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Feeling Harassed by Downstairs Neighbors

Posted by storybrook (My Page) on
Mon, Oct 1, 12 at 0:26

My boyfriend and I moved into an older apartment complex 4 months ago. The downstairs neighbors moved in about a month ago. Within the first week our new neighbor knocked on our door and complained that she could here us having sex late at night, that it was extremely loud and that we were rude to do that. I apologized and told her it would not happen again. We were both embarrassed and felt really bad about it. The next time we had sex that week we shut the windows and it was at an earlier hour, around 8 pm. The next day we get an email from the landlord saying that there was a complaint of "loud screaming and mattress noises" and that we needed to fix the problem and to keep quiet after 10 pm. We were a little confused because we made sure that we were quiet and that we wouldn't disturb our neighbor at a late hour. About 3 days later we had sex, windows closed, made sure to keep absolutely silent, and this time around 9 pm. Two days late we get a letter saying that there have be 3 separate days that our neighbor has complained about screaming and mattress noises and that we signed a lease agreeing to not disturb our neighbors peace. I was so frustrated.
The apartment complex is the cheapest in town. We knew that it wasn't going to be sound proofed or anything of the sort. We hear our neighbors talking, moving around and so forth but thats what you get when you live in a rickety apartment.
We don't have people over, we don't play loud music. We are a quiet couple. We are not having loud crazy sex. They knock on the ceiling if they hear our mattress moving while we are together. We have made many adjustments to try and fix this but we can't afford a new mattress.
I feel like we are being harassed by these people and that our peace is being disturbed. They are lying to the landlord about us and making me uncomfortable in my own apartment.
Is it unreasonable for us to have sex early in the evening? Is it unreasonable for us to be intimate at all? I don't want to be the noisy neighbor!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Feeling Harassed by Downstairs Neighbors

It's possible that the neighbors aren't hearing you, but that they are hearing someone else in the complex--sound travels in mysterious ways in large buildings. They could be hearing someone on either side, or on one side of you. The noise could travel through vents or pipes.

You need to be a bit more proactive with the management, otherwise they are going to see you as bad tenants.

Take all the letters you have received and go to the office. Point out that you do not "scream" during sex, so whoever they heard, it wasn't you. Ask for specifics--exactly what time did they hear the noise? Then you can either accept that they heard you, or tell management that it wasn't you because you were sleeping/eating/out of the apartment at that time.

Also point out to management that your neighbors bang on the ceiling if you roll over in bed at night--they appear to be very sensitive to sound. Did you have downstairs neighbors the first few months you lived there? Did they complain about noise? If not, then that's another sign that these new neighbors may be super-sensitive to sound.

Then ask the management what you can do to minimize sounds transferring from your apartment to theirs. Follow their advice, if they have any.

Then check your bed. Is it the mattress itself that is making noise, or the bed frame? Mattresses usually don't make a lot of noise, so I'm wondering if the bedframe squeaks or something. You can usually find plain metal bedframes for about $50. It might be worth getting a new one, if only to prove to management that you are trying as hard as you can to be good neighbors.

Also consider adding an area rug to the bedroom, even if you already have carpet. The more cushioning between you and the neighbors, the better. Same for curtains. If you don't have them, add them. And close them at night.

So, first try to determine if it is really you the neighbors are complaining about. Second, show management that you are willing to work with them to solve the problem. Third, do what you can to keep sounds from traveling out of your apartment.


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RE: Feeling Harassed by Downstairs Neighbors

Get rid of the bedframe and place the mattress and box springs on the floor.


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RE: Feeling Harassed by Downstairs Neighbors

If your neighbor is lying then you have nothing to worry about. It's her word against yours. You must deny any wrong doing to your landlord in writing. It's your right to have sex any time you want.


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