View Full Version : Loud Neighbors Advice

08-29-2001, 09:48 AM
Last fall my upstairs neighbor was a professional D.J. who played house music constantly - he'd work nights, come home, party, and start practicing at 8:00 in the morning on his two giant turntables. He had the sexual prowess of 10 men, judging from the constant squeaks and high pitched moans emanating from his partners. It was annoying to live downstairs from him, but he was a nice guy. We had his phone number and could call up to tell him to keep it down, and he would immediately comply.

This spring he was replaced by a young family with a toddler and an infant. We were ecstatic! No more booming house music at all hours, no more screaming sexathons, just nice normal people! Oh, how wrong we were. First of all, for the entire month of April, they moved furniture across the floor, back and forth, back and forth, round and round, round and round, leaving us to scream ineffectually at the ceiling. They still do this from time to time.

Also, their toddler gets up at 6 or 6:30 a.m. each day and runs as hard and fast as he can back and forth across the apartment until he gets tired. He does this throughout the day and evening. It is LOUD and very irritating - this Sunday, hung over from ChiDope, I would have cheerfully tied him to a chair to make him stop running.

My roommate has talked to the upstairs neighbors - she works evenings and especially needs her early a.m. zzzzzzs. She told them that Junior's running sounds very loud in our apartment, especially early in the morning. She asked very politely if they could stop him from running around say, before 8:00 a.m. Could they remove his shoes when he's in the house. Could they think about getting carpeting for the areas where he runs. She also suggested that they maybe confine his running to the top floor of their apartment (the master bedroom suite), especially in the morning.

They apologized for the problem, but there has been no change in the behavior. My roommate followed up with a note one day when it was particularly bad, but still, every single morning, starting at 6 or 6:30, the kid is stomping back and forth across the apartment, wearing shoes, on hardwood floors. We now realize that OF COURSE they don't want him running on the third floor - because that's where THEY are trying to sleep.

They are family friends of the landlord, and we don't want to alienate them or him - we love our apartment and they could make our lives difficult. We are also afraid that the rare times we have people over or turn the music up they will retaliate on us.

So what do we do to stop the running? Give them an idea of when we're gone during the day and it's safe for the kid to run? Knock on their door every single time it bothers us? Call the cops and report a "disturbance"? I was thinking of inviting the woman down to our apartment during a running episode so she can hear how loud it is. I don't think they are horrible people, maybe just clueless. All ideas welcome.

08-29-2001, 10:37 AM
It sounds like your neighbors don't realize just how loud the kid's being to you. A lot of apartment dwellers assume that the walls will block all or most of the sound when they don't.

What I would suggest is that you record the noise and document whenever it happens. Then, take this tape (or whatever) to your neighbors and explain that this is what you hear. If the neighbor blows you off, take it to the landlord and explain this to him. I know it's going to be awkward, but if you have a recording with times and dates, it's not an issue he can ignore, and it's going to shift the awkwardness to him and his friends. I don't live in Chicago, but ask if Junior's noise constitutes a noise-ordinance violation. A few police visits might make Mommy more aware of how noisy little Junior is.

It would not surprise me in the least to learn that they've had problems in the past with other landlords, which is how they ended up here.


08-29-2001, 10:38 AM
Buy the kid some slippers as a Labor Day present. At the very least, it might get the message across to the parents that if you're willing put spend some cash to fix the problem, they might maybe want to do something about it.

08-29-2001, 10:41 AM
One more thing.

If you want to be truly nice about it, you might also want to make up a list of local parks and kid-friendly places so that Junior has a more appropriate place to release his energies.


08-29-2001, 10:41 AM
Well, to be a smart-alec, you could always invite ChiDopers over for a LOUD Dopefest versus that quiet one we're talking about. That'll learn 'em!

On the serious side, I'd say like MsRobyn did, have the mom come down and listen. Keep complaining to them until they get the clue that you're not just b****ing.

08-29-2001, 11:28 AM
Had this exact same problem before. Fortunatly the kid was being passed between Daddy and Mommy on alternate weeks/weekends so it was just about bearable.

Have you considered hobbling the little blighter when no one is looking ?

08-29-2001, 11:38 AM
Originally posted by Damhna
Have you considered hobbling the little blighter when no one is looking ?

Ah yes, but then there would be the screaming to contend with.

Thanks for the advice, guys - I think I'm going to have the mom come downstairs and listen to the kid when he's running so she realizes how loud it is to us, and try to set some "Junior has to play quiet now" time periods - before 8:00 a.m., for instance.

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