Bought A Rowhome and regret it!!!!!

angel_037May 10, 2006

I have never lived in a rowhome before and now wish I never did. My fiance and I moved in (bought) a home in March, 2006. Unfortunately, we could not afford a house elsewhere and have been in search of a house for while and had to move out of old apartment. So, not so easy to keep looking being we have been there and doing that for so long. Our neighbors right next to us are a horror. They blast there music for whole neighborhood to hear, they let there dog bark nonstop, there back yard looks like a junkyard and most of the time front too. We had to build a flower bed in front just to keep there garbage from entering under fence. I have asked them to lower it because we cannot hear our t.v. Would call police but then might start a war between us. They are disrespectful, rude and neglect there dog as well as there children. I need to vent out so sorry if this is long. We have put in complaints about everything from there yard to dog to kids. How would anyone handle this? Thanks.

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Angel, is there an association? Is a row house attached to the other homes? If that's the case, then I'd assume there's some sort of association like there would be with condominiums. How often do they meet, and can you bring your complaints up at the meeting? Could you complaint to the police about the noise anonomously? Are there other neighbors who are willing to complain and share your frustration? Can you fix your house up real cute and sell it? If you put it on the market, maybe the realtor could knock on their door and plead the case that the home won't sell for the going rate if they don't clean up their act. Also the value of their own home would increase significantly if they cleaned it up. Do your neighbors own the property or is it a rental property? You could call the board of health if there's trash strewn about and it's comin ginto your yard. Can you put extra insulation in your walls to muffle the sound? Can you plant a tall hedge or get a variance for a tall fence? I feel for you - we've been going through a similar problem and no help from the town (except the town DID tell him I was the one complaining - sheesh!). I am assuming you are still young and no children yet. I would get out before I had children in the school system and felt you had to stay. Can you rent it out and buy something else? I wish you luck. It's not easy.

    Bookmark   May 11, 2006 at 1:38PM
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Hi sameboat. Yes, our home is attached to there home. We have cement walls as it is but still hear them. I mean, I know we are going to hear noises and tv's and music but they blast theres where the whole neighborhood hears it. We have complained about the garbage and they have been warned and also fined 2 other times at 200.00 each time. We just bought the home and no other home that we ca afford is out there in our town. We are putting up a privacy fence in backyard soon though. Just hoping they will grow up and learn they have children that dont need the loud blaring music in there ears. Neighbors rent there home. I am on my late 30's and fiance same as well and no children here at home But we both have kids. Anyways ty for responding and good luck with your situation.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2006 at 2:27PM
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If your neighbors are renters, you may be able to find out who owns the house via the county offices. The name and mailing address of the owner should be available in tax records. You could then send the owner a letter (anonymously if you like -- sounds like that's how you'd prefer it) describing the condition of the property. Who knows if they'd do anything but perhaps it's worth a try.

In the meantime continue complaining re. the noise and the garbage, perhaps getting a bit more strenuous -- i.e. "The trash buildup is a public health issue" etc. Also, document your communications to the city and check with other neighbors who may be doing the same.

What an annoying situation to be in... I can relate. We had very similar issues going on with neighbors in our old house. Eventually property values rose so much that the absentee owner decided to sell, and the tenants finally got kicked out. But that's just a waiting game...

    Bookmark   May 12, 2006 at 6:35PM
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My first house was like yours. The entire development we lived in was all attached homes. Mostly people got along, it was much easier if you did. There were a few that did not.

If you can work out something with this person yourselves that is best. Are they renting or owners?

Is there a written agreement that you signed when you bought the place spelling out what each side can and can not do?

If you can not work out things between you you should go talk with an atty. We had two people that could not work out an agreement, one hired an atty, and they wound up in court. The judge laid down rules and the one who got sued ended up selling her place. She did not like the settlement the judge made.

