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What Should we do About Our Neighbour's Complaining?

By: Jeff Durham - Updated: 21 Oct 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Noisy Neighbours Neighbourhood Noise

Q.

We have a flat within a 1930's converted house. Since we've had new neighbours they keep complaining about the noise from our flat (mainly the bedroom which is above thiers), but we didn't have any problems with the people who lived there before. We can hear the same noise from the flat above which we have put down to the fact that this is a conversion and not purpose built.

We have tried to rent out the flat but the neighbours seem to keep pushing our tenants out. We have tried to talk to them and put rugs down etc... but they keep knocking on the door and complaining to our tenants. What should we do?

(Miss Marie Rice, 11 November 2008)

A.

This would seem to be a case of a house conversion where sound insulation seems to have not been too high up on the agenda when it was converted into separate flats.

You say that previous tenants in the flat in question didn’t have any problem with noise from your flat and that you, too, can hear the same level of noise from the flat above, so it would appear that you have accepted that the design of the house conversion does not lend itself too well to good sound insulation. Nevertheless, there would seem to be some sort of problem in that you keep receiving complaints.

There are strict laws governing noise nuisance under the Environmental Protection Act 1990 but they are usually more associated with issues such as loud music, barking dogs, shouting and arguing and lots of banging and loud children. Certain other factors also come into play with regards to noise levels after 11pm at night. However, you’ve given no indication here that any of the above is the issue here.

You’ve also taken some steps to try to resolve the matter by putting down rugs to try to reduce the noise levels somewhat. Therefore, based solely on the evidence you’ve presented here, it would appear that you have fussy neighbours who would prefer to live in complete silence, in spite of the fact that they have chosen to live in a place with thin walls. However, without knowing the facts, that is difficult to say.

You also say that you’ve tried to reason with the complainants but that this hasn’t achieved anything. Therefore, to obtain a resolution it may well be that you’ll need to challenge your neighbours into making a complaint.

Tell them that in your opinion, you feel you are doing nothing wrong and that if they wish to complain, they should contact the local Environment Department and ask them to investigate the matter. If you or your tenants are truly not making excess noise and the problem is simply one of thin walls, ceilings and floors, it may well be that the investigation team will simply discard their complaint.

If that’s the outcome, then theoretically, if they are ‘pushing your tenants out’ as you say, then you may have a case to take action against them for harassment, depending on what kind of evidence you have of that. On the other hand, the Environment Department could rule in their favour and force you into taking action to make further Soundproofing Improvements To Your Property.

Ideally, coming to an amicable agreement or going to see a mediation service is the best way forward. However, if this isn’t an option, the only way forward would seem to be letting the Environmental Health Department decide if there’s a problem or not.

