Living with Bad Neighbors

As an apartment dweller and then a condominium owner I have lived with neighbors cheek by jowl for over 25 years. I have had my share of bad neighbors. I have also been a bad neighbor.

One very important factor in neighbor relations is, who has the power? Power is often a deciding factor in how problems are resolved. Do you rent a condominium, and is your problem neighbor an owner? If so, they have the power, because they vote in the association. That means you are better off trying to deal with them directly unless the problem is such that it falls into the realm of building code violation or city ordinance violation. In that case you can appeal to governmental authorities for help.

For example, if the problem is that your neighbor is a prostitute, call the police every time they bring a client home. They will have to either move, do business elsewhere, or make a deal with you in order to continue to make their living at home.

Strategies for getting along with bad neighbors are:

  • Diplomacy and compromise
  • Confrontation
  • Authorities
  • Retribution

Diplomacy and Compromise

Diplomacy and compromise are useful when both parties are not completely unreasonable. To determine this, one must be objective enough about the situation to be able to judge oneself. A little introspection is good. Are they the problem, or are you? Answer that question before you begin to address the problem. If you are part of the problem, go into the negotiation prepared to change. If you are the problem, there is no need to involve an innocent party.

The currency of diplomacy is communication and negotiation. If you have a problem with your neighbor, you owe it to yourself and your neighbor to communicate that problem. Don't sit in your place and stew, allowing your anger to fester. Mention it to your neighbor and see what they say. Then you have a place to start your negotiations.

Diplomacy in this case is the art of making a deal. For example, if your neighbor plays loud music all the time, you can negotiate volume, time of day, and choice of music. You can mention that you have a right to the enjoyment of your home and that their activity is impeding this right. Tread lightly to keep the door open for compromise. Perhaps there are city ordinances that pertain to your neighbor's behavior. You might mention politely that you are considering contacting the authorities about this behavior to determine if it is lawful, but save that as a last resort.

Try to build a win-win situation by enlisting the aid of your neighbor. In this way you may be able to build a good neighbor out of a bad neighbor.

Confrontation

Confrontation should only be used when all diplomatic efforts have failed. Perhaps you are a Navy Seal and always carry a sidearm. Then you are not likely to be afraid, and you can debunk empty retaliatory threats in short order. Your neighbor will learn they should be afraid of you.

Your neighbor, however, may do more than threaten. If you have a family, you do not want the matter to become physical.

Confrontation does not have to be physical. If you are a ninety-pound poet, you can write the person a blistering note. You can send them a confrontational email and cc: the condo association or your common landlord. And you can do all this while assiduously avoiding them in the hall.

Before you use confrontation, you should be absolutely sure you are right. I once wrote my upstairs neighbor an angry note for pounding on his floor (our ceiling) to tell my family to quiet down. I was reacting because my family said this scared them. It turned out that my wife and children were playing soccer in the condo and pictures were falling off my neighbor's walls. It was an embarrassing moment for moi, let me tell you.

As a tool of diplomacy, confrontation can be useful to indicate that since your neighbor is not agreeing to be reasonable, you are prepared to take the issue to another level.

Retribution

Retribution should be avoided because it is usually unproductive and tends to work both ways. If you take revenge upon your neighbor, your neighbor will likely feel empowered to take revenge upon you and yours. To avoid negative consequences, the retribution must be either completely secret or very public. If you have wide support among your other neighbors and the retribution is taken publicly with your offending neighbor present, the bad neighbor, confronted with universal opposition, may be convinced to rethink their position.

Caution: once retribution is taken its effects are very difficult if not impossible to reverse: another reason that retribution is to be avoided whenever possible.

Authorities

Know your rights. Most cities and towns have ordinances against bad behavior and officials and bureaucrats just itching to enforce them. The general gist of the rules is that everyone has a right to the enjoyment of their home without interference from anyone else, unless said enjoyment interferes with someone else's enjoyment of their home. Your neighbor has a right to play misogynist rap music - up to a certain volume and ending at a certain time of night. You have a right not to hear what your neighbor calls music - up to a point.

