problem Action Behavior

Anti-social behaviour can put a tremendous amount of strain on people and, if left unchecked, it can ruin a community all too soon, with disputes between neighbours being a common problem. There are a whole range of laws governing anti-social behaviour, which can lead to legal action being taken against the perpetrator(s).

Anti-social Problems

Anti-social behaviour can incorporate a whole range of issues. These can include problems with:

  • Noisy neighbours
  • Drug taking and drinking on the streets
  • Pets – particularly dangerous dogs and Barking Dogs
  • Litter and graffiti
  • Vandalism
  • Racism
  • Teenage gangs or other forms of intimidating groups or individuals such as young and unruly children
  • Abandoned cars
  • Fly tipping

However, it’s important to remember that in certain instances, anti-social behaviour can mean entirely different things to different people. As neighbours, it’s always necessary to realise that we will often have different values, beliefs and opinions, and so what someone might object to and see as anti-social behaviour may not be covered by any of the legislation. For example, if you like to mow your lawn every week, but your next door neighbours takes a more relaxed attitude towards keeping on top of their garden and only mows it every month or so, then that wouldn’t be classed as anti-social behaviour under the current legislation.

How To Tackle Anti-social Behaviour

There are numerous different approaches to tackling anti-social behaviour involving neighbours living close by. The action to take will often be determined by the type of behaviour involved and the person(s) causing the problem. For example, how you deal with your next door neighbour who is playing their music too loudly after midnight is likely to be very different from how you’d tackle the problem of a gang of teenage youths jumping on top of cars in the street.

In certain situations, you may feel that the problem is serious enough to dial 999 to get the police involved or, at the other end of the scale, you might be able to resolve the problem by having an amicable conversation with a neighbour. Remember that neighbours may not even be aware that they are causing a problem.

In other circumstances, however, your best course of action is likely to involve contacting the relevant department within your local authority or alternatively, getting in touch with your local anti-social behaviour co-ordinator, who is likely to be a member of your local police force. You can find out who that is on the Home Office’s website by simply inputting your postcode. Within that website, there are also details about how you can contact your local Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnership Representative.

What Happens Next?

If your complaint is investigated, you may be asked to gather evidence by the antisocial behaviour team, which might include keeping a diary or log of the offending behaviour. Depending upon the seriousness of the issue, the police may be called in straight away. Should a particular case go to court, you may also be asked to give evidence.

What About Possible Reprisals?

Many people who are asked to testify against their neighbours in court are frightened to do so for fear of reprisals. However, it can be arranged for you to give evidence anonymously and you do have Confidentiality Rights. Also, a police officer, a doctor, health worker, council official or teacher can also give evidence on your behalf if you feel particularly vulnerable.

Other Solutions

In many cases of antisocial behaviour involving neighbours or other members of the community, a resolution can often be obtained before the matter even gets to court. Official warning letters and interviews can sometimes be sufficient to stop the problem, but other methods include drawing up Acceptable Behaviour Agreements or Parenting Contracts as well as Fixed Penalty Notices and Noise Abatement Notices. The courts also have the power to issue Anti-Social Behaviour Orders (ASBOs) and can resort to other methods such as dispersal orders and demoted tenancies, for example. Read more about how to apply for an anti social behaviour order.

