/ Home & Energy

Are you fed up with nuisance neighbours?

Noisy neighbours

Loud arguing, doors slamming, TV blaring or heavy stomping? Or how about dumped rubbish, overflowing bins, untidy gardens or anti-social behaviour? Have you suffered from a nuisance neighbour?

According to our latest survey, 27% of Brits have had a problem with nuisance neighbours in the last year. Loud voices, arguing and loud music top the list of annoyances in our survey. But incidents involving drug use and police being called to properties were also cited.

The effect this can have on people is no laughing matter – 53% were left feeling angry, 42% said they felt stressed and 11% admitted to feeling afraid.

We also found that 10% resorted to getting their own back by creating annoyances for their neighbour, and 8% argued with their partner about it.

Repeat offending, the time of day and a lack of apology are factors that compound the frustrations felt by people when dealing with problematic neighbours.

Young people don’t know where to turn

Our survey also found that young people were more likely to suffer from a nuisance neighbour, with 33% of 18-24 year olds experiencing a problem in the last year, compared to just 17% for those aged 65+.

However, 86% of people aged 18-24 who experienced a problem told us they didn’t know where to go to get advice or help, compared to 44% of those aged 65+.

How to resolve neighbour disputes

When it comes to dealing with disputes, 32% of people calmly spoke to their neighbours to try and resolve the issue and 23% said they kept a record of what occurred and when. But only 22% contacted their local authority or environmental health department.

I was pretty shocked at this. Regardless of whether you rent or own your property, local authorities have a duty to investigate excessive noise, anti-social behaviour and rubbish dumping that affects local communities. They have powers to take action against people whose behaviour is unacceptable, so you need to make sure you get in touch with them. Don’t suffer in silence.

Have you had a nuisance neighbour? Was it easy to resolve the problem? Did your local authority help?

Comments
Profile photo of william
Member

I’ve been lucky, I’ve only really had a nuisance neighbour once. Not sure what happened to sore the “relationship” but he ended up emptying the fag ends from his car onto my doorstep he even put broken matches in the front door key hole. After several months and even catching him once which he denied which was odd as he was the only person there that could have thrown a fag end at my door. I put up a CCTV camera, and oddly enough he stopped instantly. A few years later he moved to Spain, peace at last 🙂

Profile photo of Patrick Taylor
Member

I cannot see any link to the on-line survey carried out for Which?. Is it possible to have sight of the questions asked /raw data.?

The article does not give me sufficient information as to how the 2000 odd respondents were selected by Populus as I think the figure is unlikely high . I answer a heap load of Which? surveys and sometimes the questions are very ambiguous or seem to be not looking at the whole picture and therefore I treat survey results with caution.

Checking the Populus site I see Populus pays and Which? does not – perhaps I ought to change : )

Profile photo of Patrick Steen
Member

Hi Diesel, here’s the info for you: Populus surveyed a representative sample of 2,062 UK adults online between 20-22 June 2014. Data were weighted to be demographically representative of all UK adults. Populus is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules. 548 people have had a problem with a noisy neighbour in the last 12 months.

Member
Chris of Streets Alive says:
16 September 2014

Interesting though probably not preresentative survey of neighbours relations in the country as it was online which is likely to attract answers and participants who have had a problem. Could the CA please take a more positive approach to promoting neighbourliness?

Profile photo of wavechange
Member

I am not convinced that a survey of 2000 adults would be enough to give useful information for a county never mind the whole of the UK. It shows there is a problem but I think most of us knew about that.

Profile photo of Patrick Taylor
Member

Thanks Patrick for the swift response.

It was rather the questions, and how “nuisance” and “problem” are defined that are of interest. One mans nuisance ……

It is interestig that older people to suffer less, it may be a social effect and seniors are more understanding , or possible those that respond live in seaate areas. Surveys can be very interesting in construction. Look at:

” Among 18 to 24-year-olds, 33% had encountered a problem in the past year, with the figure being 17% for those aged 65 and over. ”

It says “A” problem,. So are we counting a single incident to lead to a paragraph :
” Loud arguing, doors slamming, TV blaring or heavy stomping? Or how about dumped rubbish, overflowing bins, untidy gardens or anti-social behaviour? Have you suffered from a nuisance neighbour?”

To quote a Which? Connect example the question was something like what type of road is most of you driving on? The possible andswers being Motorway, Trunk, Urban and rural I think it was.