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I have read all the above accounts and sympathise with both sides.Loud music, barking dogs and running children can all have a serious effect on both physical and mental health. I have lived in many flats over the years and had many more neighbours and it is amazing the difference a little consideration and communication can make; such as dropping a pillow between the headboard and the wall! My latest place was great when i had the junkie upstairs, despite his choice of visitors and their dogs but now I am stuck with a pair of middle class students who are completely nocturnal and think it perfectly acceptable to come home from a night club and have screaming drunken rows, throwing things and slamming doors at three thirty in the morning. They have lied plausibly to the housing association about their activities (I have been forced to call the police twice.) and now my noise logs have been discarded, I am cast as the crazy downstairs, even though I tried to ask them nicely and am now expected to pay for expensive monitoring equipment myself, as the housing association appear to have labeled me a crank Thing is, I asked for soundproofing to be installed before they moved in, since their kitchen floor, above my bedroom is so thin it vibrates and the lampshade shakes when anyone walks across it and shoes sound like gunshots on the hard laminate floor. The housing association turned me down flat, even though I offered to pay for the materials as the bedsit upstairs was then being renovated. I think they thought that everyone else would want it. Though it would have done nothing for the shrieking, the door slamming and the running back and forth along the communal hall at three thirty in the morning (My downstairs ceiling in this victorian conversion), it would have toned down all that but in the end, I have been forced to simply abandon my bedroom, move my bed into the tiny lounge downstairs in the basement and live in the kitchen while I consider what to do next; especially since I have now been accused of stealing their post; the delivery of which was always sketchy at best, due to the rather obscure address and despite the fact I was at the other end of the country when this particular letter was returned to sender. I have been threatened and had obscenities screamed at me now they know they can act with impunity and since my health has gone, I am crippled by arthritis and what with this Universal Credit business, I can't afford to move. The future does seem rather bleak and I am writing this in search of some suggestions.
clara - 21-Oct-18 @ 10:42 PM
we live in a rural area on a row of 5 terrace houses, at the front of the houses is road side parking every house has a spot and there is parking out the back. Every one gets along except our next door neighbours. A few years ago they took exception to us and decided not to talk to us again, we have always said hello and ignored what we could, but in the last year its escalated. My husband saw the deliberatly slam their car door into the back of our car, theyve poured chemicls over the garden fence and killed all my plants, They were even putting Vasalene over the fence a few weeks ago to stop our cats going into their garden ! But it was only on the fence that separates our gardens. They've made complaints to planning, Yarlington, Somerset Waste and various other council departments about us. Every time they have left with out complaint ( although Somerset waste havent got back to us yet). We are a normal working class family of 4. We arent noisy.... infact we arent really there during the week. We dont have parties or loud animals. This behaviour is really grinding us down now, the constant letters of complaint are awful, but how do we make it stop? I dont want to be driven away. Who can we go to ?
Claire - 24-Sep-18 @ 7:01 PM
we live in a rural area on a row of 5 terrace houses, at the front of the houses is road side parking every house has a spot and there is parking out the back. Every one gets along except our next door neighbours. A few years ago they took exception to us and decided not to talk to us again, we have always said hello and ignored what we could, but in the last year its escalated. My husband saw the deliberatly slam their car door into the back of our car, theyve poured chemicls over the garden fence and killed all my plants, They were even putting Vasalene over the fence a few weeks ago to stop our cats going into their garden ! But it was only on the fence that separates our gardens. They've made complaints to planning, Yarlington, Somerset Waste and various other council departments about us. Every time they have left with out complaint ( although Somerset waste havent got back to us yet). We are a normal working class family of 4. We arent noisy.... infact we arent really there during the week. We dont have parties or loud animals. This behaviour is really grinding us down now, the constant letters of complaint are awful, but how do we make it stop? I dont want to be driven away. Who can we go to ?
Claire - 21-Sep-18 @ 6:08 PM
I was good friends with my neighbours for 26 years, about two years ago I got 2 young female goats and they used to bring there grandchildren around to see them , unfortunately they started to get very unfriendly and together with a neighbour across the road , they started calling the Council and RSPCA in relation to animals I had in my yard. This occurred every Wednesday when I was out of town .I put a letter to the Editor in the local paper advising them to clean up there back yard before looking at mine. Every time the RSPCA received a call they would send a ranger from out of town to investigate , he would find nothing out of of order and ask me to contact him. they then ring the Council and the ranger ask me if I could take the goats out of town for a while as they were sick of the complaints. This has been going on fora fair while it has me mentally and physically upset as I love animals and take very good care of them . It appears that when you are the victim of this type of behaviour then you are guilty until proven innocent .They have also taken photo's within my property invading my privacy I feel as though I am a prisoner in my own back yard.
Speedy - 16-Sep-18 @ 4:28 AM
we live in a council semi decorated house the neighbour was ex council tenant then bought the house she is very noisy slams kitchen draws in sequence, she plays heavy metal rock music has soon has her husband goes to work its on, loud until he comes home then she turns it off before he gets in, we have tried to ask her but because i don't work due to disability she just called me a scrooger and said i hate people like you.and basically told me to get lost in so many words,
jdm70 - 4-Sep-18 @ 2:01 PM
My daughter and son in law their 2 kids 1 and 4 moved into a middle floor on new build the woman above keeps banging on the ceiling at 6pmreported daughter to council who came out and gave her a warning which upset her . This is first flat and my daughter is not noisy kids in bed by 8 at latest any suggestions she said she feels vunreble as hubby works lates
Mickey - 28-Jul-18 @ 7:46 PM
Hazeleyes - Your Question:
I live with my mother and sister in a large, old Victorian build. There's no double glazing and the landlady isn't prepared for us to install any, let alone pay. We've lived in the property for four years, three of which have been a living hell. We are no longer comfortable in a space that's supposed to be home. A young woman living next door with her boyfriend, literally complains about every single noise. She's contacted our landlady who lives in the same street, saying we speak too loud, laugh too loud and the TV etc.we have been model tenants. If we listen to music we always wear earphones. We don't bother anyone and we always have the volume on the TV at 13.our landlady messages us all the time to say she complained again, even though we go to bed by nine thirty (again afraid she will complain). She doesn't just make our lives hell, even though we live in a house, she lives in a bottom flat next to us. she texts the people living upstairs to her that they walk too loud, speak too loud etc. We contacted environmental health, citizens advice and they have said she can't do anything because we haven't done anything wrong and she's being overboard. However, it's reached breaking point now. My sister has finally conceived and expecting in November, but instead of being excited, she burst into tears as she knows that she'll be complaining about the noise of the baby. We've tried moving living rooms, we've gone to bed early and she causes so much arguments between us. My sister wants to move before the due date of the baby, but I feel that we've allowed this woman to take everything from us, soon a place we called home. The final straw was trying to find out information about her landlord in hope to explain everything. Turns out the landlord is the guy she's sleeping with and sharing a flat. And the landlady, well she's so keen in trying to keep her happy that it makes our lives a misery. The other neighbors like us. One spoke up for us and said they never hear us. What makes me angry though is that this woman dictates who is allowed to make noise, when a few times you can hear her cackle loudly, singing with her friends about quarter past eleven at night. It just doesn't seem fair that we are the ones who have to move when we don't bother anyone ??

