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To ask if you have problems with your neighbours

(31 Posts)
AnotherJaffaCake Mon 01-Aug-11 09:10:28

How do you feel when you get inside your own home? Do you feel safe and secure and laugh it off in the knowledge that they are sad gits with nothing else to do with their time? Or do you still feel shaky and wonder whether life is too short for this kind of stress and think about moving house?

We're in two minds what to do for the best. We've only been in our house since spring last year and have had to put up with numerous problems with our neighbours on one side who are just plain nasty and thuggish.

Our dilemma is - do we put up with it for now and move when we've got some money together to buy something nice, off an estate with our own access and driveway or do we say enough's enough and get the hell out before the stress kills us.

northerngirl41 Mon 01-Aug-11 09:26:37

I think it depends an awful lot what they are doing - if they are simply being annoying within noise ordnances, I don't think there's a thing you can do about it apart from put up, save up and get out.

If they are actually breaking anti-social behaviour laws, then there is quite a lot you can do about it, even if it makes things more unpleasant in the short term.

Fuzzled Mon 01-Aug-11 10:52:29

We had lovely neighbours, but with a stereo from hell. Although they always turned it down when asked, it got to the point where we were waiting on tenterhooks for it to start.

We moved. Life's too short to stress.

hermionestranger Mon 01-Aug-11 11:02:58

I feel your pain. Been in since last November and our house is back on the market. I feel constantly on edge living here.

snippywoo2 Mon 01-Aug-11 11:12:38

Put your house on the market and move. Don't make any complaints about them because I'm sure if there are any records of you having troubles with the neighbours you still have to tell the people interested in your property and that will put them off. This happened to me and my OH 8yrs ago, we had to sell at a knock down price to get rid of it in the end.

Mishy1234 Mon 01-Aug-11 11:24:44

I agree with snippywoo2. We had issues with the neighbours in the last house (elderly couple, hugely nosey and partially deaf- VERY loud TV). We thought about waiting it out in case they moved (we LOVED the house), but sold in the end. They are still there, so glad we moved.

Definitely don't make any complaints as you have to declare them when you sell. Make the move asap. You will be much happier when you do, even if you have to move to a smaller house like we did.

TheFlyingOnion Mon 01-Aug-11 11:26:55

I moved.

I couldn't sit and relax in the garden, or chat to my other (nice) neighbour over the fence with there being a problem... when she started looking through my windows, I moved.

I rented though, so it was much easier....

Mitmoo Mon 01-Aug-11 11:31:44

I agree with those who say don't make a complaint. I had a boundary dispute with my neighbours, the previous owner put in a letter to support the neihbours with their claim which contradicted what was put in the sellers report. They put that there were no issues over the boundary.

If I had lost the case with the neighbours I'd have gone sue mental against the previous owners.

If there is a dispute over anything you have to declare it.

mamalocco Mon 01-Aug-11 11:43:19

Move. The best thing we ever did. When we used to turn into our road it was with a feeling of dread, now I love coming home. Life is too short and the things that bother you will just escalate.

BlimminEck Mon 01-Aug-11 11:46:39

am very lucky with all my neighbours

young couple on one side with two small boys, couple on the other with one older girl

very nice people, never a minute's nuisance. In fact we were probably the bigger nuisance when son was learning drums lol

emptyshell Mon 01-Aug-11 11:47:49

Ours are fantastic - one side is a builder and did some work for us and the quality of it is really really good (he fitted us a new back gate) and he's always happy to help advise us if we find something like a leak or similar - and tells us off if he catches us buying things like screws as he's usually got something in his garden shed (although when he was offering my hubby an axe - we were cutting a tree back in the garden at the time - I could have got a bit worried).

The other side - had words with us for doing DIY at 9am when we'd just moved in and we thought "oh shit - gonna be a nightmare" but his son works nights so we agreed a banging time to start - he has quite noisy late night barbecues (his record's 5am still going in a union jack top hat for the royal wedding) but the whole street's invited so it's not a problem (neither other side has kids and we're usually laughing our heads off at what we hear) and then the following week you've got a steady stream of borrowed chairs/barbecues/gazebos and everything being reunited across most of the street (accompanied by a collective hangover that's very amusing to watch).