The legal route was not very expensive, a couple grand or so.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2006 at 6:49PM
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We already have the renters information on there landlord and we plan on writing a letter to him. I do not know how good it will do being there friends with there landlord but worth a shot. I have asked her to please lower music because we have to make our t.v loud when they do and we do not want to disturb other neighbors on our other side. We have n problem with them. Just the one side. Like right now, it is 1238 a.m and there blaring there music. Very disrespectful and i have to be up in a few hours. I cant even go to sleep with it going. But giving them up until I get done here to lower it and will go out to ask if they would. Anyways, ty for responding. Have good weekend. Kim

    Bookmark   May 13, 2006 at 12:40AM
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Try some of the above suggestions. What about the neighbours on the other side of their unit? Could you both try making life difficult for them and their landlord? If you cooperate with each other, you may get some action.

But in the meantime, get a good set of earplugs, custom fitted if necessary, or a "white noise" generator for the bedroom to help you sleep.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2006 at 7:14AM
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Keep hitting them in their pockets if you must. Sooner or later, you may get dirty looks or comments under the breath but, you'll be able to live there in peace. These type situations cause a lot of anxiety and can be quite emotionaly draining. Rational and considerate people such as yourself cannot phathom total rudeness and disrespect for others. You'll have to tackle each situation individually...i.e the trash, the noise, etc.
The next time you have to ask them to turn down the music (especially after midnight), do it politely, apologize that you'll have to involve the authorities but it is imparing your ability to perform your day to day functions. Don't just threaten, if they don't comply, then call the authorities. Also, invites friends and family over so they may witness the situation. You'll then have a recording of the incidents and witnesses you can use to prove they have a tendency to do these things. This type of encroachment is considered trespassing and you do have legal recourse which will also afford you monetary compensation. Trespassing includes any acts which prevent you from having full use of your property. If this trespass causes you to lose a promotion or adversly impacts your ability to do your job, cause you to have an accident due to not being able to sleep or concentrate, they are legaly liable. The Landlord, once made aware of the circumstance also becomes a responsible party.

The next move is at tax reassessment time. Rebut you tax assessment and give the reasons why. If the authorities up until this time have been unable to stop the obnoxious activities, state that also. You have a case for getting your taxes lowered or at least minimize any increase.

If these folks are bothering you, they are bothering others in the area. Consult with other neighbors. Ask them..."Am I being too picky or is the noise and trash really disturbing". Get a feel for what they think. You may find you have allies. Contact your home owners insurance agent and explain to them what is happening. Let them know you are planning to take legal action and you are concerned why an insurance company would insure people such as this. Tell them this action is causing you damage and losses. They may offer you suggestions or even take action, if they happen to be the same insurer for both of you.

Renters in areas such as you mention have no "skin in the game" since they can just move on. They may even be subsidized as a result of low income or welfare reasons and could care less. We all also know people who will turn the music up and make more trash just because they know it bothers you. To sit and do nothing WILL NOT resolve the problem and will only serve to make you more miserable.
Please excuse any misspellings...train of thought typing..

    Bookmark   May 14, 2006 at 10:53PM
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One way to hit them in the pocket book it to capitalize on their disregard for your city's noise ordinence. Your city or county will have a specific noise levels acceptable for nighttime hours within residential areas (ask the city for a copy of the ordinence...if they dont have one, then the city/county has adopted your state's ordinence). You can buy a simple noise meter from Radio Shack and monitor the decible levels recieved within the areas of "outdoor frequent human use"....that means your backyard, your front porch, ect. With this information, the local police cannot simply ask the neighbors to "keep it down", you actually have legal authority to make it a bigger issue...usually starting with heafty fines.

....good luck.. Shannon (noise abatement specialist)

    Bookmark   May 22, 2006 at 1:40AM
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Hi dancing pony, There is no time ordinance for noise. It is at any time someone is disturbing the peace meaning that if there blaring music at 1 p.m, the police can tell them to lower it. It dont matter what time it is. We are tolerating it so far and lately they have been good with no loud music. It is there yard that needs more attention then noise. Now, as for hitting them in the pocket, thats where there getting hit. They have been fined before and they will keep getting fined until they clean there yard up. it looks like a junk yard and woods. I would be embarrased if it were my place. But anyways, I believe they are looking into moving to PA sometime, hopefully soon, so beware PA residents. Your in for a rude awakening if you get them for your neighbors. Kim Ty for replys.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2006 at 12:26AM
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