Our Response:
We don't really have any suggestions here for you unfortunately. Obviously, this lady cannot really succeed in any formal complaint she makes against you but that doesn't help you in knowing that each day she will complain to you or about you again. You could maybe get a solicitor's letter asking that she stops making unreasonable complaints?
ProblemNeighbours - 22-Jun-18 @ 12:35 PM
I live with my mother and sister in a large, old Victorian build. There's no double glazing and the landlady isn't prepared for us to install any, let alone pay. We've lived in the property for four years, three of which have been a living hell. We are no longer comfortable in a space that's supposed to be home. A young woman living next door with her boyfriend, literally complains about every single noise. She's contacted our landlady who lives in the same street, saying we speak too loud, laugh too loud and the TV etc...we have been model tenants. If we listen to music we always wear earphones. We don't bother anyone and we always have the volume on the TV at 13...our landlady messages us all the time to say she complained again, even though we go to bed by nine thirty (again afraid she will complain). She doesn't just make our lives hell, even though we live in a house, she lives in a bottom flat next to us. she texts the people living upstairs to her that they walk too loud, speak too loud etc. We contacted environmental health, citizens advice and they have said she can't do anything because we haven't done anything wrong and she's being overboard. However, it's reached breaking point now. My sister has finally conceived and expecting in November, but instead of being excited, she burst into tears as she knows that she'll be complaining about the noise of the baby. We've tried moving living rooms, we've gone to bed early and she causes so much arguments between us. My sister wants to move before the due date of the baby, but I feel that we've allowed this woman to take everything from us, soon a place we called home. The final straw was trying to find out information about her landlord in hope to explain everything. Turns out the landlord is the guy she's sleeping with and sharing a flat. And the landlady, well she's so keen in trying to keep her happy that it makes our lives a misery. The other neighbors like us. One spoke up for us and said they never hear us. What makes me angry though is that this woman dictates who is allowed to make noise, when a few times you can hear her cackle loudly, singing with her friends about quarter past eleven at night. It just doesn't seem fair that we are the ones who have to move when we don't bother anyone ??
Hazeleyes - 21-Jun-18 @ 1:02 PM
I live in the middle flat of a very old building(private rented) and have a downstairs neighbour who makes my life hell .The walls are very thin and I hear all from upstairs including washing machine.toilet flushing amd footsteps ....I NEVER complain as I accept that in this building we have to accept what it is . My grandchildren visit occasionally and although we do tell them to be as quiet as they can ...she moans that they run riot!She complains that they are too noisy even on just walking aling my hall which constantly squeaks.Other neigbour to left of us complains my tv is loud and she hears it from my wall at 9pm when she goes to bed . Between them they have driven 2tenants from my flat and im getting really stressed to the pount im afraid of my grandchildren visiting me . The neigbour downstairs even posted notes through my door telling me to move my partners or my car off the drive (it would hold 4cars) They constantly call my landlady and although she knows their history she messages me to say they are moaning again. Im at my wits end
Lyndy loo - 9-May-18 @ 2:59 PM
Hi I have moved to cancil property from 2015 I always tried to be so nice to my neighbors and make sure I’m not making any inconvenience and be like friend to them .I am 24 years old ian full time studentmostly out of the house also because of my illness I’m on strong medication I can’t be wake till lateand even anytime I have my friends around I let my neighbors know in advance last weekend Friday at 10:30 my neighbor came and ask me to turn the music down and I did now I heard from other neighbors she try to get them to signacomplain letter against me I am so disappointed because I never make any noise and if I do I ask them in advance and make sure they are happy but my neighbor she never even asked or complain to meabout the noise now try to get the others to sign too asI amthe only foreigneraround I abit scared and don’t know how to prove she is lying would you please help me
Elii - 20-Apr-18 @ 6:59 PM
We (me,my husband, 22months toddler, now i have a new born 7weeks) moved in to 2nd floor apartment 3 months ago. My toddler isn't that noisy at night as he is off to bed between 7-8 and sleep through at night. New born cries sometimes but at night mostly sleeping ok. Recently on Easter holidays I invited a friend's kid for a play date. I was suffering from post natal depression so started to get a bit social. That night my neighbour said that kids were been loud and asked to keep it down. I apologised and said we are having a play date and few days after that few friends came with their kids and were playing. My toddler stomp but he has tiny puffy feet. Other kids weren't that noisy just being kids. Then the neighbour knocked after a bit and given me a letter. I've asked her to wait until I read but she didn't. The letter said that it was so noisy. According to the noise act 1996 she would complaint the council if this continues. I've only invited friends twice so far and will have to have play dates. But not every week. But I'm really stressed about the neighbour complaint. Should I reply and if I do what should I say. Thanks!
Priya - 4-Apr-18 @ 1:01 AM
Tyson - Your Question:
Me and my partner have very similar issues with our neighbours after 1 year of us living at our new property. OVER COMPLAINING, police, council, solicitors, dog warden, rspca, I could go on. We are renovating my grandads old house and since day one, these neighbours have harrassed us. These complaints are starting to affect our careers as they are a full time job to deal with, ontop of new parenting duties, building works, we own a lovely friendly family dog who I have recently had to pass on to my mum as they called the rspca faulsely accussing us as neglecting him. I am very close to going to the doctors to sign me off due to stress but this will affect both of our careers if we do this but what else can we do? These are very bad people we are dealing with and the police are no help.