The downside of using authorities to settle neighbor disputes is that when they decide the issue, you must live with their decision or challenge it through the bureacracy or in court. It is usually much better to work out a deal with your neighbor yourself if their behavior is not patently illegal.

However, if after a little research you find that your neighbor's behavior is clearly outside the law, call in the authorities every time the behavior occurs. Do not show mercy, because you want the authorities to take your complaint seriously. If you are not consistent it sends the message that sometimes the behavior is okay and sometimes it's not. You want to send the consistent message that the behavior is never okay.


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Comments 48 comments

bevy400 profile image

bevy400 7 years ago from scarborough

Good hub....I had bad neighbours for three yrs and they made mine and my daughters life hell.They were beyond reasoning with and the police had to be involved many times,we have since moved as my health was very badly affecetd as was my daughters confidence.Bad neighbours are often bad in every aspect of their lives and standing up to them is hard but they must not be allowed to continue.Keep up the good work


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 7 years ago from United States Author

Glad you escaped, Bevy. I have been very lucky, and I wish you good luck with all your neighbors in the future.


Bruce Elkin profile image

Bruce Elkin 7 years ago from Victoria, BC Canada

Hi Tom, I live in an apt with hardwood floors, and recently the woman upstairs has ensconced her daughter and 11 month old grandaughter in her apt for 4 months. The sound of the 25 pound baby galumphing around on the floor, is like a heavy footed troll up there, banging on the drum that is my apt.

I was PO, until I met the baby. The woman was smart and invited me for dinner to get to know her daughter and little Maia (same name as my own grown daughter, ahh!) -- and we hit it off. She liked me!

Now when I hear her thumping and clumping around up there, I think ah, that's no troll out to make my life miserable, that's cute little Maia exploring her environment, and building her mastery -- and the sound fades into the background.

Loved your hub!


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 7 years ago from United States Author

A little communication makes a world of difference, doesn't it?

Thank you, Bruce!


The Real Tomato profile image

The Real Tomato 7 years ago

It is difficult to be polite when you are angry. You gave many good things to concider before addressing the "bad" neighbor issue. Spoken from the voice of experience and laced with wisdom.

Hey, did you notice the Amazon add for a book titled Our Savage Neighbors? Cracked me up.


goldentoad profile image

goldentoad 7 years ago from Free and running....

I had some loud ass neighbors when I first moved into my place but I couldn't say shit because we do nothing but yell at the kids and each other, so I guess we had a mutual understanding, of sorts.


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 7 years ago from United States Author

Thanks Real Tomato, sometimes the ads the robots choose are pretty hilarious. 

Yes, Goldentoad, peaceful coexistance works, too!  ha


fishskinfreak2008 profile image

fishskinfreak2008 7 years ago from Fremont CA

Very useful advice


foxility profile image

foxility 7 years ago

I had plenty of bad neighbors. If your neighbors are asses there's really nothing you can do. Great article.


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 7 years ago from United States Author

Thanks, Foxility. Ya, the bottom line kinda is you gotta either live with 'em or move. Sometimes, tho, you can make them move. :-)


The Hell of Hardwood 6 years ago

We are all condo owners, and our upstairs neighbors have hardwood floors. They also use their washing machine and dryer after 10pm, oftentimes finishing at around 3am.

I cannot believe they don't realize how loud this is in their own condo, let alone how loud it may be to their neighbors. I am dumbfounded at peoples' complete obliviousness.

Now I get to go up and tape a friendly little note to their door telling them to knock it off. The will for a week, and then it will start up again...


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 6 years ago from United States Author

Sounds awful. My father-in-law actually bought his upstairs neighbor wall-to-wall carpet because he couldn't stand the noise.

First, you must make it clear to your neighbor how you feel about their noise. Perhaps you can invite one of them down to hear first hand how their noise sounds in your house. Let them come up with a proposal for a compromise in their behavior. If they are not inclined to make the situation better, make it clear that you have a legal right to the peaceful enjoyment of your home and that you consider their noise a nuisance. If, after you know they know how you feel, they still do not modify their behavior, you have no choice but to contact an authority such as your condo board of trustees or the police.


