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Neighbour DIY noise, how much is too much?

(14 Posts)
missingcaravan Fri 07-Nov-14 09:18:22

Our neighbour moved in just over a year ago and has been doing renovations to his house on and off (mostly on) ever since. He works full time so almost every evening and every weekend for a year we have had to listen to hammering, drilling, sawing etc. He usually starts at about 7am on weekends and goes on well into the evening.

Recently though it seems to be going on later and later. On some weeknights he won't even start until 8 or 9pm and wakes up our 2 year old DD (she goes to bed at 7pm). He has also taken to setting up his work bench in the back garden and doing a lot of his work out there. The other night he started using an electric saw out in the garden at about 9pm and as DD's room is at the back of the house and we are in a terraced house he might as well have been sawing in her room it was so loud!

Last night he was hammering and drilling until after 11pm, this was especially annoying as he was doing work in the room adjoining our bedroom and DH had to be up for work at 5am.

I think that we should (politely) have a word but DH doesn't think we should risk falling out with our neighbour. We have never complained before because we understand that there is usually a lot of work to do on a house when you first move in but it's been over a year now and I've just had enough. I feel as though we can't ever properly relax because whenever we're not at work, we're listening to his banging and clattering. It's starting to get me down.

So are our neighbours DIY habits completely normal/acceptable or am I right in thinking it's too much?

LadyHamiltonsPussy Fri 07-Nov-14 09:21:56

Totally unacceptable. But if you haven't told them it's causing you a problem they may well think you are fine with it.

Sounds miserable. I can't understand why anyone would be so inconsiderate.

MrsPiggie Fri 07-Nov-14 09:29:29

DIY at 11pm is unacceptable (OK, it might be acceptable if you've got an emergency, like a burst pipe). I would generally say that noise making DIY should stop at 9pm and not start before 8-9am. But I would be more curious about the improvements he's been doing for more than a year - is he rebuilding his house from scratch?? Are you friendly with this guy, can you have a polite word or is it likely to turn confrontational?

poolomoomon Fri 07-Nov-14 09:56:32

Completely unacceptable. Noisy DIY should end at 9pm and start no earlier than 8 am IMO. Have a polite word, he may not realise you hear it quite as loudly as you do or have an issue with it.

missingcaravan Fri 07-Nov-14 09:58:26

I wouldn't say friendly exactly, we say hello when we see him and he says hello back. DH has made small talk over the fence on the odd occassion when they've both been out working in the garden. He seems pleasant enough, I doubt he'd turn nasty if we had a word. DH just doesn't like upsetting anybody really. He's much nicer than I am grin

KnittedJimmyChoos Fri 07-Nov-14 10:00:06

no thats too much and to regular. def have a word, if he is horrid to you, he wasnt worth being in with in hte first place most people do not realise and ask nicely

to put into context my reli has been doing up his house and been screamed at for putting a picture into a wall at 7pm

TwoAndTwoEqualsChaos Fri 07-Nov-14 10:05:43

I would start by talking to him. Our Council has time limits for contractors on a site, but notDiY; you'd have to go down the Environmental Health noise nuisance route.

avocadotoast Fri 07-Nov-14 10:33:52

Definitely unacceptable. In a house I lived in a few years ago we had neighbours doing constant DIY. We managed to agree that it wouldn't go on past 9pm (and we were all just finished being students, I dread to think what it'd be like if you have kids).

He may not even know how much the noise carries. Speak to him, surely he'll be reasonable.

kitchensinkmum Fri 07-Nov-14 10:46:27

My neighbour has been there for 14 years ! And does very noisy DIY on every nice summer day, every Sunday all day and when ever we sit in our garden. Always uses power tools , makes dust and all sorts of air pollution . Makes everyone miserable

OOAOML Fri 07-Nov-14 10:51:09

The people through the wall from us (we are in a tenement flat and they were in the next stair, so didn't actually know them) went through what appeared to be the slowest ever room renovation a couple of years ago. They used to start about 8/9 at night and it went on for ages. I remember banging really loudly on the wall one evening when I was trying to watch something on TV and couldn't hear it even with the volume up at max.

Check your council website - I'm sure there are local rules on noise etc. I know ours had a number to report it, I was on the verge of doing so.

WienerDiva Fri 07-Nov-14 11:14:05

We renovated our house a couple of years ago, we were living at mum's and DH worked long hours, sometimes wouldn't get to the house until 8pm, so it could only be done in the evenings and weekends.

We knew the ndn had small children and one evening DH got carried away with time and at 9.30pm the ndn knocked on the door and asked him to stop making noise. He felt terrible and they can up with an agreement. DH wouldn't do "noisy" work after 9pm and at weekends not before 8am.

It did take us longer but that's tough titties on our part, shouldn't have bought a museum of a terrace house!

Definitely have a word, the reason it's kept going on is because nobody has pointed out it's bothering them.

championnibbler Fri 07-Nov-14 11:17:50

Report it. Don't even bother approaching him. Let the authorities sort him out. he's more likely to pay attention to them anyway.

Peaceloveandbiscuits Fri 07-Nov-14 12:33:13

Do you live on my street? I've had this exact situation going on for the past three months and I finally snapped last week and made an official complaint to Environmental Health. I'd already been round on numerous occasions after 9pm asking them to keep it down, so it wasn't as if the complaint was out of the blue. I just hate inconsiderate bastards who don't think of others. I try really hard to keep my noise nuisance levels down out of respect for my neighbours, and I expect the same from them sad
In my experience the council sent the neighbours a letter warning them that a complaint had been made and that they needed to start respecting approved time scales for DIY, or the complaint would be escalated. They also sent me diary sheets to keep note of further disturbances, though they did tell me that in most cases the warning letter is enough to make people think twice about what they're doing.
You have my deepest sympathy. Consider talking to him or making a complaint, though, because staying quiet won't get you anywhere. My DH is the same as yours, won't get involved in conflict, even when I'm crying myself to sleep because of the noise!! So I end up getting into a rage and going round when I'm feeling less than reasonable. Infuriating.

missingcaravan Fri 07-Nov-14 14:04:23

Thanks for all your responses. Glad to know I'm not alone in thinking it's not acceptable. I'm going to have a polite word with him as I'd rather speak to someone directly than go behind their back and make a complaint. Hopefully just me mentioning it will be enough to make him a bit more considerate. If nothing changes though I will have to take it further.

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