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We've had problems with neighbours for over 5 years now due to parking ,even given an anti social behaviour for put a wheelie bin out at 5am in the morning LOL it's been terrible. As of early last year the elderly neighbour beside us kept going in to the garden each time one of our phones rang , listen up walls etc, ours is only a ground floor maisonettes theirs is a 2bed house. They have a cupboard under their stairs what runs along our lounge wall ,this is where he is all the time his in. He even moves his car from outside so we think their out and creeps out the side gate when he goes to collect it, its creepy when I'm in alone hearing noises at the wall. Ive approached him and told him please knock the door and come in if there's something he wants to hear he justed starred at me. I just don't know what to do it's a year nearlly
Beethoven - 17-Jan-17 @ 12:37 PM
New Year's Eve 2016 having a small party myself my husband and my 13yr old daughter and her friend. No alcohol involved just planning a joyful night. At 6.30pm put the karaoke on at a reasonable level (video evidence of this) at 7.45 the neighbour knocks the door and was in my husbands face stating turn the music down as her 42 yr old partner wants to sleep as it's the 1yr anniversary of his fathers death. My husband is still inside my house and has not left the premises. We reasonably explain (no shouting just normal talking) that it's New Year's Eve. And she said "he wants to sleep". I then say "and" she then shouts I'm phoning the police and she storms off. Myself and my husband then both say together go on then as my husband shuts the door he said F@&" off. 2 mins later my door is being aggressively banged approximately 10 times we get up and as we approach the door the partner shouts"come on you c&£! Do you want some come on" at that he kicks and punches my door causing it to bow in cracking and splitting the wood. At no time did I open my door and I shouted I'm phoning the police. His partner was shouting him to go back in the house and he went shouting "f£&king phone them" When the police came we explained the issue and the damage to my door he stated that it's new year and that we were entitled to party and the level of the music was ok. He did state that because my husband swore at her as she walked away it was an offence (I'm unsure of this as it was not shouted and inside my own property which we own) we explained that if we had been approached in a better manner he would not of swore and the officer agreed and said he understood. Now the officer went round to the neighbour who was flat out with drink and his partner was denying that he had caused damage and stated that the door bangs anyway. The officer has said it's mine and my husbands word against his and hers. But how can this be when he was heavily intoxicated and possibly won't remember what he has done. Please help as I'm at my wits end. We have never had issues with any of the neighbors and this is totally out of the blue. The neighbour has stated he is suffering with depression but where does my family come into this my daughter was distraught scared and could not sleep for the fear of him coming around again. Please please help,,,
Fed up Mel - 1-Jan-17 @ 10:23 AM
I have a neighbor who falsely accused me of harassing her family after the boyfriend acted inappropriately towards my daughter. She compiled false evidence and because i could not attend court she worn the case an now i have to pay her £16,000( that is my annual salary). But that is not enough because she has gone as far as calling my job and accusing me of harassing her. I am almost losing my job, she is constantly calling the police and council that am either abusing her or making noise which has never been substantiated but she always manages to pay them a recorded video of the music i was playing. I feel that both the police and council believe her and not me. She is my immediate neighbor but she got an injunction and am not supposed to be within 20 meters of her but we all use the same entrance. Am currently depressed and cannot go back to work as am a bus driver. My doctor has stopped me from working due to the strong medication am currently taking. She has also got a camera in her kitchen window that is recording me as i have to pass by her house to her to my door. I really nee help as i have tried to avoid her, tried to talk to her an she refused an the authorities are not helping.
Ash - 23-Nov-16 @ 9:09 PM
What can one do if your neighbors moved in recently, few months back and constantly swears and tells his wife he is going to bash her head in or kill her. The kids scream so loud, the man talks and screams on top of his voice, dogs barking for nothing, you can't hear your tv, no more relaxing outside, can't open doors or windows, had to move our main bedroom and sleeping in front of house. Have spoken to them but to no satisfaction, tired and can't sleep anymore. thanks
Tired - 19-Nov-16 @ 6:04 PM
The neighbors play loud music at night baby boy up crying and kids all hours off night no respect at all don't sort the kids out and cars parked on pavement people walk in road on way to school with kids someone gonna be knocked down can out be done about these neighbours it's a joke don't listen at all to no one
Tara - 16-Nov-16 @ 8:47 AM
I live in a residential flat and for two and a half years I have suffered from constant machinery noise coming from the flat above me. Local space together with newham council owns this property and despite numerous complaints , letters visits to their offices nothing has been done. Newham council in an email admitted that the tenants owns industrial machinery. To date the tenants continue to run a business and no action whatsoever has been taken by local space or newham council. I do not have the enjoyment of my home or do I enjoy some quiet time.
Noise nuisance - 4-Nov-16 @ 11:20 AM
AP - Your Question:
I have owned my apartment for 9 years and 2 years ago new tenanted neighbors moved in upstairs. Since then they have called the police on us twice. Once for having a dinner party and 2nd for having a New Years Eve party. They have now contacted the Council and Property Management Company. They will not reveal who they are and no one can show evidence that we are disturbing them with noise. I have even invited the council round to conduct an audit. I now feel I am being harassed by them, yet we are getting the letters. Sometimes accusing us when we are actually out of the country. I have no evidence that it is our neighbors upstairs and have no idea what to do other then sell and move elsewhere. It is becoming quite frustrating and distressing. The accusations are in fact entirely false. Help.