Natalie  6 years ago

Hi Tom

My husband & I live in a condo that he purchased 10 years ago. For several years everything was great. About 3 years ago, a mentally damaged man moved in 2 floors above us & has made it a living hell for not just us but everyone else in the building. I say "mentally damaged" because about 10 years ago he was involved in a drunk driving accident of his own doing which left him mentally incapable of making wise decisions for himself. Combine his mental issues with the fact that he is a raging alcoholic & drug abuser, and you have the makings for a horrible neighbor. I know for a fact that he sells drugs which I will explain in a bit. Two years ago I walked outside to find a pool of blood in front of my doorstep & it turned out that one of his "friends" got mad at him at his doorstep & stabbed him. Last summer I walked out to find a pool of vomit on my doorstep. He had "partied" too much, leaned over the railing & puked the night before. A couple of months after that I walked out to find a huge wine bottle that had been thrown over the railing that had shattered on the ground. I own two dogs that I feared would cut their paws. Myself & my neighbors have called the police on him numerous times with no solution. We've spoken & complained to HOA & they say that there is nothing that they can do except fine him which they do at $25 a pop. This guy is a trust fund baby whose mother bought him this condo because he kept getting evicted from his apartments. Three weeks ago, he came down to our place at 5 in the morning, banging on our door, asking us to call the cops because somebody was in his place that wouldn't leave. We called the cops. They showed up (4 of them) and laughed as they compared stories about "One when I got called out, he did ..." & they all had a big laugh. They went upstairs & the unwanted guest admitted to them that he was there "to buy weed & he tried to kick me out". The cops again laughed, did nothing, & made the guy leave. We again complained to our HOA and asked them to contact his mother & explain the situation. They replied (in an email) "are you sure you prepared for the consequences?". We asked what they meant by that & they replied that when other homeowners had taken that approach that their property had been damaged. We said that we didn't care. Two days ago, after working til midnight, I got home hearing him & some stranger discussing the arrival of a "shipment" & how "it should be here soon & I'll call you when it comes in". The guy left and I waited to hear a car crank up, didn't,& assumed he was driving. The next morning, my husband's car window had been smashed and items had been stolen from his car. I feel confident that this scumbag is responsible for the theft although I have no proof. I now fear for my safety and he has driven our property values down. The lady that lives in between us & this neighbor has her unit on the market and has moved our because of this creep. She has told us she is giving it until tge end of Dec to sell & then she will stop paying the bank--ie it will go into foreclosure which hurts us even more. I don't know what to do. Do I have any legal options or am I just screwed?

Please help.


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 6 years ago from United States Author

I am not a lawyer. You need a lawyer.

If your condo has a board, then you should address this through them because it is their responsibility to see that nuisances are taken care of. You may be able to force them to impose heavy fines on your bad neighbor. I do not know how it is in your state, but if an owner fails to comply with rulings of the condo board made within the law, the condo board can attach liens to that owners property. If the liens amount to enough, the offending owner's mortgage provider may become nervous enough to call their loan.

I don't know if you will find my advice helpful, but one thing is certain. You need a good real estate lawyer NOW.


sunchild28 profile image

sunchild28 5 years ago from Nigeria

Bad neighbors can influence our lifestyle negatively is care is not taken.


Sandra 5 years ago

HELP HELP HELP....I have a neighbour who houses 3 big dogs, these dogs go out and do their business in the back yard, and the neighbour does not clean up after these dogs, I was not able to use my back yard due to the smell right next to me, so i decided to call the City By law, they made sevral visits talk to the parties involve and as soon as they were gone, that was the end of it, no clean up, finaly i kept calling the city they returned for the one millionth time, they cleaned it up and left it next to my back yard entrance gate, called the city again, and their final answer was, there is nothing they can do because its been contained, there goes summer and i was not able to use my back yard, does any one have a solution for me, what can i do, since the CITY has failed me, and is allowing them to continue living this way with other neighbours around them.