Now the instant one sees it you think do you mean by time or by distance travelled. There was no guide as to what was meant.

Another question was as always ” Do YOU [ you as household or person not defined] buy bedding plants/seeds? ” I never buy them my wife does. Therefore the results could correctly record I do not but that incorrectly my garden never has bedding plants/ seeds bought for it.

So yes surveys are a minefield and seing the original questions and guidance to respondents makes a lot of difference to how much you believe them.

Profile photo of Caroline Fletcher
Member

Hi all,

Thanks for your comments. It’s really important for us at Which? that our data is robust and reliable. Here’s a bit of info on our approach:

For UK wide polls, we usually survey 2000 people as this is the gold standard for public opinion polling. Statistically, we can be confident of the results of the survey to within 2% (that is the maximum margin of error at a 95% confidence interval – if you’re interested in the stats).

We also ensure that our sample is representative of all people (18+) across the UK. This means that in each geographical region we set quotas to ensure we get the right number of men, women, different age groups and socio-economic groups. After setting quotas the data is also weighted to ensure it is exactly representative of the population.

By setting quotas it ensures we do not just get people who may be likely to answer online surveys, but, in addition to this, Populus use various sampling and quality measures to ensure they survey people who don’t usually do online surveys. This means that we get all different types of people – not just people on a survey panel.

Finally, people do not know the subject of the survey before they take part and so we do not attract participants, for example, who have experienced a problem. In fact, often in the surveys, different topics are covered throughout one survey.

In terms of the questions, this survey was predominantly multiple choice questions. The two main ones were firstly a question asking people if they are now, or have in the last three years, been annoyed by their neighbours behaviour (with choices ranging from now, to in the last 12 months, to never). The second question asked what their neighbours had done in the last 12 months to annoy them (with lots of options and an open ended option available).

Our data suggests that many people have experienced problems and we want to ensure (where that is the case) that we can offer people advice about how to deal with it. Many people in our survey told us their first step was talking calmly to their neighbours to try to resolve it.

I hope that helps.

Member
Chris of Streets Alive says:
16 September 2014

Hi that is helpful, but the questions assume that the problems which occur, as they do in all life, are not balanced by any good things happening between neighbours; the day to day helping, taking in parcels, bit of chat, looking after pets when away etc. It is only half of the story. See our http://www.agefriendlystreets.org campaign for inspiration.

Profile photo of Patrick Taylor
Member

Thank you Caroline for your response.

Having established the make-up the next area of interest would be the questions. Why are not all surveys available for examination after the event? As I have noted ambiguous questions can exist or a series of leading questions can elicit a response to something actually quite minor.

It seems to me rather like the ALLtrials data that unless all surveys are held for examination then dodgy ones can be choosen to back some opinions in a red-top that appeal to their readership demographic.

I am indebted to the BBC Radio Four programme “More or Less” Fridays for alerting me to general statistical dodginess that goes on. Would Which? like to support a law change were dodgy statistics end up with fines being levied. I am sure 5.1 people out of 5 would support it. : )

Actually on the same front Facebook manipulating news feeds to readers seems totally out of order so did Which? make representations?

Member
John Ross says:
16 September 2014

There does seem to be a reluctance by owners ,leaders ,police or council to take any responsibility .If you play the non confrontational method all you get is more bully boy tactics to intimidate you and your family on an ongoing basis,but no resolution.If you go Health and safety your issues fall on deaf ears.of course the the race card will be played and everybody runs away and leaves you suffering daily with no recourse,due to a lack of willingness to get to the real causes and problems. people need to be able to live in peace and quite but no laws have made an iota of difference to the suffering of people at the hands of selfish,uncivilised people who have no regard for anybody but themselves .

Profile photo of wavechange
Member

Years ago, I lived in a flat, above a chap who used to play loud music late on Saturday evening. When I mentioned the problem he became much more considerate. It must be hell to have to put up with noise every day.

The only problem I have had in over 30 years in my present home has been a neighbour playing loud music on his car stereo when washing and polishing the car, sometimes twice a week in the summer months. Thankfully he has found the car wash.

I have always tried to be considerate of other people. My petrol lawnmower is noisy but I avoid using it after 7pm.

Profile photo of John Ward
Member

The British are a docile lot. I’ve played classical music at max volume, used power saws, drills and planes on Sunday mornings, had smelly smoky bonfires, arguments on the phone in the garden, and noisy parties. But did anyone complain? They won’t stir themselves to even have a word about their husband being ‘on nights’ or their childreen doing their homework, so what chance is there that any meaningful action will be taken by the authorities [who probably really do have far worse things to deal with]?