Our Response:
Have you made a note of the dates and the accusations etc? This will help you prove that most of the accusations are false. Perhaps you could then consider dropping a polite note giving dates/times and suggesting that they are intimidating/harassing you and that you may consider reporting this.
ProblemNeighbours - 27-Oct-16 @ 11:28 AM
I have owned my apartment for 9 years and 2 years ago new tenanted neighbors moved in upstairs. Since then they have called the police on us twice. Once for having a dinner party and 2nd for having a New Years Eve party. They have now contacted the Council and Property Management Company. They will not reveal who they are and no one can show evidence that we are disturbing them with noise. I have even invited the council round to conduct an audit. I now feel I am being harassed by them, yet we are getting the letters. Sometimes accusing us when we are actually out of the country. I have no evidence that it is our neighbors upstairs and have no idea what to do other then sell and move elsewhere. It is becoming quite frustrating and distressing. The accusations are in fact entirely false. Help.
AP - 25-Oct-16 @ 3:58 PM
I have moved in my flat 2009 have no end on anti social problems from Neigbour below It started with loud music the noise team court them then it was sitting on my gas meter which broke I took pictures of them sitting on my gas meter now they don't do this they throw stones instead it very hard to prove they are doing it but I have seen the son throw stones Would love advice on what I can do next
Rafi - 15-Oct-16 @ 1:19 PM
my upstairs neighbour enjoys keeping me awake at night by stumping on his floor im lucky to 4 hours sleep per night
dale - 14-Oct-16 @ 12:43 PM
tammy113 - Your Question:
I've had on going issues with neighbours for years now my little boy is 6 years old and he has disabilitys (brain heart etc) they call my son names throw things at my Windows bang my door early hours of the morning and through out the night things have got the point my son jumps when he heard loud noises and wets the bed cos he thinks the scary ladys are going to come and get him 2 weeks ago me and my son got pushed down the stairs by this woman's partner while the woman stood there laughing calling me and my son names I don't no we're to go or what to do anymore not even sure who to trust.