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 5 years ago from United States Author

What a nightmare! I am assuming here that you share the back yard with this neighbor? If so, it may be difficult to change the situation. If the neighbor has as much right as you to the yard, it would be difficult legally to keep the dogs out of it. If the yard is strictly yours, however, his dogs are trespassing on your property. If your town has leash laws and they are in your yard without a leash, perhaps you could get the town to pick up these 'stray' dogs and take them to the pound. Perhaps a trip to the pound to rescue the dogs will inconvenience the neighbor enough to stop letting their dogs run free.

If not, an expensive but effective solution might be to put up a fence that the dogs are incapable of crossing and lock up the gate. It is said that 'good fences make good neighbors."


Sandra 5 years ago

Tom I would like to thank you from the bottom of my heart for responding, no we do not share back yard, there is s fence between us both, but as you know the smell is the problem here, its just a bad situation that i have no clue how to deal with it, tried talking to them, but that made it worst, in your experience is there another avenue I can try....Thank you.


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 5 years ago from United States Author

Your neighbor has a right to enjoy their property any way they like - until it demonstrably affects your enjoyment of your property. You might speak to an attorney. You might have a legal case against your neighbor for depriving you of the enjoyment of your property. Perhaps there is a health or environmental issue. An attorney would know or would more easily be able to find out .

In my state, Massachusetts, we have something called lawyer referral run by the bar association. You can have an initial consultation with a qualified attorney for very short money. Perhaps they have a program like that where you are?


Timmy 5 years ago

I really hate my upstairs neighbors for many reasons. They play loud music and bang on the floor constantly. I'm a stay at home Mom and these brats are home all day long banging on the floor. I believe the paper thin walls are contributing to the noise level, but the brat I call Skippy, shows his displeasure with any small noise(toliet flushing or the AC) by banging loudly on the floor and/or turning up the already loud t.v.. I believe he thinks he's establishing dominance by running around banging. I'm the type of person who won't put up with these antics, and I actually called the cops(once) and the leasing office, Mr. Alpha male didn't even answer the door, and waited until the police left to bang and stamp and yell like a fool...

I've been documenting all the noise, and I'm ready to file a noise complaint...


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 5 years ago from United States Author

I am sorry that you are going through this. It is always a mystery to me why one human will not respect another's peaceful home life. But it seems you are proceeding in the right direction. I hope very much that your efforts improve your situation soon.


Nervous and sick 5 years ago

We lived in the same place for 20yrs and recently moved. Our neighbor who is a very nice older man has a trailer in his back yard where a girl and her child live and sometimes the child's father is there. I don't know if the guy I see there is the son of the older gentleman but he looks like a gang member and plays loud rap music (seems like it's the same cd over and over) at times when he's there. It wouldn't be so bad if it was inside but he has the radio on the outside of the trailer and when his friends (who also seem to be gangsters) are over, they have to yell to hear each other over the music. It's not done on an everyday basis but it's really annoying.


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 5 years ago from United States Author

One has to pick one's battles. Yet you could ask them not to play the music outside, or to play it more quietly. If you approach them humbly and without fear perhaps they will listen. The first step should be communication.


Trying To Deal 4 years ago

I've lived in the this really well maintained reasonably priced apartment complex for over 7 months now. Everything was quiet and beautiful until this young man moved in next door about a month after me.

I assume that he's a part of some rap group and his group uses his apartment as some makeshift studio. I hear double takes, sporadic beats, and often the same song played over constantly. I even heard a couple of them rapping loudly when their window was open. It isn't the music, but the bass in it. I can hear it all the way through the living room, a closet, my room, way into my bathroom...and sometimes through the floor. This goes on from early morning through midnight.

I have talked to them politely about it and they agreed to turn it down when I ask. However, they turn around and do it again. So, I began reporting it to the apartment manager and she began issuing citations because we do have policies on excessive noise. They literally have months worth of citations. Yet, I think they just throw them in the trash.

I've tried to rearrange my furniture, drown them out, meditate, not be there during certain times, talk to them nicely, ignore them, just about everything! These are boys who look no more than 19 or 20, so I probably shouldn't expect much. But, I shouldn't dread coming home from work.