We did actually buy the house because of the neighbours though - we rented three doors down the street to start with and liked the people and community feel so bought when the chance came up. For a street with really bad parking - the fact that people talk to each other and work things out (next door know hubby's always at work in the morning so if they're nipping in and out they'll bag our spot, they also know I'm shite at parking so leave me an extra bit of space to get in and out of, if one guy's having a barbie he'll wedge his car onto his block paved front of house so the street parking's not affected) makes it a good place to live (we've got one set of wankers further up the street but that's about it). It's the sort of street where people regularly are passing lawnmowers over the fences or slotting out their fence panels to relax across 2 houses' gardens though and pretty rare to have somewhere like that these days.

Mitmoo Mon 01-Aug-11 11:53:16

The neighbours who were so hung up on the 6" of my garden they thought they owned, and getting my fence removed have both died in the last six months, it seems like such a waste of a way to have spent your life fixating on bits of mud.

And no I didn't murder them wink

AnotherJaffaCake Mon 01-Aug-11 13:46:29

I just think it is really sad that so many of us have problem neighbours. DH has a theory something along the lines that it is all the fault of planners and architects who design housing estates with shared access/driveways, houses with windows that look directly down into neighbouring gardens (no privacy), not enough parking (loads of families have two cars or even three cars but room for only one) - we took out a small part of our front garden to put in some extra parking for our second car, small gardens with not enough room for children to play in. There's little or no community spirit any more, and people have become intolerant of living in close proximity to other people.

Also, round our way families can't afford the bigger family-sized houses and end up living in the smaller ones, whilst elderly retired couples buy the family-sized houses and then see it as grounds for complaint if a family even so much as dares to buy a house near them. By family sized house I mean something with three bedrooms or more.

And what can I say about fences? Like Mitmoo I think they can often be a major source of stress.

mrslevy Mon 01-Aug-11 14:22:06

It's awful. I feel so sorry for you. My neighbours weren't violent or loud - they were outwardly very respectable which meant that people believed them for a long while.

So much harassment from them in the form of lies to neighbours, the police and council, damage and petty theft, legal letters and a boundary dispute which dragged on for four years that they lost because it was completely unreasonable.

I'm glad we stayed and she fucked off but I felt under siege in my own home for four years. I would dread yet another fat legal letter landing on the mat. Even though I knew it was lies and felt sure we'd win it was so worrying. Plus, it cost us money to respond, but not as much as they wasted on it.

That was bad enough but I don't know what I'd do if they'd been thugs like your neighbours.

Probably move, I expect, but I understand how angry and frustrated you feel. We felt indignant at the idea that we should move. Why should she drive us out? We love it here.

We spent every day for four years talking about her. I lost half a stone during the three day court hearing. I can understand how marriages break up. Thank god we didn't have anything else serious to contend with because I think we'd have gone round the twist.

One thing I would say is do not be afraid of making a formal complaint in case you jeopardise a sale. If the sale's going to go through imminently, then bite your tongue, but these things sometimes do drag on and you might reach the stage where you have to say something to someone - the council, the police, your solicitor - especially if the people are threatening or abusive.

And you don't have to declare every dispute. If it's resolved, there's no need. Not saying you want to fight every battle but don't be afraid not to.

Good luck with whatever you decide

mrslevy Mon 01-Aug-11 14:24:00

Oh I forgot about seeing them in the street. I'm really not a shrinking violet but some days I couldn't bear to go out in my garden in case I saw her sneering face.

scaredwhatsnext Mon 01-Aug-11 15:08:25

I think you should move . We are in a similar situation only my neighbours are damaging our property and bullying my eldest ds . They have driven into and keyed my car on four occasions . The last time they did this i called the police who advised us to move (our house was already up for sale at that time)
They have turned the local children against my son and they call him a retard etc whenever he leaves the house (he rarely goes out) . They pull their blinds right up when ever anyone comes or goes into my house to glare at them .
They are an absolute nightmare to live beside but the housing market has fallen flat on its face here (Ireland) so we have had to take our house off the market and wait another few years before we can afford to move.

aliceliddell Mon 01-Aug-11 15:20:36

I'm OK at present, but was having this conversation with a friend yesterday. There seems no effective way to deal with all this stuff. The fact youcan't sell if you've complained is crazy. The council here do nothing re. noise except send info on how to take your neighbours to court. Obviously unworkable and guaranteed to escalate an already difficult situation. It's a bit crap, really.

MadamDeathstare Mon 01-Aug-11 15:28:04

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PenguinPatter Mon 01-Aug-11 15:32:16

Both - it me as a SAHP that takes the brunt of it.