Our Response:
Have you reported this to the police?
ProblemNeighbours - 30-Sep-16 @ 11:31 AM
i have a neighbour who is disruptive he as paid young ones to damage my car,ex paint stripper on the roof ,punctures ,sweareing at my wife,sat in the small car park sunbathing,he is in his seventies im 60 id love to smack him then i would get done.ive told my landlord for 6 years but nothing as been done without proof.ive had the police up to him and all they say is he a very pleasant man no action taken im at my wits end il have to do something no one else is doing nothing.
pat - 29-Sep-16 @ 11:58 AM
I've had on going issues with neighbours for years now my little boy is 6 years old and he has disabilitys (brain heart etc) they call my son names throw things at my Windows bang my door early hours of the morning and through out the night things have got the point my son jumps when he heard loud noises and wets the bed cos he thinks the scary ladys are going to come and get him 2 weeks ago me and my son got pushed down the stairs by this woman's partner while the woman stood there laughing calling me and my son names I don't no we're to go or what to do anymore not even sure who to trust..
tammy113 - 29-Sep-16 @ 11:51 AM
please help me, i am a single male in my forties who lives in quite a new flat in a block i am private renting and i am on the second floor of three the lady opposite me always seems to leave her street door open when she is in during the day , so all her interior noises , her phone must ring about 20 times a day , her hoover , any guests she has i get all her noise , i have no privacy whatsoever i have to use my mobile phone downstairs out of the building because any noise i make she will hear ,i dont flush my chain that often , i listen to my tv really low, my computer through headphones, dont street doors have a function, are they not a privacy from other neighbours? do they not have a function? she is an oldish lady but shes the worst neighbour i have ever had i complained in the estate agent about it they all just laughed as i gave them five thousand pound to live for another 6 months like a prisoner as i type this now its open
gez - 26-Sep-16 @ 2:18 PM
The flat above me has been throwing litter out of his Windows. Glass bottles, cigarette ends, cans, even condoms! At the back of the property into the communal garden. I have taken photos and sent them to the housing, they are currently building a case to take him to court. Is there any other action that I can take? Is he breaking any laws. Thanks
Benny - 23-Sep-16 @ 4:28 PM
Fi61 - Your Question:
Neighbours are self confessed nudists. Each to their own.BUT.he is regularly seen on his drive in only a short t shirt.leaving nothing to the imagination. I worry that my young grandchildren may see him. What can be done?

Our Response:
Ask him if he'll cover up more when not in the privacy of his back garden. If it persists or you are concerned then contact your local PCSO.
ProblemNeighbours - 14-Sep-16 @ 12:01 PM
Tim- Your Question:
Appreciate advice.I am an owner occupier living in a split level maisonette. About 6 Aonths ago tenants moved into the maisonette next door. We share a porch and these tenants smoke in the porch area flicking ash onto the grass and spiting on the ground. Butt ends have also sometimes been stubbed out on the grass and common ground.Sometimes they sit on the shared access path leading from the font doors to the road blocking access while smoking, drinking and speaking on mobile phones. I have politely said 'excuse me' as I have tried to use the pathway but they have refused to move and I have had to walk around them on the grass to get past. I have asked them a few times not to smoke in the shared amenities , but they have not chained there behaviour. The last time I asked they swore at me using vile language. Some time ago I spoke to the owner of the property (he used to live there but now rents it.out) He did say he would deal with it but nothing changed, In fact things seemed to get worse. I am worried about speaking to the owner again in case things escalate. My question is does this count as anti-social behaviour and what can be done? Any advice would be appreciated …thanks