I am surprised nobdy has mentioned the annoyance of kids kicking a ball up against the side of the house, people who park their car outside somebody else’s house and then do a bit of therapeutic panel-beating, and those who let fireworks off on any pretext without advance warning.

With so many people living in flats, particularly converted houses, these days, troublesome neighbours are a growing problem. I believe there is a common law right to be able to have “peacable enjoyment” of one’s own home, and this is usually enshrined in lease conditions and tenancy agreements where applicable. The legal remedy for persistent violation is to obtain an injunction from the Court but that is both expensive and unpredictable. The local authority route is preferable, but as previous correspondents have said, if they take any action at all getting a satisfactory outcome is rare outside of extreme cases. Most residents stay below the parapet for fear of retribution.

Friends of ours who live in a penthouse on top of an upmarket apartment block had a problem with the rather juvenile owner of the adjacent penthouse who was decidedly anti-social in various unpleasant ways. Eventually, after involving the police and the city council, keeping copious records of incidents, giving witness statements, going through a lot of stress, and waiting a very long time, some sort of restraint was placed on the individual but it fell short of an ASBO and subsequently minor irritations and disagreeable behaviours have been the order of the day. The objectionable resident put his flat on the market but it didn’t sell, possibly because he had made it so unappealing with various hideous internal alterations and the installation of a hot-tub on the balcony.

I admit to getting particularly annoyed over unkempt front gardens even though we don’t have any near us. It seems that tenanted properties are more prone to this since absentee landlords and managing agents rarely take any action to enforce the terms and conditions that require tenants to keep the gardens tidy. Landlords also have a tendency to allow void properties to get into bad condition and many owner-occupiers are also negligent.Civic values don’t count for much these days and people who raise these issues are regarded as pompous old fools who should get a life, so we all keep stum and hope the problem goes away.

Profile photo of wavechange
Member

I think it is often better to be docile rather than risk an argument that could escalate. I live in a quiet cup-de-sac with few cars on the road but someone decided to park opposite my drive when going to collect her child from the local primary school, making it difficult to get my car out. I very politely asked if she could park somewhere else such as alongside my house – where there is always space – and just got abuse. If she carries on doing this after the school holidays I will have to move the car out of the drive if I know I’m going to be using it.

Profile photo of william
Member

I’ve known people ( not me ) who would simply let the tyres down of he offending car.

Which reminds me one day at work a colleague got a phone call from his wife saying someone had parked on their drive, and it wasn’t a neighbour. When he got home he parked across his own drive blocking in the other car, a few hours later there was a knock on the door, excuse me is that your car across this drive I need to get my car out, to which my friend simply said, sorry no idea who’s it is and shut the door. Waited for the guy to work off, then dove his car off after letting the others guys cars down.

Member

Yes because they don’t wish to be stabbed or called on as racist/whatever/insert here or face double trouble after asking very nicely. People don’t want to be killjoys nor do they really want to get into a difficult conversation in case it ruins the say hello/goodbye keep mostly to yourself routine.
Those of us that share communal areas also do not wish to bump into people we have had words with. Fake smiles and false niceties until they get inside.

I have noticed with various neighbours many have previously lived in massive concrete blocks in certain parts of the world are very used to certain ways. They don’t realise plasterboard converted flats don’t contain their normal behaviour. It’s not always their fault.

Also, for some people, you can be as nice as pie and ask continuously, but the behaviour carries on until you either up the ante, yell your head off at them or just plain give up.

Most people have so much going on their own lives they just don’t have the energy for anything else.

I can tell you at 32 I am exhausted dealing with other people’s behaviour. I’m not perfect and in fact constantly worry we are being too loud but at the end of the day there will always be someone who really doesn’t give two hoots how they behave. I have seen it and frankly no, I cannot be bothered to complain anymore. We moved house this year and although things have vastly improved, most people here are decent, the louts opposite give some trouble at least twice a month.
I gave them an excuse that it was because the world cup was on, but no, they are just vile nosey people and no, I’m not getting involved for fear of causing more problems as I have seen happen before.

Profile photo of Patrick Taylor
Member

The age range 18-24 is an interesting one as we assume that at eighteen people are adults. However it is past 20 that the adult brain becomes apparent. Within that age range then we are perhaps seeing that childish thoughtless behaviour is happening and that it is noticed by the peer group aswell as older folk..