Our Response:
If all else has failed, you could consider a private action in the civil courts for harassment (under the Protection from Harassment Act 1997). The court could order an injunction, preventing your neighbour from contacting you, or seek compensation for financial hardship or anxiety caused by the harassment. You may need the help of a legal professional if you decide on this course of action. Citizens' Advice will be able to help you find a solicitor.
ProblemNeighbours - 14-Mar-18 @ 11:04 AM
Me and my partner have very similar issues with our neighbours after 1 year of us living at our new property. OVER COMPLAINING, police,council, solicitors, dog warden, rspca, I could go on. We are renovating my grandads old house and since day one, these neighbours have harrassed us. These complaints are starting to affect our careers as they are a full time job to deal with, ontop of new parenting duties, building works, we own a lovely friendly family dog who I have recently had to pass on to my mum as they called the rspca faulsely accussing us as neglecting him. I am very close to going to the doctors to sign me off due to stress but this will affect both of our careers if we do this but what else can we do? These are very bad people we are dealing with and the police are no help.
Tyson - 13-Mar-18 @ 6:40 AM
b..... - Your Question:
Hey guys. I am a student living in my first apartment. I spend a lot of time studying (sometimes at odd hours.) I took a break Friday to talk to my gf for a few hours to the early morning. Then after hanging up with her, I start receiving loud knocks (banging) at my door. I never threw a party in my apartment ever. And usually hardly make any noise. I was excited after studying for a week to finally talk to my girlfriend. I was skeptial who could be banging on my door but I assumed it was my "downstairs" neighbor. I didn’t answer the door. Question, if there is a crazy neighbor that is banging on your door because talking to your girlfriend inside your apartment on the phone (with the windows shut) then comes to your door complaining should you just tell them what they are doing is harassment, and if they don’t go away you will call the police? Thank you.

