Help with a loud neighbor

RyanSmyanFebruary 8, 2012

Hello! I have a concern I was wondering if any of you could help me. My wife and I recently moved into a duplex. When we moved in the other half was vacant. We lived there for two weeks and our new neighbors moved in. They were loud during the move, which we didn't mind because they were just getting settled in and moving is hard enough as it is without getting noise complaints from neighbors. So we figured we would give it about a week for them to get everything settled. It has been two weeks since they have moved in and nothing has changed. The woman who moved in, let's call her April, doesn't have a job so she is home all day long and screams at people on the telephone. My wife is a student and works from home, so it is really difficult for her to concentrate on her work because she can her EVERYTHING April says because she talks SO LOUD. April also has a daily fight with her husband/boyfriend that shakes the drywall. April constantly screams at her toddler and baby for things they do that annoy her, and she plays blasting rap music that causes the floor to vibrate. And at night, April and her previously mention husband/boyfriend have the loudest "relations" I have ever heard.

Normally, I would have already brought all of this to her attention and asked that she try to keep it down. However, there are extenuating circumstances. Now, I want to preface this by saying that in no way, shape, or form am I racist toward ANY person. I pride myself in being open-minded and tolerant. My wife and I are white and April and her family are black. This still would not be an issue if my wife and I had not heard the following telephone conversation April had with one of her friends, "Yeah, we moved next to whitey! They are the whitest crackers I have ever seen." Now, as you can imagine, this made us a little angry, and could potentially complicate our predicament. I say this because April is OBVIOUSLY racist again us. How are we supposed to have a civil conversation about keeping down her noise levels when she feels that way about us without so much as having been introduced? What do you think I should do?

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I think you should move. Honestly, from what you have written, I don't believe you can resolve this by talking with the neighbors or complaining to the police or landlord. It would require too many changes on the part of your neighbors, people who probably would be unwilling to change anyhow. Tolerate it to the end of your lease and move on.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2012 at 9:42AM
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I would agree with Graywings, you're unlikely to change their behavior and certainly not their prejudices. The next step is to develop an exit strategy. Review your lease and whatever laws govern landlord/tenant relations in your state.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2012 at 8:27AM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

While you're stuck there, there's always the "nice her to death" plan. Make some cookies & take them over (with your spouse) & tell her now that she's settled in you wanted to welcome her to the neighborhood. Be extremely nice but start babbling about her private life, like giving advice on stuff you've heard going on, anything you can think of. Like, "Don't worry, honey, we heard the whole thing, we were talking about it for hours and we think... I hope you and (insert name) have worked out that (???) issue... Did I tell you we ordered a complete set of Wayne Newton CD's? I can't wait till they get here so we can crank it up. I know how you like music!..." all the while complimenting anything you can find to say something nice about, cute kids, pretty vase, whatever. You get the idea.

Only the most dense and/or truly inconsiderate person wouldn't get the hint and she still might not like you but can't say anything except how nice you are. Worst case scenario, she just continues to be obnoxious, but you've not risked seeming confrontational and haven't complained to her. All you've said are supportive, positive (yet hopefully uncomfortably nosy) things. At least you can show her not all white people are racist.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2012 at 4:18PM
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You might be able to get out of your lease earlier if you were to tape record the racist conversations and give a copy to the landlord/housing authority/etc.

However it sounds like a real headache and I would probably do what graywings and purpleinopp suggested:

Play nice and try to get by until its time to renew the lease.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2012 at 3:28PM
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I like purpleinopp's idea -- you could also have a loud conversation about her private life next to a shared wall in your duplex. That way you don't risk her yelling at you about "eavesdropping".

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 3:17PM
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