Noise is one of the most common complaints in apartment communities. Clustered housing brings singles, families, young and old together in closer proximity. This can create lasting friendships for many residents. And for some, the noise levels can be too much.
It's important that residents be thoughtful about their approach to addressing noise issues. Remember that you live here and so does your neighbor. You're both entitled the peaceful enjoyment of your homes.
Last week's column dealt with checking out the neighborhood before you move and researching noise ordinances. This week we deal with what to do when the noise happens.
If your neighbors upstairs are hosting a one-time Friday-night party that is disturbing you, it may be best to let it go and let them enjoy.
If your next-door neighbor is hosting boisterous gatherings all the time and they keep you and your family awake, it's time to address the issue with your neighbor (if you feel comfortable). A short, but clear conversation about the noise levels and its impact on your enjoyment of your home should do it. Try to be polite but direct.
If the noise issues continue, it's time to visit with your community manager and log a complaint. The management will keep a record of the issue, and this could be important if your noisy neighbor becomes a nuisance. Your community manager can also help to deal with construction noise and work with the contractors to limit the hours or impact.
Apartment communities are hubs of activity and connections. It's important that you do your part to keep noise levels at an acceptable level and have reasonable expectations about noise in a community.
You can use fans inside your home to dull outside noise. Furniture arrangement can help, too. If your bed or couch sits close to a window, there may be more noise in that part of the room. Consider a little redecoration to mitigate noise, and sound machines are great for light sleepers.