Our Response:
If they do it on more than one occasion it's worth talking to them about this. As this was a one-off, it's probably better to ignore it.
ProblemNeighbours - 13-Feb-18 @ 2:28 PM
Hey guys. I am a student living in my first apartment. I spend a lot of time studying (sometimes at odd hours.) I took a break Friday to talk to my gf for a few hours to the early morning. Then after hanging up with her, I start receiving loud knocks (banging) at my door. I never threw a party in my apartment ever. And usually hardly make any noise. I was excited after studying for a week to finally talk to my girlfriend. I was skeptial who could be banging on my door but I assumed it was my "downstairs" neighbor. I didn’t answer the door. Question, if there is a crazy neighbor that is banging on your door because talking to your girlfriend inside your apartment on the phone (with the windows shut) then comes to your door complaining should you just tell them what they are doing is harassment, and if they don’t go away you will call the police? Thank you.
b..... - 10-Feb-18 @ 11:55 PM
Rys - Your Question:
Hi, any chance you can offer a bit of advice?My partner and I recently bought an upstairs flat in a 1920s conversion. As a result the walls and floors are very thin.Our neighbour is having issues with us being "noisy." I have read a lot of posts where downstairs neighbours feel like upstairs neighbours make unnecessary noise (suggesting that they stomp) and I can say in our case that this is not true. We don't wear shoes in the house and we are not excessive walkers, half the time we're glued to the sofa!!!Our neighbour (who we can also hear but accept that it's part of life living in an apartment) has recently started banging on the ceiling in the middle of the night (when we are asleep!!!) our room is over his. We believe this may have something to do with a slightly squeaky bed frame. This is causing us a lot of distress, he shouts and swears that we are constantly waking him up! This wakes us up and terrifies my dog, which then causes him to pace thus annoying the neighbour more. (The floor is so thin that we can have a conversation). Having sunk all of our money into the flat we are unable to purchase carpets, which we have explained to him. We are just trying to live and want to be amicable but after having been woken up with what I thought was someone breaking into my flat, I am at the end of my tether. Him suggesting that we don't go to the toilet past 10.00 pm is the final straw. Is there anything we can do to try and get him to stop? Diplomacy and chatting has not worked and the relationship is deteriorating rapidly.

Our Response:
It's a very difficult situation for you and for your neighbour. Unfortunately there isn't a great deal you can do. Can you perhaps consider laying some thick rugs while you save up for carpet? And of course the squeaky bed could be fixed? If the neighbour's banging becomes too intrusive, you could try environmental health, or as a last resort the police.
ProblemNeighbours - 11-Oct-17 @ 11:35 AM
Hi, any chance you can offer a bit of advice? My partner and I recently bought an upstairs flat in a 1920s conversion. As a result the walls and floors are very thin. Our neighbour is having issues with us being "noisy." I have read a lot of posts where downstairs neighbours feel like upstairs neighbours make unnecessary noise (suggesting that they stomp) and I can say in our case that this is not true. We don't wear shoes in the house and we are not excessive walkers, half the time we're glued to the sofa!!! Our neighbour (who we can also hear but accept that it's part of life living in an apartment) has recently started banging on the ceiling in the middle of the night (when we are asleep!!!) our room is over his. We believe this may have something to do with a slightly squeaky bed frame. This is causing us a lot of distress, he shouts and swears that we are constantly waking him up! This wakes us up and terrifies my dog, which then causes him to pace thus annoying the neighbour more. (The floor is so thin that we can have a conversation). Having sunk all of our money into the flat we are unable to purchase carpets, which we have explained to him. We are just trying to live and want to be amicable but after having been woken up with what I thought was someone breaking into my flat, I am at the end of my tether. Him suggesting that we don't go to the toilet past 10.00 pm is the final straw. Is there anything we can do to try and get him to stop? Diplomacy and chatting has not worked and the relationship is deteriorating rapidly.
Rys - 10-Oct-17 @ 6:59 AM
Concerned friend - Your Question:
Hi looking for some advice for a friend. She lives in a council property which she loves. But her neighbour is awful, from day one they haven't liked her. They complained to her about everything, but she tried to be polite and deal with some of them but it didn't matter. They would complain about something else silly like her child laughing to loud. They complain about other people on the street but mainly her. Now they have started complaining anonymously. She has people out every week, they complain out noise, her garden, smell every small thing. They also called the rspca and social services. Everything has been investigated and proved to be a false reports. But she can't do anything since it's anonymous. Obviously she is very stressed and feels like she is constantly being watched this has been getting worse over the years. Is there anything she can do.