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 4 years ago from United States Author

Your housing management has been cooperative but to no avail. You have a right to the peaceful enjoyment of your home. This right probably has some kind of legal backing.

First, get a history (in writing) of the citations issued by your apartment manager. An email will suffice if you print it out. Next, try to network with other neighbors who may be sympathetic to your complaint. See if they will issue you a statement (on paper or via email) that expresses a negative opinion of the noise. Begin now to document by date and time all instances of your neighbor disturbing them with their noise. Share your actions with those who are creating the nuisance. Make clear that you will pursue every legal avenue to ensure that you can enjoy your home in peace, because it is your right to do so.

First, take all these documents to the police and see if they will take action.

If the police are disinclined to get involved or their action does not solve the problem, call city (or town) hall and find out what office deals with noise complaints. Contact them daily until they take action.

If you find that no official will defend your right to the peaceful enjoyment of your home from this nuisance, your only remaining alternative will be to consult with an attorney. I wish you good luck.


Bella 4 years ago

we used the police and the court and got one family evicted. Some moved out but then they the council just allows new families to move in with little children and the whole rubbish starts again. The community does not want us and makes our lifes hell, they tell all bad things to their kids and the kids scream this shit around and still do it after having had police and the court involved. Which means that it is useless, it doesn't work. And what I found out that they have families from criminals and rapist living here which shocked me and I wanted to have the rapist family out. In Amerika you have guns but here is just you have to bow down and act as if it doesn't bother you. I used to play loud music as a form of revenge, but just got another naighbour in. They are simply evil shit people, the evil poor. They are unemployed since ever and live on getting children. They have parties all the time and are outside daily and talk to each other realy stupid and they seem not to be ashamed about their behaviour. This is one part of english culture of the lowest form.

90% here don't work and they have parties, tons of friends. This is a world turned up side down.


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 4 years ago from United States Author

Sounds like more of a neighborhood problem than a neighbor problem to me, Bella. I'd work four jobs and get out of that place or die trying. I wish you the best of luck and hope that people you would like to share a neighborhood with move in so that you have good neighbors at last.


NewsShark 4 years ago

So I just moved into an old apartment. The first week in a washer on bathtub went and leaks throughout the night pissing off the neighbors more than likely. The landlord has a maintenance guy that is on Indian time and it is in the contract to only use him for repairs. The apartment I am in is very squeaky for being carpeted and tiled near the front. It is hard to not to cause a loud noise even if traveling lighty. I've already heard the neighbors complaining about me and discussing it in the hallway. How I shouldn't be here if I act like that, but it's not my fault. The dripping bathtub is still not fixed.


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 4 years ago from United States Author

You should talk to your neighbors and tell them what is going on. As far as the creaking goes, the last tenant must have also caused these same noises. As to the leak, this is clearly not your fault. Perhaps as you speak with them your neighbors will have some insight about how to go about getting the landlord to fix the leak.

I wish you the best of luck, Newsshark. Many times a bad neighbor is really a misunderstood neighbor.


