/ 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
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

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.

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.

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.

So is an electric fence – Obstructica Pyrotechnica “Electra”. πŸ™ πŸ™‚

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

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

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.

Not forgetting Holly – a most attractive defence.

So tired says:
16 December 2017

I know this is an old conversation now, but I arrived by googling.

‘only 22% contacted their local authority or environmental health department.
I was pretty shocked at this.’
-I’m not at all shocked. The reason that many, like myself who have been through hell with problem neighbours, will not contact services to deal with noise is because it must be documented when trying to sell your house. It is even asked if you have ever had cause to contact the neighbours over any problems. This will render the house almost unsellable, therefore people suffer instead, even if they’ve been lucky enough that the problem has stopped.

That’s interesting and something I have never heard about. Where is the information recorded?

I’m sorry to hear that you are having problems.

On the standard pre-contract forms that solicitors and conveyancers use [the Sellers Property Information Form] there is a question about whether there is or has been any dispute with a neighbour. When completed, this form goes to the buyer. The dispute can be either way. I can understand why home-owners are reluctant to formalise a disagreement or objection unless it is extremely detrimental and its resolution would benefit, or enhance the value of, the property.

At our previous house with its large garden we had seven adjoining property owners plus the highway authority. Luckily we were able to declare that there had not been any disputes during our period of ownership despite provocation in two cases. It can cut both ways, of course – if a neighbour behaves unreasonably or offensively in some way it could frustrate their chances of selling to have a dispute on their record, but impeding their removal is not the desired outcome in most cases I would suggest.

Thanks John. I had forgotten about that. I was assuming that ‘So tired’ was referring to the authorities recording details of disputes.

In our case it would be sheep behaving unreasonably…

Having watched odd episodes of “Neighbours from hell” you wonder how people tolerate the misery it seems to cause. What surprises me is why on earth people take part in these programmes – are they contrived? I would not want to display my nastiness to all my acquaintances on the box.(I’m really quite nice and am kind to animals and old people).