There’s nothing more frustrating than having a noisy neighbor that regularly plays their music too loud or has the TV blaring out until the early hours of the morning.
The severity of a noisy neighbor problem is determined by how often the noise occurs and at what time of the day it’s at its worst.
While approaching your neighbor about the problem may feel like a bit of a daunting task, you have every right to intervene and bring up the issue, especially if the noise is having a detrimental effect on your life.
This guide will take an in-depth look at some of the most effective things you can do when dealing with a neighbor that often plays loud music. We’ll also look to answer some of the frequently asked questions related to the problem.
Talk Directly To Your Neighbors
There’s every chance that your neighbor isn’t aware how noisy they are. Therefore, it’s a good idea to approach them and discuss the problem, with one in three people saying that this approach has immediately solved the issue.
However, only do this if you feel comfortable and safe. Timing is also important as it may not be the best idea to approach them in the middle of a party when they’ve had a lot to drink.
Talking to them during the day over the garden fence or somewhere out in public are the preferred choices instead of simply knocking on the door.
In terms of how to approach the discussion, it’s beneficial to be calm and reasonable, as being confrontational may cause them to get defensive.
It’s also worth having a few specific examples in mind when their excessive noise has directly affected you. Finally, you should tell them how you’d like the problem to be rectified.
For example, you might ask them to not play their music past 10pm, or you could request them to give you a few days warning when next hosting a party so you can make other plans accordingly.
Involve The Council
If talking to your neighbor hasn’t had the desired effect, you can consider getting the local authority involved. Just be aware that involving the council will raise tensions.
Therefore, what seemed like a small problem may quickly become a serious dispute as your neighbor could end up in court.
What’s more, it’s important to keep in mind that any noisy neighbor complaints will officially go on record. So, if you’re looking to sell your house, this could pose a significant problem.
If the loud music continues to persist even after warning your neighbor, the council may suggest mediation. This is when an independent person tries to help both parties come to an agreement.
Some housing associations and councils offer free mediation services to their tenants. Mediation is a great option if you’ve fallen out with your neighbor. The process usually involves the following:
- A professional and fully qualified mediator will schedule a meeting with you and your neighbor
- This meeting will almost always be at a neutral location
- The aim of the meeting is to help your neighbor understand your point of view, and vice versa
- The mediator will listen to both sides and suggest specific ways to solve the problem
- Mediation is government funded, but doesn’t involve the law
- While it’s a successful process, mediation is voluntary, so your neighbor will have to want to attend
Sound Proof Your Home
Sound proofing your home is one way of reducing the amount of noise coming from outside. Effective sound proofing can be implemented in a number of different ways.
Fill holes and gaps – give your home a thorough check through to make sure that any gaps around window frames, electrical sockets, and so on, are all filled.
Check all doors – try and have doors that are solid rather than hollow as this will provide you with a much more efficient barrier to sound. It’s also a good idea to draught proof your doors to stop sound coming through.
Use fabric to dampen sounds – using fabric such as heavy curtains can make a significant difference to how much sound travels into your home, especially during the night.
Upgrade to double glazing – while this may be an expensive investment, updating your windows to double glazing can make a huge difference to the amount of external noise that enters your home.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can The Police Do Anything About Loud Music?
More often than not, the first thing people do when their neighbor is regularly playing music too loud (especially late at night) is to call the police.
This is because having an officer show up at the door for a noise complaint is enough for most people to turn the music down.
Most areas have noise ordinances. Therefore, multiple visits from the police could lead to fines, and even some misdemeanor charges.
Is It Illegal To Play Loud Music After 11pm?
Most local rules prohibit loud noises between 11pm and 7am on weekdays and then midnight until 8-10am on weekends or holidays.
Any excessive noise between these hours represents antisocial behavior and noise pollution which is seen as illegal.
In terms of the noise level, sounds above 50dB are not allowed during the designated “quiet” hours, while during the day, noise above 60dB should be avoided.
Does Insulating Your Walls Make A Difference To Noise?
Yes, insinuating the walls in your home can prevent noise travelling from your neighbor’s house. For example, sound proofing the wall that adjourns yours and your neighbors homes can significantly reduce the noise.