Annie 4 years ago

We have lived in our apartment for two years now and have never had problems with the neighbours until the new couple moved in about a year ago. The couple are very close to our age and after a while started to be friendly. Unfortunately they were the take and take again type of people and showed no shame in taking advantage or respect towards us when we brought some issues up. On a particular night, several weeks ago, when they were being particularly shameless I’d had enough of them and I sent them a text saying that they were being disrespectful to us and rude. I was angry (and maybe I should have waited to calm down) but my text did not have any name calling or foul language, I just said that I’d had enough of their behaviour. They texted back threefold with foul language and other denial. Since then we have had one other interaction where she demanded (very loudly) to know why I thought them disrespectful and so I reminded her that I’d asked them several times to clean up the mess they left behind in washing machine (the apartment building has a shared washer & dryer, and I think it’s only fair that after you are done with it you wipe it clean from any human/animal hair, tissues, paper etc... which might have been left behind. Am I wrong?) I also told her that they shouldn’t be telling their friends who come and visit for the weekend, to use our parking space without asking us first (her reply was that they had asked us once and we said yes, why should they have to ask us again!!). There were a lot more issues like this were we couldn’t see eye to eye on where a line should be drawn, so since then we haven’t talked. Things have not improved since then. I finally talked to the landlord about some things like the washing machine and he has in turn talked to them, and for a bit things were better but after a while it’s back to square one. Two days ago I open my front door and the stench of cat litter was horrific, I had to use a can of airfreshner to dim it down. When I got home the morning after I found a note on my door saying that they are trying to figure out where the smell is coming from. Progress I thought. But the washing machine was yet again filthy so I thought that their note was a good step so I asked again yesterday very nicely for the machine to be cleaned. Today it is still dirty. I would usually shut my mouth and clean it myself as I have done countless times before, but now I feel like this is being done on purpose. I firmly believe in Karma and even though I am no saint, I do try and keep away from retribution so when other people in the building came up to me and asked why the neighbours are giving me evil looks I simply said that we no longer talk for reasons which they shouldn’t get involved in, and they asked no further. But I have found out recently from several other people living in the building, that they have been bad mouthing us with everyone to the point that what I had been trying to avoid has now happened. They have sucked in three other people in this situation to gain allies. Fortunately for us our other neighbours have known us longer and have never had any issues with us so they told them to shove it because there was never any of this crap before they moved in. Things are still very tense and I do not want to live like this, how do you get people like these two to understand and stop acting so selfishly? thanks and apologies for the long post!.


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 4 years ago from United States Author

You are in a tough situation because although their behavior may be inconsiderate and annoying, it is not illegal. You are very fortunate that your landlord is not only sympathetic, but willing to take some action.

I think your best bet is to pick your battles. Doubtless some of your neighbor's annoying behavior is worse than other behaviors. Choose some that you could stand to live with and make up your mind to ignore those. Then look at the rest, one at a time, and pick one or two behaviors that you dislike the most. Concentrate your efforts on curbing the worst behaviors and ignore as much of the rest that you can. In other words, complain less, but louder.

Whenever your troublesome neighbor does something right, praise them, just like you're training a dog. But put up a good act and make it as genuine as you can. One of the most powerful ways to affect bad behavior is to praise or reward good behavior.

As I said, it is a tough one. I wish you luck and I hope that relations between you improve, or the jerks move out. All the best.


Aleks 4 years ago

I have a terrible case of bad neighbors, to the point where a website had to be created. Let me know if anyone has suggestions or comments.

www.krazyneighbors.com


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 4 years ago from United States Author

You know, sometimes things get out of hand and you just have to create a web site. It's true. I know.


susanc01 profile image

susanc01 3 years ago from Kentucky

You know, this neighbor thing is widespread, looks like! Can you check out my hub http://susanc01.hubpages.com/hub/Dealing-with-Nast...

Maybe we could link the two?


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 3 years ago from United States Author

Did we not just do that? :)


susanc01 profile image

susanc01 3 years ago from Kentucky

I was thinking I could link to your hub from the article body, if you wanted to reciprocate. Let me know! :-)


Jane 3 years ago

What would you rather have... a noisy neighbor or a quiet stalker in the flat above mine. he follows you from room to room. Doesn't get out of his bed until he hears me get up and doesn't go to his bed ( room above mine) till I go to mine. Listens and watches my visitors come and go from his window. Walls are terribly thin.He gives me the creeps !


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 3 years ago from United States Author

Susanco, I put a link to your hub in my hub.

Jane, that would really annoy me, and it would annoy me even more if I were a woman. I don't think it would hurt to mention this behavior to the police and your other neighbors. I think the police would be interested, although I don't think your neighbor is doing anything against the law.

Here's one idea on how to deal with him. When your guests leave, accompany them and bring a camera with flash. As you leave the building together, turn around and see if he is watching. If he's there, take a quick photo. Don't bother to focus or anything. The flash is what matters. Afterwards explain to your company in a loud voice that you just took a picture of your building's voyeur.

Another idea, when you hear him shadowing your steps upstairs, if possible sneak back silently into the other room and say, "I'm over here, dummy." Repeat as necessary.