Our Response:
If the complaints are anonymous and are discovered to be unfounded, the authorities will eventually get fed up of looking into it - in fact they often won't investigate an anonymous complaint anyway. Some authorities will also take steps to find out who has made the initial complaints and take action againts them if there is no basis for the complaint. If your friend knows it's a particular neighbour who's making the complaints she could try seeking legal advice and regarding harassment.
ProblemNeighbours - 8-Aug-17 @ 10:46 AM
Hi looking for some advice for a friend. She lives in a council property which she loves. But her neighbour is awful, from day one they haven't liked her. They complained to her about everything, but she tried to be polite and deal with some of them but it didn't matter. They would complain about something else silly like her child laughing to loud. They complain about other people on the street but mainly her. Now they have started complaining anonymously. She has people out every week, they complain out noise, her garden, smell every small thing. They also called the rspca and social services. Everything has been investigated and proved to be a false reports. But she can't do anything since it's anonymous. Obviously she is very stressed and feels like she is constantly being watched this has been getting worse over the years. Is there anything she can do.
Concerned friend - 5-Aug-17 @ 1:54 PM
Hi am just woundering if you can help? My neighbour keep complaining about unnessesary things to my landlord. She once txt him saying that we was having a fire in my back garden! I always burn stuff in my burn bin and it is the law now that you can burn at any time in a bin but I always waint untill it gets dark anyways so it gives people the chance to take they washing of line ect. She has also bombarded him with loads of texts while he was on holiday saying that we've always got people at our house and that there is always cars on her drive! The people that come to our house are family and friends, what's up ant I aloud visits and no cars are never in her drive at all.... I work 12 hour shifts and my partner works 10 hour shift so we are ardley in the house! We have only recently moved in the house so I dunno if it's jealousy or what but she needs to lay off! My landlords been down and been to other neighbours to see if they have a problem with us and they said no the never hear nothing from us! Iv been round to her house to try and sort it out to see what her problem but she waint answer the door or come out to talk! I am starting to feel a little depressed knowing that iv got to tip toe round in my own house and that isn't how you should be living! Can you advise me what I can do next? Thanks
Peblo - 28-Apr-17 @ 6:05 PM
Y.Foster - Your Question:
Hello, I’m wondering if anyone can help me.I’ve been living in a council owned first floor flat since I was a toddler and in the twenty years since I’ve been fortunate to have rather quiet neighbours and silence at night from the flat beneath me. However, coming close to a year ago, I got a new neighbour down below and since then have had problems with noise. I can hear conversations, music, the TV (and other more embarrassing things – I think people can guess what). I could also hear these things from the neighbours before, but the difference was the volume and the time, I was happy to tolerate a few hours of loud music during the day because I knew my previous neighbour went to sleep around the same time I did, and didn’t have loud music in the evenings. However, my new neighbour seems to have a nocturnal life and sometimes has music going from dusk till dawn. It's not really his fault, I have talked to him about it and he’s an alright guy, if just a little thoughtless (I'd tell him I'm being disturb by his music, but within a month it would gradually return to the problematic volume again). Neither of us should be having a negative impact on the other’s lives. The problem is with the building itself. From what I can tell my floors and walls are thin and hollow, with little (if any) sound insulation, and my bedroom sits right above his lounge, my bed is directly above his TV. I have been buying earplugs, taking sleeping aid products, but even then I am sometimes still woken in the early hours of the mourning. It’s beginning to stress me out to the point that I’m on edge almost constantly. Talking with another resident, he told me he heard that these flats (I think built in the 80s) were built as ‘temporary’ accommodation (which makes no sense – why build flats only to knock them down again?), which, if true, I feel was an excuse for the builders to build on the cheap.My question is: Can I get a soundproofing company to come in and install sound installation in my small bedroom, even though I’m renting? Preferably, I’d like both floor and walls done, at the very least the floor would help. I’m am willing to paying 100% towards the costs, making no demands on the council. Yet, despite this (that I’d pay and that it would be only for one small room), how likely would it be that if I ask permission from the council to do this would they reject it? If so, why would they and would I be able to challenge it? Surely this does no harm and will only benefit future tenants if I ever move out?

