arcanium's Profile

Display Name: arcanium
Member Since: 2/28/10

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Re: "It takes a village" to raise a children, my response has always been "And the village is telling you to keep your kids quiet."

I know that moving into the city from the suburbs can be overwhelming at first, but you have to get used to the fact that there are other people living in close proximity to you and that yes, occasionally, they will remind you they exist by making some noise. Parties happen, radios and TVs get played, people talk, shout and occasionally even sing too loud. As I'm typing this I'm listening to some neighbor cranking up bluegrass music and having a good old time.

It's key to figure out what is reasonable noise and what is not. We all have a good idea about reasonable noise levels and hours -- if my neighbor is still clapping and hooting along to his music at midnight, there will be an issue -- and the key is learning the correct time and place for a complaint. Check your local city's noise ordinances.

Also, get to know your neighbors. That personal connection makes a difference, I prefer to believe that most people are considerate by default and even more so when they know the person their behavior might impact. It also makes requesting "hey… would you mind keeping it down?" much easier.

But if you do know the local law, and if you do know your neighbors, and if the noise truly is unreasonably loud, then you can do two things:

1. Sue. Small claims court. To keep it brief, small claims court is generally more about equity than law in most jurisdictions, which means that the judge has a great deal of leeway to decide if your neighbor should be fined for being a jerk. Some people simply do not learn how to be considerate until they're kicked in the wallet.

2. You might consider playing dirty. It is amazing how much ill will you can brew between your landlord and your offending neighbors by calling various city regulatory departments and making complaints (building safety and sanitation is a good start) and using your neighbor's name for the complaint. I've dispatched two LOUD and inconsiderate neighbors this way. Please don't consider this as something to do for a first response, you really shouldn't touch the big guns until every other alternative has been explored.

As for really loud sex sounds, I have a misanthropic friend who likes to stand at the window of his apartment and shout "YOU'RE DOING IT WRONG!" to his enthusiastic neighbors.

Noisy Neighbors and Outdoor Spaces Austin | Apartment Therapy Los Angeles
2/28/10 01:55 AM