Our Response:
It's more likely to be a civil issue as the neighbour is breaching the terms of the shared access etc. It's probably not sufficient for the police to take action. You should try the owner again...that landlord is after all in the best position to take action against his tenants. If that's not successful, ask your local Citizens' Advice Bureau whether civil action is feasible.
ProblemNeighbours - 13-Sep-16 @ 10:08 AM
Neighbours are self confessed nudists. Each to their own.......BUT.......he is regularly seen on his drive in only a short t shirt......leaving nothing to the imagination. I worry that my young grandchildren may see him. What can be done?
Fi61 - 12-Sep-16 @ 6:11 PM
appreciate advice...I am an owner occupierliving in a split level maisonette . About 6 Aonthsago tenantsmoved into the maisonette next door. We share a porch and these tenantssmoke inthe porch area flicking ash onto the grass and spiting on the ground. Butt ends have also sometimes been stubbed out on the grass and common ground.Sometimes they sit on the sharedaccess pathleading from the font doors to the road blocking access while smoking, drinking and speaking on mobile phones. i have politelysaid 'excuse me' as i have tried to use the pathway but they have refused to move and i have had to walk around them on the grass to get past. I have asked them a few times not to smoke in the shared amenities , but they have not chained there behaviour. The last time i asked they swore at me using vile language. Some time ago i spoke to the owner of the property (he used to live there but now rentsit.out)He did say he would deal with it but nothing changed, In fact things seemed to get worse. I am worried about speaking to the owner again in case things escalate. My question is does this count as anti-social behaviour and what can be done?Any advice would be appreciated …thanks
Tim - 11-Sep-16 @ 2:04 AM
For coming up to three years now, me and my family have been dealing with "neighbours from hell". MY family and I have lived in the same house for 19years. As soon as they moved in three years ago, they demanded that we turn off our back garden lights - we use low energy bulbs to create minimal light in our garden for our dog, due to foxes in the area. They then demanded we remove our conifer trees that have been there for 10 years to create privacy for a three foot fence. We said that we would agree if there was a higher fence - as he had recently moved he said he couldnt afford it, so we said we would get it done and he can pay later if he chose to or not pay at all (it wouldve been on his boundary). He seemed fine about this agreement - however the next day his partner came storming over and verbally abused my mum, calling us money grabbing. We ended up putting up two new fence panels on our boundary and keeping the trees, as we couldnt do the fence and wanted the privacy from them. They use garden waste in their garden for their bbq, which is more like a bbq as the flames have been so major they nearly set our tree on fire. He has now started trying to antagonise us by blaring his repeated house music which causes our floors, doors and glass cabinets to shake. We have called police and council but nothing is changing.The police have only just told us that they accused us of racism because on St. George's day and during the Euro 2016 we put up an England flag. We don't know what to do anymore, it's getting too much, we have tried to speak to them but they verbally attack us, they've banged on our front door before getting in our face. What more can we do?
Ellie - 10-Sep-16 @ 9:45 AM
We have a next door neighbour with two kids and since we moved in 8 years ago life has been hell for us.In the first three months of moving in we had an emergency with the electrics at 6.45pm in the evening and called the electrican who had to drill the wire out.The next door neighbour came round and began to assault us if we didn't stop.We apologiesed stating it wouldn't be long.Since then we noticed they are allowed to make noise but we aren't whilst they scream and fight on a daily basis.The police have been called several times to no avail because the neighbours lies or puts on the tears of they are the victims and their young children were asleep.Over the years they appear to have control issues whereby they have refused to repair the fence on the boundary they are supposed to maintain and we have tried to keep to ourselves to no avail by putting up a green screen but after getting a puppy its been terrible as they will goad the dog along and he is so excited just on that side!We have now erected a new costly fence on their boundary to protect ourselves and offer our dog some stability. Four years ago they gained planning permission for an extension which is not completed to date as its a pay as you go job.They tried to build further out and the council was called to stop itThey have not paid for the surveyors to date but their priorities are not in the right place even to share the costs of a new fence which is their side to maintain. They are so angry that I reported their illegal actions re the extension that they to date are defaming my name with the neighbours.And so low can they stoop when they paid a neighbour to lie for them re our dog being a nuisance to the council.How in hell can she hear my dog when she is 20 houses away!The child from that house has attempted to assault me and the dog several times.The Police have not done anything as they think its a civil mater. They have now asked the neighbour 20 house's away to lie on their behalf by complaining to the council that our puppy is barking whilst our dog cannot enjoy his space in the garden due to the goading by the neighbour.This is fraud when you make false accusations and we will be notifying the Police who probably won't do anything which is why these neighbours are continuing to do as they want.
jo - 9-Sep-16 @ 1:26 AM
Dave m - Your Question:
Recently had a family move in the street, they constantly swear and shout in the street. The kids also use swear words which I dont think they realise the full meaning of. We ve tried speaking to these people on a very calm level but they just give you a load of mouth in return. Its so loud we can often hear the foul language within our house with the windows shut. Its unacceptable. The police sent a pcso to have a word after it was reported but this has done virtually nothing to stop it. What else can you do to stop this behaviour??