Our Response:
If this is likely to solve the problem, it will also benefit the property so we can't see a good reason why a landlord would turn this down. Why not just ask? If they refuse, make a complaint about the way noise travels to your environmental health officer and make sure they know that you have offered to have sound insulation improvements installed at your own expense.
ProblemNeighbours - 21-Mar-17 @ 2:04 PM
Hello, I’m wondering if anyone can help me. I’ve been living in a council owned first floor flat since I was a toddler and in the twenty years since I’ve been fortunate to have rather quiet neighbours and silence at night from the flat beneath me. However, coming close to a year ago, I got a new neighbour down below and since then have had problems with noise. I can hear conversations, music, the TV (and other more embarrassing things – I think people can guess what). I could also hear these things from the neighbours before, but the difference was the volume and the time, I was happy to tolerate a few hours of loud music during the day because I knew my previous neighbour went to sleep around the same time I did, and didn’t have loud music in the evenings. However, my new neighbour seems to have a nocturnal life and sometimes has music going from dusk till dawn. It's not really his fault, I have talked to him about it and he’s an alright guy, if just a little thoughtless (I'd tell him I'm being disturb by his music, but within a month it would gradually return to the problematic volume again). Neither of us should be having a negative impact on the other’s lives. The problem is with the building itself. From what I can tell my floors and walls are thin and hollow, with little (if any) sound insulation, and my bedroom sits right above his lounge, my bed is directly above his TV. I have been buying earplugs, taking sleeping aid products, but even then I am sometimes still woken in the early hours of the mourning. It’s beginning to stress me out to the point that I’m on edge almost constantly. Talking with another resident, he told me he heard that these flats (I think built in the 80s) were built as ‘temporary’ accommodation (which makes no sense – why build flats only to knock them down again?), which, if true, I feel was an excuse for the builders to build on the cheap. My question is: Can I get a soundproofing company to come in and install sound installation in my small bedroom, even though I’m renting? Preferably, I’d like both floor and walls done, at the very least the floor would help. I’m am willing to paying 100% towards the costs, making no demands on the council. Yet, despite this (that I’d pay and that it would be only for one small room), how likely would it be that if I ask permission from the council to do this would they reject it? If so, why would they and would I be able to challenge it? Surely this does no harm and will only benefit future tenants if I ever move out?
Y.Foster - 18-Mar-17 @ 7:47 PM
Hollymoo - Your Question:
Hi im holly my family are in a struggle the neighbours keep lying to the council saying they are making too much noise when they haven't they are well know to lie and they done this to the previous people that lived there its driving them to be ill my family are not far from losing tge house please give me some advice because the council want to throw my sister on the streets and her boyfriend paul and she could die as she has asthma and she has it badly anything can affect it please help me ??