” Areas involved in more basic functions mature first: those involved, for example, in the processing of information from the senses, and in controlling movement. The parts of the brain responsible for more “top-down” control, controlling impulses, and planning ahead—the hallmarks of adult behavior—are among the last to mature.”

” In terms of the volume of gray matter seen in brain images, the brain does not begin to resemble that of an adult until the early 20s.”

http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/the-teen-brain-still-under-construction/index.shtml

Hopefully the survey might have asked the age ranges how old were the people who were creating the stressful incident[s] that affected them.

Nuisance neighbours can be a serious problem and should not be treated lightly. However the scale of the problem from the survey results as seen are difficult to judge.

The advent of the boom box and the ramping up of TV sound systems to give cinematic effects must create considerable annoyance where people live close together. A change in society to 24 hour working and living no doubt also aggravates the effects.

This article is regarding Germay and the laws they have to regulate aspects of society:
http://www.toytowngermany.com/lofi/index.php/t130567.html

Member

I call BS on that. At 16 I was working and knew not to have loud music on at 2am on a weekday for example. Everyone else I knew at that age and since also know how to behave. In fact it has often been older people giving the trouble. I remember at 19 needing to be up at 5.30am for work the next day and some hipster guffawing in the garden at 1am on a week night.
My sister was and is the same. She is now 25 and far more mature in her office than most grown men there.
This idea that we are incapable of being responsible because our minds have not matured yet at age 20 and beyond is total BS. Call on all the studies that prove this but it’s a cop out to be honest.

I am not one of those who use the go to *in my day* as my younger siblings are also responsible and have been for years.

If we treat young people as children they will act as such! I’d also like to see the studies that explain why grown men and woman can act is such disgusting ways that cannot be justified by mental health problems or autism or some other form.

Profile photo of Patrick Taylor
Member

Kess – Perhaps your parents instilled good manners and some forethought to you and your sister when you were young? Bad behaviour is in the minority so we can take it that good social pressure does work.

I also do believe that games like chess at an early age make the brain develop to consider moves and outcomes perhaps earlier than for those who do not play chess. Gardening also provides lessons at looking at the longer term.

Other things aside though the facts remain that brains fully develop much later than most people think.

Profile photo of Beryl
Member

The question was: “Have you ever had a nuisance neighbour? Was it easy to resolve the problem?
Did your local authority help? My answer is a resounding yes to all three.

I have had cause to complain on a regular basis to neighbours during the 25 years I have lived here due to [a] barking dogs, [b] walls vibrating accompanied by a droning noise during the night which continued for 18 months before finding the cause, [c] wheelie bins parked in such a way they have regularly blocked my right of way to get mine through to be emptied, [d] my conservatory being bashed with footballs [e] constant banging and noises resembling a herd of elephants running up and down the stairs. [f] CCTV camera installed on top of a permanently parked vehicle overlooking and pointing in the direction of my garden, [g] neighbours dogs entering my garden and leaving their excrement behind, [h] neighbours tree that has grown so large it blocks out 90% of sunlight from my garden, [i] a blocked drain on a neighbours house causing the shared guttering to flood and overflow.

Have I complained? You bet I have and most complaints have been rectified or reduced to make life tolerable without repercussions and some have been referred to the environmental dept; but there is a way to go about it. First and foremost it is important to make it known the effect the problem is having on you. e.g. “There is a very distressed dog that lives here that is preventing me from enjoying my garden”. “I am finding it very difficult to get my bin through to be emptied.” This worked for a while but there was one occasion when actions were needed to speak louder than words. I moved the offending wheelie bin to a position right up against their gate so that it made it just as difficult for them to exit their garden with their own bin in the way as it was for me to get passed it. They soon got the message. “There is a football that keeps hitting my conservatory it might damage it.” On no account should you refer to the “little brat” responsible which would immediately invite a negative response!

In spite of all of this I have remained on reasonable terms with all of my neighbours, but always there has to be an element of compromise when living in close proximity to others. If you have tried the diplomatic approach to no avail then you should exercise your right to a peaceful existence and take the matter further and I don’t accept that the British are a docile lot. I prefer to categorise us as being more patient and tolerant than most.