But I really think it would be a good idea to mention this fellow to the police. He obviously has some kind of problem.


flo 2 years ago

worked all our lives to be able to pay off for our home a bungalow. new people renting next door. noise loud late at night, dog barking regularly. teenagers drinking, doors banging, at night, dog left for 9 hours daily in the bungalow.I have spoken nicely to girl, to try to get through to her. I got blig answers, now its got worse. dog much poo all over the gravel back garden,wads of it. cars different ones coming and going regularly late at night. my bedroom is on the drive, so my sleep is disturbed,i am an asthmatic , recovering from cancer I and my friend have visited Taylor Phillips estate agents, to inform them of some of the concerns, now it has got worse. I need to know how to resolve this disturbance etc.


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 2 years ago from United States Author

Sorry to take so long to reply. I had unusually busy holidays.

I am less sure about homeowner's rights in the U.K. than I am in the U.S., but I think it was a good step to visit Taylor-Phillips if they are managing your problem's property. Your first step should be to document everything you find offensive in a journal: date, time and nature of each offense. Second, find out what laws and ordinances might be in your favor and compare them with the list. If your neighbor has any behaviors that are illegal you can call the police.

For the dog, I think that there are effective, non-harmful ways to repel dogs as are revealed by an Internet search.

Last thought - good fences make good neighbors. Actually a wall would work best here. Although it would be expensive, a nice, high, sound absorbing wall on your neighbor's side would greatly reduce your noise problem and a chain link fence around the rest of the property would stop the dog.

I hope your bad neighbor problems are swiftly resolved.


Luisa arrambide 2 years ago

is it legal that my ugly neighbor from upstairs hires prostitutes, should i call the police on him ?


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 2 years ago from United States Author

I don't know of any place where prostitution as you describe in this situation is legal. Often prostitution goes hand in hand with other criminal behavior such as drug dealing and racketeering. Certainly if you are witness to a crime, you would be a good citizen to report it to the police, and because other criminal activity tends to be connected with prostitution, it is probably a good idea for your own safety and security.


Stevo 2 years ago

My neighbours are constantly bringing problems to my door I live quietly but they are always having issues with others then com knocking in floods of tears , I'm a disabled man with a terminal disease I just can't take it but want even less to have to tell them abruptly as this is looking the only option left , I can't move as my home is specially adapted for my needs .


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 2 years ago from United States Author

Stevo, I think you have no choice but to be honest with them. It is your home and you have the right to peacefully enjoy it. I wish you good luck in all your dealings.


Ann 18 months ago

Pls. help. I thought we moved in a dream house but turned out to be a hell house because of the bad neighbor. I had panic attacks and nervous breakdown. Praying is my solitude. But God, anywhere but here. I just cry and always depressed.


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 18 months ago from United States Author

There is not much information to go on here, but if you are threatened you can call the police. Otherwise think about any entity that has the power to help you and do not hesitate to contact them. Are you the only neighbor who has trouble with this neighbor? Find out. Find allies.

I wish you peace and serenity in your home.


moonlake profile image

moonlake 18 months ago from America

My neighbors were not mean people just nosy. One day she ask me what I was going to do with all the milk because I brought home milk and so did my husband. He wanted to know what our son was doing with the other neighbor's tent. The tent was ours. He came in my basement door while I was taking a nap, I forgot to lock it. Luckily I heard him before he got up the stairs. One time he told me it was alright that I was picking princess pine on his land. I took him out there and showed him the stakes and made sure he knew I was on my own land. I know it's worse when living in apartments we did that when we were first married and couldn't wait to move into a house. Great hub.


Tom Rubenoff profile image

Tom Rubenoff 18 months ago from United States Author

Thank you, Moonlake. What nerve that guy had! Just walking into your home. Home is really all about boundaries. We all want our neighbors to keep their personal business in their own space and outside of ours. It's bad enough when you have to put up with noise and cooking smells, but when somebody makes a habit of invading your space with their person or things, one has to wonder, what is going on in their head? Thank you.

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