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How would you deal with this neighbour?

(8 Posts)
LostMyDotBrain Thu 13-Apr-17 12:34:19

I used to get on with my upstairs neighbour, until he got a job with funny hours and started leaving his large dog howling upstairs while he was at work. It was waking DD (only 1yo at the time) and after several attempts at speaking to him about it, he got aggressive and started swearing at me in the hallway. I ended up getting our housing association involved and they spent 8 months getting him to get rid of the dog as he wasn't actually allowed it. (The dog isn't actually gone, but nor is it left alone for 12+ hours at a time anymore so it's neither here nor there).

So there's a history of noise complaints. And every time his children are staying the night, it's very noisy too. This is usually above my living room though so I ignore it (or try my best to) because it doesn't wake DD.

Last night however, the noise was above both of our bedrooms too. And it wasnt normal playing noise. He, his children, and I now realise 2 extra children, were all jumping off furniture (as part of some game or other I imagine). My light fittings were swinging because the ceiling was vibrating so much. This was going on from a bit before 9pm until at least 11:30pm when I had to take DD to DM's to get some sleep. (Not entirely relevant but I worked 13 hours on my feet yesterday and the day becore so not being able to sleep really was torture). This is the third time in total that I've had to do this due to excessive noise upstairs. I tried to knock on and speak to him but he ignored me.

I've spoken to the HA today and they've basically said that they don't legally have to get involved until there's a large body of evidence. They advise to go to the environmental health and get all the monitoring equipment fitted...even though the majority of the time things are now quieter. They acknowledge that it's an ongoing thing that they did used to deal with but say they've had to make cuts and essentially unless he was threatening me with violence, they will no longer get involved in antisocial behaviour.

How would you go about sorting this? AIBU to not want to get the environmental health involved to listen in on everything for months in order to present the HA with 'adequate evidence' that his noise levels do on occasion massively exceed what is acceptable? AIBU to think that they should at least in the first instance talk to this neighbour? It just doesn't feel like the route they're presenting is proportionate because it will pick up on all of the excessive noise, not just the occasions I'm not willing to ignore.

user1491572121 Thu 13-Apr-17 12:39:54

We lived in a HA flat on the upper floor in a block of four. My neighbour below used to complain daily about the noise and we felt terrible but we were just walking about and I was constantly telling my DC to be quiet but in reality, you can't hover or have silent children.

It's just that flats are completely innapropriate for children full stop.

If you lived on the upper floor and had more than one baby, you'd probably be the person making the noise OP.

He sounds awful....the dog thing sounded dreadful and the swearing and allowing his kids to jump on furniture that late is terrible too.

But as you say, he's generally not that bad....you say he's quieter the majority of the time so you probably have no way out of this situation other than to move.

LostMyDotBrain Thu 13-Apr-17 12:47:31

I do get that upper floor flats are worse for noise and I ignore most of the noise because of that, I promise grin But just occasionally it goes well beyond what anyone would find acceptable. There is no way that they weren't actually jumping off furniture last night.

user1491572121 Thu 13-Apr-17 13:07:49

They probably were....but when we had the complaints from our old neighbour, it was always after an "out of the ordinary" incident...something like a birthday party or if the DC had a friend for a sleepover.

We felt terrible...as I'm sure you do...but without literally making our children sit silently, there wasn't a lot we could do.

I banned running in the flat as soon as we moved in...I told them why and they didn't run. There were no balls allowed indoors, no loud toys...but a child playing an ordinary game, sounded like thunder to our neighbour and our HA told us that they'd never "police" ordinary children's noise.

Can you move?

LostMyDotBrain Thu 13-Apr-17 13:27:33

Realistically, no, not at the moment. And to be honest I don't feel like that should be my only option. This wasn't a birthday party...it was close to midnight when we ended up having to go elsewhere to get some sleep. Running and playing with a ball upstairs in the day is precisely the kind of stuff I ignore. This wasn't that either.

pinkie1982 Thu 13-Apr-17 13:52:46

Pop a note through the door. We have been emergency rehoused twice from flats due to bad neighbours for our safety (promise none of it was provoked by us). It will be in his tenancy agreement not to do things to disrupt other tenants, the HA should acknowledge this and write to him. This can be done by a HO and not get ABS team involved.

Noise through flats is a given and one that most of the time you just have to suck up and live with.

Do your HA have an internal transfer list that they can place you on? Or Homeswapper to look at exchanges?

I appreciate that you don't want to move just because of this but seems if your neighbour has become aggressive and takes no heed of the rules then he isn't going to care whether a bit of noise bothers you. Do you think complaining will just make him want to make more noise to annoy you?

Stormtreader Thu 13-Apr-17 14:04:53

If you want them to do anything then you have to record it and officially raise a complaint with environmental health.

They cant do anything more effective simply on your say-so of "they are very loud" otherwise those crotchety people who complain at the slightest whisper of noise would be getting people evicted left, right and centre.

LostMyDotBrain Thu 13-Apr-17 16:43:35

That's sort of why I don't want to go through the environmental health though...I don't want him evicted.

Maybe I'm just being soft though. I know I dismiss a lot of it as family noise despite knowing it's not. He's got quite a petty mentality. He went more than 6 months without ever taking the bins out to be emptied on bin day after a previous neighbour had a word with him about something else.

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