Member
Robin Garreg says:
20 September 2014

One Saturday morning I smelled smoke and found I could not see across the drive. Investigating I found the neighbour feeding a bonfire with bits of his old caravan which he was demolishing. The smell of burning paint and plastic was eye watering. He refused to stop adding stuff to the fire and even threw on some aerosols which exploded.
I rang the Council Offices but only got a recorded message that they were closed until Monday. I phoned the Police but was told they were too busy with accidents and serious offences and to ring Envirenmental Services, I pointed out that they were not available out of office hours. I then tried the Fire Department who asked me if the smoke was coming through the floor and were not interested when I told them it was the smell of burning paint and plastic from my neighbour’s fire and told me to contact Environmental Services.
I did this on Monday morning and was asked if the fire was still burning. As it was not he said there was not much he could do but would investigate. He phoned me the next day and told me the neighbour had only been burning garden waste.
Why are Environmental Services not available at all times? Problems usually arise at Weekends and Evenings when people are not at work.

Member
Tired! says:
21 September 2014

We live next door to a family that owns chickens and a cockerel. They are a right pain in the ear. The cockerel crows at all hours during the day and early hours. We can’t leave the windows open on hot nights as we get woekn by the noise. We tried raising it in conversations with them and eventually after months and months they changes the sleeping arrangements for the cockerel and things improved temporarily. But is didn’t last and we ended up complaining to the council. They contacted the neighbours and installed some sound recording equipment to see how often/loud the noise was. However, this was a waste of time because although they agreed there was often noise from the bird, it didn’t register loud enough to constitute a nuisance. So, loud enough to wake us up at 4am / 5am and to make open windwos impossible, and to disrupt the quiet of the day, but apparently that doesn’t matter. It isn’t helped that the chickens make a hell of a racket too and run amok over our front garden. I don’t think the neighbours care – this is the same family whose ‘male of the house’ had a problem with his cra which meant it ended up in our front lawn and damaged our dry stone wall but didn’t even bother to come and a) tell us or b) apologise!
I can only clnclude that some people are very inconsiderate and that the council regulations lack any teeth.

Profile photo of Patrick Taylor
Member

Do you live in a rural area?

Member
Alan Rees says:
23 September 2014

A community mediation service can have a place to play in such disputes.

Regards,
Alan Rees

[Thanks for your comment, but we don’t allow the promotion of your own services. Thanks, mods.]

Member
Hardev says:
23 September 2014

I live in a small block of private flats where there are 6 flats in a block for the past peaceful 10 years untill the flat above me was sold and the new landloard have rented out the flat to the local councill.The new tennents (single parent with jobs less boyfriend) have made my life hell with noise all day long banging,door slamming ect-ect.I have complain to the local councill and the told me to take up this matter with the management company that looks after the maintence of the flats and I did just that. Its been 6 months now but still the noise issue is the same. I work shift work inc nights and dont get enough sleep and “I am completed stress out”.When I complained to the management company 6 months ago a few days later moron when up my garage and damage my garage roof there are 8 garages in a row and only my garage roof was damage with a big hole 6 feet wide.I have informed the police and they send a local community police officer and nothing after that. I now feel the law protects the criminals not for hard working people who pay their bills and keeping out of trouble. If anyone have any decent advice how I can resolve this issue (within the law) please share it with me,Thank You.

Profile photo of Patrick Taylor
Member

Unfortunately being on nightshift is not a condition considered in most leases who where there are limitations focus on night time restrictions on noise etc.

Examine your lease, or get a solicitor to do it for you. It is possible that there is a restriction on how the flat can be let in which case the management company is required to enforce the clauses. Non-letting to DHSS or to non-family [council] may just possibly be in newer leases.

Also the management company are they also the freeholders, or acting for the freeholders, or are you one of the six flats that own the freehold and employ the management company to act on your behalf. Your papers from the solicitor when you purchased should tell you that. You should also be getting annual accounts showing this information.

I hope you have not only reported the damage to the police but also to the Council, and the managing agents and the owner of the flat – via the management company. The managing agents should be arranging for the repair of the garage as I would expect the garage roof to be part of the leashold premises covered by insurance and the excess paid by the flat owners jointly in the annual/six monthly maintenenace charge. However reference to your lease would be needed to confirm this.

I would not expect in a flat dispute to reveal the name of a party complaining so that is awkward unless by deduction as everyone else is out during the day …..

Best of luck in an awkward and unfortunately not uncommon situation.

I am not au fait with council housing unwed mothers but do the council know that she has a live-in boyfriend? You may not wish to pursue that line.