Our Response:
The council need to have evidence of any noise before they can take any action to evict someone. You should ask the environmental health department about this. They will explain their procedure and tell you whether they have been monitoring the noise themselves.
ProblemNeighbours - 7-Feb-17 @ 2:19 PM
Hi im holly my family are in a struggle the neighbours keep lying to the council saying they are making too much noise when they haven't they are well know to lie and they done this to the previous people that lived there its driving them to be ill my family are not far from losing tge house please give me some advice because the council want to throw my sister on the streets and her boyfriend paul and she could die as she has asthma and she has it badly anything can affect it please help me ??
Hollymoo - 6-Feb-17 @ 5:35 PM
Hi. I hope somebody can give me some advice please. I live in a small row of terraced house with a garage and shops to the rear. Above all of the shops are occupied flats. To the rear of the houses/shops/flats is a large open area where the residents of the terraced houses have their garages/cars. This area is entered by one of two side drives both of which have been gated at great expense to the residents of the terraced houses (myself included). One of the residents of a flat has been leaving one of the side gates open and even though we go out and lock it (at night obviously) they come down and insist on unlocking it. Two nights ago my garage was broken into, tools were stolen, my neighbours security light was deliberately smashed and another neighbours garden fence was smashed (they had "garden-hopped"). The security gate had been left open allowing access to the burglars. My question is; can I sue this resident for negligence?
Mrs_Price - 21-Jan-17 @ 11:53 AM
I live in a town house and my neighbor bangs violently on the wall every time I walk down the stairs to loud or if my dog runs down the stairs. What should I do I don't think we are being overly load it's always before the noice restriction times
Seany12 - 21-Jan-17 @ 12:54 AM
My neighbour had complained few times to me that my son makes noisy at 4 am in the morning toll 6 playing with switches but my son hasa condition of being hyperactive medical isdues and he is only 3 years old. After few complaints I told him well he is a child but he argues I should supervise him better but he does not understand he has medical issues and he makes noise himself during summer times always buildung something lots of banging and noises during every year summer time day time.What should ai do ?
Sooneina - 24-Dec-16 @ 12:28 PM
I recently moved to an apartment with a flood dog I adopted from one of the flood disasters this year. He barks about 4 times SOME days when I live but I have video (which shows he isn't barking) and stayed outside my apartment several times for a hour or more to make sure he doesn't bark which he does not. My upstairs neighbor says he barks all day. She says she peeks through my window at him when I am not home. (which makes him bark because he sees her). Now when I take the dog out she automatically opens her patio door and watches us. I close our door so she can't hear when we go out but I feel like she is watching me or something because everytime now when I go to take him out, she is all the sudden on her patio. I feel like my privacy is being validated...what do I do?
AB - 20-Nov-16 @ 11:36 PM
We live in the third floor of a maisonettebuilding. I am a midwife and my partner is a nurse. I start work at 7pm and the hospital is in zone 6, therefore I need to wake up at 4.45 in order to be there on time. My partner also has some shifts when he starts working atpm and finishes at 2 am. Since we started living in this property nearly one year ago, the woman living under our flat has been complaining about noise since day 1 ( when we were in fact moving) sending us letters all the time regarding how noisy we are. We have not invited any of our friends due to this issue or hosted any house party. I am copying one of her last letters in here, where she threatens us saying she has spoken to our landlord ( we knew it was a lie as we have a landlady). Please read it and tell me if there is anything we can do as I think she is harassing us but I am not sure who shall I contact: "What time did your day begin? Mine began at 2:49, when you came home, (quoted my partners name), and proceeded to stomp around the flat (with your shoes on) for the next 30 minutes, then wake (quoted my name) up for a chat. I am really at my wits end guys. I feel as though every 6-7 weeks I need to remind you that there's someone that lives beneath your flat. I feel you are terribly inconsiderate neighbours and as such, I've now raised this issue to my landlord, your landlord and your property management company. Your landlord is less than pleased. He is friends with my landlord and understands the value of a tenant (like myself) who is quiet and respects others in the building. I 've been in the building nearly 8 years-so the value of my tenancy is important to him and he doesn't want me to go anywhere. Rest assured, if this middle-of-the-night noise continues your landlord will SERVE YOU NOTICE WITHOUT HESITATION. (Quotes my partner's name), please-for the thousandth time... when you come home in the middle of the night... PLEASE WILL YOU BE LIGHT ON YOUR FEET? Why is not possible for you to come in the door, brush your teeth & go to bed? I AM WITH YOU EVERY STEP OF THE WAY ONCE WOKEN UP... so until you go to bed (:30 minutes later)- we are both awake together. I am open to a discussion about this but really I've said all I need to. NORMAL PEOPLE WORK NORMAL HOURS AND REST BETWEEN THE HOURS OF 11PM AND 7AM. Clearly you do not work these hours so therefore you must (please) learn to think about people living around you and underneath you" This just one of her lovely letters.The previous one thanked us for going on holidays. Could this be considered harrasment?? Thanks for your help.
Nerea - 19-Oct-16 @ 2:24 PM
Hi, We live in a first floor maisonette. Since our daughter (16 months) began walking a few months ago our neighbours started complaining about how early they were being woken up on weekend mornings - we have a hard floor in the corridors and kitchen. At first they asked us politely and we agreed to try to reduce the noise but also explained that it was going to be limited as to what we could reasonably achieve. Since then, they have become increasingly impatient. Shouting at us and thumping on our front door - we didn't answer. We have since exchanged letters and we have encouraged them to speak to the council if they have any further problems but since then they have started thumping on the ceiling any time there is noise. We have asked them to be patient with us while we look into our options. Tonight they did it when we were playing a game with our daughter. We have been trying our hardest on weekend mornings, and have laid out rugs in the hallway to dampen the sound of footsteps. It seems that they are so frustrated now that they're intent on making us upset. We don't want to get the authorities involved but feel as though we need an independent mediator to try and resolve this. Do you have any advice? Thanks
Alex - 7-Jun-16 @ 8:03 PM
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