Tips for speaking to your neighbour about noise

Noise from neighbours is one of the most common neighbourhood complaints.

Sometimes people don’t know they’re causing a problem, so if it’s safe to do so it may be worth speaking to your neighbour directly, before you get anyone else involved.

It’s also a good idea to plan ahead before you go to speak to your neighbour. Here are our top 10 tips for approaching your neighbour:

1. Think about how you would feel if a neighbour was approaching you. For example, don’t take lots of people with you – this may come across as aggressive or threatening.

2. Similarly, approach your neighbour when you are feeling calm so you can keep the discussion light-hearted and friendly. If possible, avoid approaching them when the issue is happening as you are more likely to be angry.

3. Consider when will be a good time for your neighbour to have a chat. For example, don’t go round when you think they may be eating their dinner.

4. Plan what you are going to say.

5. Stick to the facts – what is disturbing you and when. Don’t bring up historical incidents to ‘prove your point.’

6. Let your neighbours know why something is causing you a problem. For example – if you have young children who go to bed at a certain time.

7. Assume goodwill on the part of your neighbour and give them the opportunity to respond positively.

8. Don’t assign blame. This makes it easier for your neighbour to hear without becoming defensive.

9. Don’t issue ultimatums.

10. Listen carefully to your neighbour. Try to see it from their point of view and be prepared to be reasonable. Reassure them you want to resolve the problem and discuss possible solutions.

Once you have spoken to your neighbour, if you need further support to deal with noise, please speak to us as we may be able to help.