Member
Dafydd says:
6 October 2014

We are in private rented accommodation & live next to an a 3 bedroom council house that is occupied by a lady in her 70’s, she has a son that visits regularly, even when she is not there. He strays for up to a couple of weeks at a time. He plays load music in his bedroom up to 3 or 4 in the morning. He slams the doors including the back door all through the night, he goes up to the shed at the top of the garden, making whooping noises. I think he is on some kind of medication & from time to time he stops taking it. My wife has a very stressful job & we can hear the music through the bedroom wall & it keeps her awake. I am not there during the week & only at home at the weekends & she feels intimidated by his actions. He has been next door the the last 3 weeks although his mother in not at home, he admitted to me a couple of months ago that he is not registered as living there & is only a visitor. What steps can we take to end our torment. When his mother is there she does try to keep him in order & has even got him to leave the property on occasions when his behaviour has been really out of order. We have tried talking to him but he just ignores us most of the time, but became quite abusive last time. We have tried talking his mother, she is lovely & we get on really well with her but her English is not very good at all, she is Asian & in her 70’s.

Member
moggy says:
8 November 2014

***NUISANCE NEIGHBOUR USING ULTRASONIC/INFRASONIC SOUND WAVE DEVICE****

Hi, can anybody help me to either solve this wave bombardment through the internal house wall for the last 9 months, or tell me how I can return the “favour” as I have now moved out of my home and living with daughter. The sound waves can’t be heard being low frequency, but can be felt through the head causing headaches, dizziness, blurred vision and nausea.I have tried many ways to stop this to no avail and I hope somebody out there who has witnessed or suffered this kind of sick behaviour and offer a genuine solution as I am at my wits end . Any comments will be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

Member
Scott says:
18 November 2014

concerning the noise issue from neighbours I have spoken to them several time about the noise and last time I spoke to them got nothing but a mouth full off abusive so as a result I contacted their landlord they spoke to their tenants several times and it went all quiet over the past few weeks the noise the levels have increased again, we contacted our neighbours again this morning and was met with abusive language and threaten with the use of violence. Have contacted their landlords again this morning and we have also called the police. We need some advice on how to deal with this issue as we do not want to be scared in our own home.

Member
Jason says:
25 November 2014

I have a nuisance neighbour I’m registered blind severely sight impaired (severe Glaucoma) we have a neighbours above me I’m on ground floor of a block of apartments that have had harassment which is still going on from loud noises e.g. shouting banging and loud music, I’ve been told by one of the members of their family to get back in side my flat or i will be beaten up this has been going on for over one year ten months i have gone to Guinness south over this matter it has been a living hell for me while Guinness south sorts the matter out i have gone to the housing ombudsman over the matter but after Guinness south has done the interview with the neighbours I’ve been told they can still live there under some rules i feel like this is Discrimination as they not listen to my needs and my guide dog and my self is scared to go out from all the noise and shouting.

We have called the police on them over the loud noise but when i take my guide dog out they shout from there windows at me, Well what happened on 25th November 2014 at 2:30am there was a group of police wanting to get in to the flat with police dog and so i let them in, i wake up in the morning and go out to my motorbility car with girlfriend and i feel a long the car like normal and there are makes all on one side of the car i call my girlfriend to come and look and she said someone has scratched the car with a key (its not hard to connect the dots) as neighbours are all smug about it.

we have been to the police over the matter and spent most of the day ringing around to find some help as i can’t afford to pay the excess of £75 to motorbility to get it repaired.

I’m very scared over this matter now as i have a bill to pay and i feel trapped Guinness south said they will give me points towards my search for a new place but there not many places out there, As i want to be closer to my family in suffolk.

Member

I own a flat in a small block and most of the other flats are are not owned by the people who live there. I have problems with noisy neighbours who regularly argue with each other, play music loudly and have noisy visitors until the early hours of the morning. I own an allocated parking space which neighbours have parked in night after night without asking my permission. After highlighting that the space was owned they moved their car but did not apologise for their behaviour. Our general waste bins are allocated to each flat and the room where they are stored is very small meaning to put mine out for collection I have to move other bins around. This is not a problem as I live alone and should not need to put the bin out for every collection. However my neighbours seem to prefer using my bin to their own. They do not have the good manners to ask if I mind them using the bin nor do they put the bin out for collection. Some people have no consideration for others. It does not cross their minds that their actions impact and inconveniance others. Sadly my neighbours are disrespectful and rude. Thankfully this is the first time I have experienced nuisance neighbours. Even better, I rarely see them so creating annoyances for them as the article suggests some people do is very appealing.