Their first issue was a fence they owned they wanted us to replace - but there have been a succession of other things. She has spent alot of time bad mouthing us to local community - have met people despite this but some people have walked away from us. I've come to realise that she may be well know but isn't well liked or always believed.

It can be intimidating when I'm coming back or leaving house and have to walk past her with friends, neighbours or family looking. I won't garden out the front with out DH there as they come out and just stare.Thing is she has had to walk past me when I'm with friends in the street and form her OTT behaviour I know she is not comfortable doing so.

I'm aware we use the garden less then we would. I went to a relatives house with a seating area and realise how much I've been missing that. They've talked loudly of legal action over trees we have - which do not block their light, over hang or are closer than recommended to their house - but they drop leaveshmm - but other neighbours have closer trees and both deciduous and non and get no hassle and we've had nothing come through. Their relatives when street is empty park over our driveway -honestly it is like they are looking for a fight.

If we could move I would - but are trying to hang on for a bit till DH job is settled and DC are bit nearer secondary school age plus house in area aren't selling at the moment.

At the minute I in pissed off mode which helps - it affects me most when we have other stressful stuff going on then its an added pressure and it taken the shine of our first house and affects how I view our DC early years.

If money was less an issue and a move to different part of UK was off the cards - I would move in a heart beat just to get away from it.

nomoreheels Mon 01-Aug-11 15:58:22

We have problems with one neighbour & her teen sons who have no concept of volume. Things came to a head when they had a string of 5 parties that forced us to decamp to another room to sleep, but I could still hear the noise. I was heavily P at the time too.

I tried the polite friendly approach. She kept promising to keep it down & even gave me her mobile number so I could text when it was late & noisy. When I did text her though, she showed her true colours & sent me 4 abusive texts in a row. I didn't respond & my DP went round to tell her off the next day. She said she was drunk & partying with her sons & their friends. At least he made her feel ashamed - the parties do seem to have stopped. They still blare crap music from the attic with the window wide open at random times though. I can gear the thud-thud of the bass right now.

I utterly despise her & her family & can't wait to move. Am hoing the market picks up next spring. Until then we delight in rainstorms as at least it makes them shut up.

I plan to move to somewhere in the country with no direct neighbours.

thesunshinesbrightly Mon 01-Aug-11 16:13:03

I have the neighbours from hell!

I do not feel safe amongest other things and i can't wait to move.

Think i would rather be dead than live here for any amount of time...i hate it and the fact i feel like a prisoner in my own home.

soymama Mon 01-Aug-11 16:22:46

Our neighbours daughter pooped in an a cup and threw it into our garden,where my DS (2) plays. sad

We moved here because our last neighbours were horrific. I don't want to say anything as we just want a quiet life.

(runs off to buy a lottery ticket)

PenguinPatter Mon 01-Aug-11 17:26:20

The 'both' was to questions in OP - about getting stressed or thinking its their issues.

It is just one side we have issues and one half of the couple though her DH and DC obviously only hear what she says and god alone knows what that is.

Lived lots of places before both with and without DC and never had any problems what so ever. I can't help worrying though that any subsequent house moves might be the same - which is illogical really.

PenguinPatter Mon 01-Aug-11 17:27:30

soymama -sad I think I still be inclined to say something about their DC disturbed behaviour as that really isn't normal.

2littlegreenmonkeys Mon 01-Aug-11 18:28:45

We moved from our last house due to neighbours from hell, I didn't feel safe and hated returning home from work/shopping/night out etc.

It was the best thing for us, we managed to move to a better area and a slightly bigger house, but I would have still moved to a smaller house. I was just desperate to move, life was unbearable there.

The neighbours we have now are lovely, although next door but one on both sides have dogs which bark a lot. The family on one side have dealt with it so don't hear the dogs a lot now, only occasionally. The other neighbour is a bit of a twat TBH but is harmless really. He is a twat as he seems to think it is normal for a dog to bark constantly (literally) for hours on end. Although to give him credit it doesn't happen all the time now which it used to.

Both of our immediate next door neighbours (full terraced street) are lovely, lone guy one side and never, ever hear him. Chatty and nice. Family the other side who are lovely and very chatty, we hear them but normal everyday noise IYSWIM.

Then my neighbour and very good friend who lives a few doors up is fan-bloody-tastic. Lots of other neighbours to say hello to and what not, no cross words TBH. Lovely place to live and I am very reluctant to move away from here, although we will need to within the next 3-4 years for more space.

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