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Accept this as part and parcel of living in a flat or not?

(59 Posts)
KnobZombie7 Sun 21-Jan-18 19:42:55

DM recently sold flat and moved into a rented property on a short term tenancy before deciding if she wants to stay in a new area. Have been staying with her to get her settled.

Neighbours in the flat next door, in the same converted property, have woken us up between 4.30 and 6.00 AM 6 out of 8 mornings since she moved in. They cook during this time; it's very spicy/ chilli-based food and the smell as well as the clanking around- and what sounds like hammering nails into the wall but is probably tenderising meat- in the kitchen wakes us up as their kitchen shares a party wall with the living room and part of the bedroom.

Their cooking smells and accompanying noise can last for two or three hours. Is it unreasonable to approach their LL? (Different LL to DM's) We introduced ourselves and asked them if they could refrain from cooking at night as it's waking us up, but they said they have a lot of food to cook and need to get started early, so 'no', basically.

It's a couple, no kids, probably in their 50s. They cook during the day too - we appreciate this is not unreasonable!

Was our request of not cooking at night/ early hours of the morning unreasonable? Would it be unreasonable to approach their LL or should she just put up with it for the next six months?

ClaryFray Sun 21-Jan-18 19:45:02

Approach land lord and report it to council as noise

KnobZombie7 Sun 21-Jan-18 19:46:35

Thank you ClaryFray

Do you think the council would regard it as noise nuisance if it is caused by poor insulation/ conversion?

Didntcomeheretofuckspiders Sun 21-Jan-18 19:47:02

Is this some kind of back alley takeaway or something? Why do they need to be cooking large quantities of food so often that they have to get up in the small hours?!

I wouldn’t say that it’s normal, no! Maybe seek advice from environmental health? I don’t really know, it’s just bizarre!

Notasperfectasallothermners Sun 21-Jan-18 19:47:05

Before 7 am is classed as anti social behaviour so def report. .

HerBigChance Sun 21-Jan-18 19:47:07

It really isn't reasonable of them to be clanking around and cooking strong smelling food at that time of the morning.

DingDongDenny Sun 21-Jan-18 19:47:56

It sounds like they are running a business, there is no way they are eating all that food themselves. In which case it is highly likely they aren't complying with food preparation regulations

Els1e Sun 21-Jan-18 19:47:58

As suggested I would speak to landlord and local council. Sounds like they might be running some sort of business, which hopefully is not allowed under the lease.

KnobZombie7 Sun 21-Jan-18 19:51:30

Could be a business but they live in a bedsit. Basically one room with a bathroom. DM doesn't want to complain in case they may be cooking food and giving it to a shelter. No idea where she got that idea from though.

Good to know that officially, noise before 7am is considered anti-social.

StargazyDrifter Sun 21-Jan-18 19:53:28

That's not reasonable, as others have said before 7am isn't acceptable and the council noise team should be told about the noise nuisance. Not sure if the smells also amount to a different nuisance but council team would know or check online. I would also mention to the council about large amounts of food as may be a public health issue if this food is later sold and the premises aren't certified. It could of course be that the people are cooking for members of own family etc, but that'd still be a noise nuisance at that hour. Definitely not a normal part of living in a flat.

KarmaStar Sun 21-Jan-18 19:54:20

Definitely sounds like a business being run OP,must be awful for you 🌼🌼

KnobZombie7 Sun 21-Jan-18 19:56:06

Thank you

Glad to have some virtual MN support to encourage me to call their landlord tomorrow.

StargazyDrifter Sun 21-Jan-18 19:57:20

BTW if they are cooking for a shelter, they still need all the appropriate certifications for their flat (hygiene, how they store food etc) from the council. Just because something is a charitable act doesn't mean it can fall foul of public health standards and in fact they could be putting people at risk. It's also a bit of a leap to assume that, though a kind hearted leap. I'd also say that there may be some risk of those two residents being exploited somehow, given the limited conditions and industrial amounts of cooking? Something isn't right and the council should look into it.

KnobZombie7 Sun 21-Jan-18 19:57:44

Well, I'm off home tomorrow, it's my DM's flat but she should be out in 6 months. Still think it worth complaining to LL though as six months is a long time under these circumstances.

KnobZombie7 Sun 21-Jan-18 19:59:57


I know, I've no idea why my mum assumed that was what they were doing!

I doubt it, they don't seem charitable. Certainly not when I spoke to them earlier and politely asked them to stop cooking at half four in the morning!

MeadowHay Sun 21-Jan-18 20:00:31

Agree with everyone else, report to their landlord and council's environmental health/noise nuisance team. Also keep a diary of whenever you hear the noises in the night, what they sound like etc - if the council investigate properly they will ask you to do this. It's not acceptable and your neighbours are very selfish. I've lived in flats ever since I moved out of my parents' about 5 years ago and never had this and would complain if I had. Noise in the daytime is generally unavoidable with people living in flats especially old converted buildings with bad insulation and people in flats do need to be tolerant of each other but in the middle of the night/very early in the morning that's not on at all.

DingDongDenny Sun 21-Jan-18 20:00:37

Stargazy is right. I used to work for a charity which involved catering for people - serving lunch at support groups. Everyone involved in the food preparation had to go on training and get a food preparation certificate and the kitchen we used had to comply with standards.

ShirleyPhallus Sun 21-Jan-18 20:00:52

My neighbours are similar to this. They are from certain faith that apparently claps / makes noises while doing prayers. As a result, there is often a loud banging noise for a long time. They also cook spicy / strong smelling food at all hours and often have many many people in the flat.

Until it starts sounding dangerous or overly crowded all the time I just take it as part of living in a flat

UpABitLate Sun 21-Jan-18 20:02:04

My friend's mum would get up about that time and start cooking, it was just a thing she did.

It's unreasonable time so agree to complain to landlord.

Tapandgo Sun 21-Jan-18 20:02:24

Bet they are running a business. Report

KnobZombie7 Sun 21-Jan-18 20:04:28

Also, the man has all day to cook. He doesn't go out much, rarely leaves the property (well, not in the 8 days we've been here) so he could cook at a reasonable hour, yet chooses not to.

StargazyDrifter Sun 21-Jan-18 20:04:44

Your mum sounds too lovely for her own good! My in laws are the same and can be a bit of a menace without intending any trouble.

Ok so here's another well intentioned leap from an internet stranger... I'd be a little tempted to check who the LL is first via the Land Registry. You can do a search on the property to see who the freeholder is (good chance they'd be the LL). If the freeholder is a restaurant co there may not be any point complaining to them as there'd be a vested interest, and the council would be better. But as I said that's also a big leap. The search costs maybe £6-12... I can't remember exactly.

KnobZombie7 Sun 21-Jan-18 20:09:49

Great advice. Will find out who their landlord is. Many thanks.
And thank you to all who've replied. I'm showing my mum your replies -she's now saying they might be cooking for poorer family members or the church. I don't think she's that bothered but I am!

StargazyDrifter Sun 21-Jan-18 20:11:54

Make sure you use the official govt portal and don't get stung for extra fees. It's very quick, takes about 10 minutes online. Good luck with it!

KnobZombie7 Sun 21-Jan-18 20:13:18

Thank you. It will be my lunch break task tomorrow!

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