Member
Shadow says:
19 March 2015

I have a neighbour below me who lives noisily, not music just generally heavy handed with day to day living. Its one thing during the day, but he goes to bed really late so I am burned out through lack of regular sleep. I tried knocking on, he would never answer. I put lovely, friendly notes through the door asking him nicely and explaining I am not able to sleep. When nothing worked I contacted the Housing and they spoke to him. He denied it and made my life hell to make me suffer, calling me a snitch in a nasty voice when I tried knocking on.
I tried to be nice, I begged him in tears at the door. He won’t change. I am exhausted and am unable to move home. I have nowhere to go.
If I tell the housing again it will make him angry and cause a war, I am not well enough to cope with that kind of stress. I am a quiet person and don’t deserve this.
I feel powerless. It isnt ‘noisy’ enough to legally do much about it. Its just that he potters about loudly and it keeps me from sleeping.
What on earth can I do?

Profile photo of Patrick Steen
Member

Hello Shadow, I’m very sorry to hear about the problems you’re going through with your neighbour. Our guide may be of help: http://www.which.co.uk/consumer-rights/problem/what-can-i-do-about-nuisance-neighbours

If you need more help and you happen to be a Which? member, our Which? Legal team may be able to help you: http://legalservice.which.co.uk/

Sorry I can’t be of more help and good luck

Member
taxi driver says:
13 June 2015

I have noisy neighbours. During the summer months my garden is a no go area. My garden has never been so terribly un-kept as it is now. I do not enjoy gardening any more. I just do the basic minimum since it is so terribly unpleasant to spend time there. The neighbours children have scattered toys all around–they do not play they just throw the toys on concrete slabs to make as much noise as possible. The spoilt brat yells. shouts, screams and is generally unhappy. The parents do not mind the undisciplined behaviour, they just provide the kids with more toys and for ever buying more and more… When the rubber castle goes up I know, that more kids are invited to join in to make even more nuisance of themselves. We are seriously thinking of moving and either letting our property or selling. Will do anything to enjoy a few months of sunshine in the garden. It feels like living next door to a play-park where maladjusted/spoiled/uncontrolled children are screaming and shouting just for the sake of it. The main problem are the parents who do not care about the people who live in adjacent houses/gardens. They have no respect for anyone…..

Member
Elaine says:
6 July 2015

I totally sympathise. We moved into our house two years ago and now into our third Summer. Our neighbours have two children who have made our every Summer a misery. They do not talk they shout, scream yell at their parents for hours at a time. They are out every evening in the garden when the weather is okay for 3-4 hours and most weekends from 11 to 7ish in the evening. We are unable to enjoy our garden and have had to close double glazed windows in the heat and we can still hear them. Luckily we have not bought the property – we rent privately. The parents have seen and heard us complain and when I close the window the ‘man’ glares up at me. All we ask is a few hours in the garden and a bit of consideration? Amazingly the woman is a primary school teacher and regularly treats the garden like a creche.! We just had a weekend from hell when they inflated the swimming pool and several children came round. We again where driven out by the noise and had to sit in a friends garden! We had no problems in our previous house and they had five children. We are now looking to move as it is affecting our health but it makes me so angry that people can be so selfish and pass this on to their offspring. Like you I no longer enjoy my garden.

Member
sonia says:
13 June 2015

I would like to know why parents believe it is there god given right to impose their children on other people who are ENTITLED to quiet enjoyment of their own homes free from noise and disturbances.
We have to endure a bunch of children running banging thudding across our ceilings from 6am through to 9pm DAILY..
The parents never open their doors to anyone so we left a polite letter through their letterbox telling them that we are denied sleep and peace. The noise became worse. The suffering we are enduring is ruining our lives. People do not understand this unless they have unfortunately found themselves in the same position.
Parents who are too selfish and ignorant to teach their kids respect be warned…what goes around often comes around and one day you may well find yourselves driven to total stress and despair affecting your entire health and well being when another pair of ignorant parents with out of control kids move in above or next door to you…and SERVES YOU RIGHT. Luckily we have a fantastic in house management company who are now dealing very effectively with these idiots…they are not so smug now!!!