Our Response:
Report it again to the police -Section 4 - Powers to disperse groups The Act gives the police powers to disperse groups of two or more people who have gathered in any public place, if their presence 'has resulted or is likely to result in any members of the public being intimidated, harassed, alarmed or distressed'. This does not however apply to authorised protests or pickets. The police may also accompany any child under the age of 16 years to their home between 9pm and 6am.
ProblemNeighbours - 6-Sep-16 @ 2:23 PM
Hi Following from earlier post, tenant in next door flat is getting worse.Turns music up when we close our curtains to go to bed. More problems with rubbish in her front yard, and several times her child has been seen outside the house in pyjamas in early morning (pre 07:00am). T
Xpatjock - 5-Sep-16 @ 9:55 PM
Recently had a family move in the street,they constantly swear and shout in the street. The kids also use swear words which i dont think they realise the full meaning of. We ve tried speaking to these people on a very calm level but they just give you a load of mouth in return. Its so loud we can often hear the foul language within our house with the windows shut. Its unacceptable. The police sent a pcso to have a word after it was reported but this has done virtually nothing to stop it. What else can you do to stop this behaviour??
Dave m - 5-Sep-16 @ 2:09 PM
The once semi rural area I have lived in for 15 years has now been ruined by new houses being built and kids playing football outside my bungalow and screaming and shouting, have approached the parents but they don't care
Julie - 4-Sep-16 @ 1:26 PM
My neighbour have lots of drink on a night then climb over my fence and knock on my wife.does or boot with a coin or something similar and rap quite a few times sometimes they will do it three foursomesa night then leave it for awhile and start doing it again. My son has put me a cctv camera over the front door to try to photo them doing it, but I got A grained photo of them putting a cover over the camera lens you can just see the top of their heads. I really do not know what is wrong g with them. My son seems to think they are seeing how far they can push me for a reaction but why? I've never done anything to them.Also my camera keeps saying tampered with but I can't see anyone on photo can they mess with WiFi waves. I am getting as I do.t want to be in my own house. Peace is all i want.
Worried pensioner - 2-Sep-16 @ 8:39 AM
We have a problem with tenant in one of the flats next to our house.As well as loud music etc which we have raised with the council, she has regular visits from what can best be described as lowlife who bring all sorts of rubbish to her, sit on our front wall while waiting if she isnt in, lean bikes against our wall, etc.Her front yard is full of bags of old clothes and other garbage which one of her boyfriends occasionally cleans the front yard but mostly that job is done by tenants of the other apt. Is there snything we can do?She is in a ptivate tenancy via DSS
Xpatjock - 27-Aug-16 @ 4:57 PM
I live in a block of flats and the new neighbours of two months are constantly banging from 9pm until around 4am every night. I've tried speaking to them as they are right above mine and my young sons bedrooms but they continue to bang. I work early mornings and my children have school. The banging is affecting our sleep, making me have to take time off work and my sons not feel well whilst at school, I suffer from severe anxiety so can't keep confronting them every night and this has been making it worse.
Ali - 26-Aug-16 @ 1:56 AM
We have had new neighbours move in about 8 months ago. We are now suffering constant loud music, swearing and shouting on a daily basis. This is affecting at least five households as they can be heard through our houses into the street at the front. We are unable to use our gardens and have to close the doors/Windows to dull the noise. Need advice as it's making our lives a total misery. The woman swears at her children all day which then causes them to scream and cry. They have no regard for anyone in the neighbourhood.
Amandawh - 25-Aug-16 @ 12:32 PM
Trixy - Your Question:
My next door neighbour and our other neighbour smoke weed in his van, which I dont have an issue with my issue is our drves are on angles so he is virtualy looking into my living room so I have to tilt my blinds which I object to in the day time too, I cant even sit at my kitchen table eating dinner without the looking in very annoying what should I do thanks

Our Response:
There's not much you can do if that's the way your houses/drives are constructed. If you have reason to believe he is actually watching you rather than just sitting in his van, you could consider reporting him for harrassment
ProblemNeighbours - 25-Aug-16 @ 12:22 PM
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