my struggle with apartment noise

kinishAugust 21, 2007

So as the title indicates, I'm having some problems with noise in my apartment, however contrary to the usual posts I have been labeled as the noise-maker.....

A bit of back story, I first moved out of my house when I was 19. By this time I had already been working full time for a year, saved enough to buy my own car, and enough to put a deposit down on a place to live. I moved into an apartment on the top floor of a three family house and proceeded to have all of my friends over constantly, throw large loud parties all the time, and play my guitars however loud i wanted whenever I wanted. But hey, I was 19 years old, first taste of freedom etc, and beyond that nobody ever seemed to care. In fact my downstairs neighbor (late 20's working professional) quite enjoyed the music and even came to some of the parties. Anyways, two years later that building was sold and all of the tenants moved out.

I moved into a new apartment (in a managed community) and have been there ever since, now going on my third year. I admit, when I first moved in I was still in that loud party mentality since it never failed me before and got off to a rather rocky start with my neighbor. I say neighbor instead of the plural because out of the 3 neighbors I have directly near me, only one has any problems with me. The other two are around my age and have never been bothered by any of my actions. Nor is the offended neighbor a family man or elderly, he is just a run of the mill single, middle aged man. Anyway, I quickly realized that the way I was living was not going to fly in this place and have since toned everything down. I no longer have parties, i don't invite people over anymore, i save the guitars for times when i know he isnt home or on weekend afternoons, and so on and so on. In fact in the past three years I have matured quite a bit and no longer have any desire for a loud environment, I truly just want to live in peace with this guy but it seems though that no matter WHAT i do, it's never enough and he just finds something new to complain about....

First it was I had too many people coming over which I stopped.

Then it was instruments/music which i solved by never turning on my amp.

then it was my acoustic guitar was too loud so i cut back to only a few hours on the weekend

then it was my computer games were too loud so i bought headphones

then it was my television is too loud (which i know for a fact it is not)

Meanwhile, he comes in quite late at night (midnight -1am) and usually proceeds to stamp around upstairs until at least 3am most nghts, sometimes to the point that it actually wakes me up. but when I mention this to the management they just think i'm upset and trying to get revenge and disregard me. Also, I think it's important to mention that not ONCE in three years has this neighbor come downstairs and mentioned any of this to me in person or asked me to turn something down. The only way I know about this is the angry calls i get from the management office every couple months with some new claim of disturbing the peace. But how can I know there's a problem when nobody tells me??? And if I truly am such a disturbance how come I live in a unit with 3 neighbors inside a building with over 20 apartments and only ONE person has a problem with me???

Now he's complained so many times that the management is thinking of evicting me!!! I feel like I'm at my wit's end, I understand people want a reasonable level of peace and quiet in their homes and I'm not some arrogant kid who just wants to party and not care about his neighbors. But this is starting to get insane, I mean why do i pay over a thousand dollars a month for the "privilege" of living somewhere that has the same noise expectations you might expect in a mausoleum??

I suppose what I'm trying to ask is

a) am i really being that unreasonable???

b) how on earth can I live with this guy and still have a pulse??

c) does anyone know of any places to live or resources specifically for younger people or just people who WANT a noise-tolerant place???

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I think it is great that you have realized that nobody can live with you the way you WERE living and I commend you for changing.

I think what has happened is that you probably annoyed this neighbor so bad with the thoughtless way you behaved previously that he is just now way past tolerating you at all and everything you do is magnified ten times over just because he doesn't like you anymore. It is so hard when you are a previous loud, noisy person who had no regard for others. I realize you have seen the error of your ways, but the fact is, it may be just to late for this guy to ever give you a chance.

Again, as a tenant in an all adult area.........thanks for realizing that your behavior was ruining the peace that everyone is entitled too and hopefully you could at least offer this guy an apology and tell him you realize you were wrong?

best wishes

    Bookmark   August 22, 2007 at 12:48AM
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As has been mentioned, have you actually talked to this man and apologised for your previous behaviour?

Although it's clear you are sorry (as you've changed) he might not know that, and might think you're just coming up with different ways to annoy him each time he complains about something else.

And; it's very difficult to ascertain how much of the noise we're making can be heard elsewhere. Perhaps your TV doesn't sound loud to you, but maybe it's next to a really thin wall and he can hear it really well.

Either way, talking to him and perhaps trying to build some sort of relationship (if you haven't tried already) definately sounds like the easiest solution.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2011 at 9:18AM
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I came to this site because I wanted to know how easy it was to hear neighbors in apartments, because I wanted to see if there are any no-noes of apartment living. Now I live in an apartment and things are quiet for the most part. I hear peoples dogs, and children playing, but it's normal and I actually enjoy the background noise.

Unfortunately I am seeing on forums a constant trend of people complaining about the noise their neighbors are making, and most of these complaints (such as the example from the author) are of noises so trivial. We all chose to live in an apartment building, we already knew we'd be living close to people. So did you all have a fantasy that you wouldn't ever be able to hear them? You blame your neighbors so quickly without relating to them on a human level, try to understand their life as well, and keep in mind that while your getting pissed off at their 'misbehavior' they don't even know that their bothering you in the first place! Your pissed at someone who doesn't realize that their normal lifestyle is keeping you up at night when really you should stop focusing on the little disturbances.

Relax a little, let the little noises go, the occasional door slam forgotten, and even for the neighbors who are INTENTLY and ignorantly being disruptive try to withhold from getting hateful and aggressive towards them and just contact your landlord or the police so they can do their job and help make a more positive change.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2011 at 9:01PM
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kinish, so sorry you have to go through this. I feel for you. I too currently live ABOVE neighbors who think my baby's bouncy seat and or my 3year old's daughter prancing around during the middle of the day is disruptive and actually bang on my floor enough to frighten my children. So first, I feel that some of the follow-up posts of some people just don't really make any sense. I'd like to tell those people and your non-peaceful neighbor that when you live with people above and below you, you will HEAR them living their lives doing whatever they so choose to do. THIS is given that you do the above mentioned activities in normal midday hours that would not disrupt someone's SLEEP at night. Why should you not be allowed to play your acoustic? and to ndrewoods above there, what are you talking about??? Personally Kinish, I would post your message on a different website forum where people will be more understanding of your lifestyle and concerns. As for possibly getting evicted, this is a very difficult situation. Personally and I know it would be difficult to do, but you would either need to wait out what just might happen and risk being evicted or move to another place. I would choose the latter. But just so you know I feel for you!

    Bookmark   August 24, 2011 at 10:10PM
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Where are your receipts for the head phones? Show them to the management, it's clear proof that you have been trying to decrease your noise. You might get a copy of landlord tenant rules and regulations for your state or county. get a microphone and recorder or use the computer, and record the complaining neighbor's noise when he comes in late at night. It sounds like he's as noisy as you, but may be breaking noise laws in your town. Look that up too. Back your self up with talks with your other neighbors, ask them to write out a statement of your noise they experience, take to management. Keep copies for your self. Good luck.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2011 at 5:53AM
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