Member
Laura says:
25 June 2015

I’m a 25 year old freelancer and I work from home, I was raised to be mindful and considerate of neighbours so always try to keep noise to a minimum. However my neighbours through the wall clearly don’t feel the same. Every single day at around 8am I hear the mother screaming and swearing at her young kid, often to the point where the kid is screaming and crying back. This also happens during the day when I’m trying to concentrate on working on contracts, some with strict deadlines that have me working very late. At night too I hear arguments, shouting, screaming and screeching, often up to and past 12am. Its seriously annoying to say the least and making me super stressed and angry. But as they are clearly (from what I can hear through the wall) quite violent and aggressive I don’t feel like I can bring it up with them without suffering severe repercussions :\ I live alone and on ground floor too which makes it all the more intimidating.
I’ve done daft things to make them take the hint like changing my WiFi name to EVRRYONE CAN HEAR YOU ARGUING haha not exactly mature or productive but I’m starting to go out of my mind with this constant daily screaming and arguing, not really sure what to do :\

Member
Mrs Allen says:
11 May 2016

Neighbour bangs the doors her son is up and down the stairs all the time, and now she is switching the washing machine on and off to spin from 7pm until midnight
everynight
I have spoken to the council , they said to keep records , I have done all this before, had a machine put in my house to pick up the noise, which was a waist of time , didn’t pick up any thing
neighbour told council she has to bang the doors to shut them
She switches washing machine on and off to spin every night until midnight
It can be heard above m tv
IV had enough I don’t know what else to do
her garden is overgrown, hedging is way above my fence
which I have to pay out to have it trimmed back
She don’t put any rubbish out , she store down the side of her house for three weeks
then drives three miles to the dump
Her and her son are neighbours from hell
She is very arrogant

Profile photo of duncan lucas
Member

Mrs Allen- I take it you live in a council house , I do not know your personal circumstances and as I have been criticized for saying when I lived in a bought flat in a city with students under me holding all night parties I stuck my hi-fi system on the floor with 100 W speakers facing down and played bagpipe music back at them I will not tell you to do that. But is it affecting your health ? mentally or physically ? if so apply to the council for a transfer by getting a doctors line or get a man friend to “speak to them ” if you know what I mean you dont have to put up with it ,get other neighbours backing to help you I know , you shouldnt be inconvenienced but it depends on who you know to help you and how long you can stand it without something happening . I take it also it was the Environmental Health -Noise Pollution Department who installed the noise detector ? You could get private people in to take measurements and if they exceed the limits after 10/11 PM at night you could take them to court . As far as the hedge is concerned you have the legal right to cut off any overlapping bushes onto your side of the fence and deposit it on their side as they own the hedge and you are complying to regulations . Or how about a pet ? namely a barking dog that barks every time they make a noise they wouldn’t like that and if they complained well tell them to keep the noise down and your dog wouldn’t bark. Maybe a cockerel that crows continually , as I said you have to do something , doing nothing will just make you ill and anybody that does that deserves action taken against them even if it is slightly illegal at least it will draw attention to your problem , get the local newspaper involved too.

Member
hater of tresspassers says:
1 August 2016

HI I live on an end bungalow beside a car park where recently meaning today, two lads been fixing their car and using my wall to actually leave their crap! I don’t know them and know it is petty but it’s bad enough I get kids where I live using the wall for playing on, going to try grow some hawthorne plant which police said might work. I get very irritated by this but it creates a bad example if adults use MY WALL to put their stuff on and the kids copy them! Yes I like to moan but I pay rent. I hate the summer and can’t wait until the winter comes where you hardly see people as British winters can be mostly wet and windy.
Hells Bells.

Profile photo of John Ward
Member

Hawthorn’s good but Pyracantha [‘Firethorn’] is better – widely available at garden centres or on-line and has pretty red or orange berries. It will grow quite quickly to over two metres and looks good against a wall.

Profile photo of malcolm r
Member

So is an electric fence – Obstructica Pyrotechnica “Electra”. 🙁 🙂

Profile photo of wavechange
Member

Pyracantha – nature’s equivalent of barbed wire, and much more attractive.

Profile photo of Patrick Taylor
Member

Berberis is also good and if anything even more vicious . But you can eat the berries and the height seems better

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Berberis_vulgaris
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pyracantha

Member

Yes Berberis is excellent for property defence ,sharp thorns that bring the skin up in welts if scratched. There is also Blackthorn ,Hawthorn,Roses of course,Mahonia, Pyracanthra, Buckthorn , there’s plenty of choice that’ll deter loiterers.

Profile photo of John Ward
Member

Not forgetting Holly – a most attractive defence.