I live in a rented apartment and suffer from the footfall noise from upstairs. SInce this is a rented apartment I cannot make any major structural changes. Any suggestions?
The first and most ideal thing would be to ask your upstairs neighbor to get rugs with thick foam padding. Is there a rule in your complex or apt building that talks about people having to put down rugs for this purpose?
And also ask your neighbors not to wear shoes indoors.
If it's noise that's keeping you up at night, I suggest Mack's earplugs - they're great and if I didn't wear them I would be woken by footfall noise.
There is a website I have looked at that has a forum on it that specifically addresses soundproofing in rental situations. It is at supersoundproofing dot com. I have no idea if it is helpful for you or not but I wanted to make you aware of its existence. (this is not a plug for the company, just for the discussions on their forums)
I would speak to the landlord. And don't take the crap about normal living noises. A normal living noise is not constant stomping above someone's head.
And get a top floor next time. When I moved after sixteen years in a place I owned, I got a top floor apartment with no walls that adjoin another apartment. Plus, because there are only four units in the building, the landlord was picky about whom he rented to (one should discriminate by asking questions about behavior, and asking references about behavior), especially after the frat boys he rented to earlier trashed the place and made so much noise the police were called constantly.