Dealing with Noise Complaints

Dealing with Noise Complaints


When you’re a landlord, receiving noise complaints is part of the job. 

Whether it’s dealing with late-night parties or arguing with neighbors, managing noise issues can be quite an effort. But don’t despair – if approached in the right way, resolving tenant disputes related to noise levels can become fairly easy! In this blog post, we’ll cover everything a landlord needs to know about dealing with noise complaints. 

Steps to Take When Faced with a Noise Complaint

Excessive noise within a rental property poses a significant threat to the overall enjoyment and well-being of other tenants. Here are some steps to take when dealing with noise complaints. 

Research thoroughly

When faced with a noise complaint, the significance of thorough research and evaluation cannot be overstated. It serves as the foundational step in determining the validity of the complaint and lays the groundwork for an informed and fair resolution.

Prompt Response 

Time is of the essence when dealing with all tenant complaints, including noise complaints. Acknowledge the issue swiftly to demonstrate your commitment to tenant satisfaction.

In-Person Assessment 

Whenever possible, conduct an in-person assessment of the noise issue. This hands-on approach allows you to witness the problem firsthand, enabling a more informed and effective resolution.

Active Listening and Empathy 

Engage with the complaining tenant empathetically. Actively listen to their concerns, validate their experiences, and assure them that their grievances are being taken seriously.

A landlord writing while on the phone.

Overview of Tenant Options 

Provide the tenant with a clear overview of their options in addressing the noise complaint. This transparency fosters trust and empowers tenants to be actively involved in the resolution process.

Escalating to Law Enforcement if Necessary

In cases where the noise issue persists and becomes a matter of legal concern, be prepared to escalate the matter to law enforcement. Clearly communicate the escalation process to tenants, ensuring a transparent and efficient resolution.

Responding to and Evaluating a Noise Complaint

Number of Complaints Against the Tenant

The quantity of complaints against a tenant is a crucial factor in evaluating noise problems. If multiple tenants or neighbors are consistently raising concerns about the same individual, it adds weight to the validity of the complaints.

A pattern of repeated complaints suggests a recurring issue that warrants thorough investigation and intervention by the landlord.

Personal Verification of Noise by the Landlord

Personal verification by the landlord involves firsthand assessment of the reported noise. This proactive approach allows the landlord to experience the situation, enabling a more accurate understanding of the disturbance.

By personally verifying the noise, landlords can respond appropriately, whether through direct communication with the tenant or implementing necessary measures to address the issue. This can be done via an inspection of the noisemaker’s property.

Frequency of Noise Complaints

The frequency of noise complaints provides insights into the persistence and severity of the problem. A random complaint may indicate isolated incidents, while a high frequency suggests a chronic issue that requires comprehensive resolution. 

A person yelling into a megaphone

Official Documentation and Involvement of Authorities

Official documentation, such as written complaints or reports filed with the authorities, adds a layer of credibility to noise complaints. Involvement of local authorities, if necessary, establishes a formal record of the issue and ensures that legal procedures are followed.

This documentation serves as a valuable resource in cases where escalated actions, such as legal interventions, are required for a resolution.

Distinguish Normal Activities from Excessive Noise

Differentiating between normal activities and excessive noise is essential for a fair and balanced evaluation. Not all sounds can be classified as disruptive, and tenants have the right to engage in everyday activities without undue restrictions.

Landlords should consider the nature of the reported noise, its impact on the living environment, and whether it exceeds reasonable expectations for communal living.

Actions to Take If the Noise Complaint Isn’t Valid

Calming Concerned Residents 

In instances where a noise complaint is deemed invalid, it’s crucial to address the concerns of residents who reported the noise.

Approach the situation with empathy, acknowledging their perspective and the impact the alleged noise may have had on their peace of mind. Reassure them that their concerns are taken seriously, emphasizing the importance of open communication in resolving such matters.

Reiterating Considerate Neighbor Habits 

Take the opportunity to emphasize the significance of considerate neighbor habits. Encourage all tenants to be mindful of their activities and the potential effects on others in the community. Reinforce the values of mutual respect and cooperation in shared living spaces, fostering a sense of community and harmony.

The exterior windows of some apartments.

Explaining Investigation Results and Lack of Evidence

Transparent communication is key when explaining the results of the noise complaint investigation. If the evidence does not support the complaint, share this information with all parties involved.

Clearly outline the steps taken to assess the situation, ensuring that everyone understands the thoroughness of the investigation. Provide reassurance that their concerns have been diligently addressed, even if the outcome suggests no valid basis for the complaint.

Establishing Quiet Hours

Quiet hours are defined periods during which residents are expected to minimize noise to ensure a restful living environment.

For example, during weekdays, quiet hours can commence from 10 P.M. to 7 A.M., allowing for a serene nighttime environment. On weekends, the quiet hours could extend until 9 A.M. to provide a slightly later start to mornings. 

These timeframes are designed to cater to diverse schedules while upholding the need for tranquility. It’s important to also consider possible issues like this when screening for tenants in the first place.

It’s important to note that the establishment of quiet hours does not grant tenants the right to engage in excessive noise during non-quiet hours. While these scheduled periods are particularly sensitive to noise reduction, the expectation of respectful sound levels prevails throughout the day. Tenants are encouraged to adopt considerate behavior at all times to ensure a positive and cooperative community.

Some apartment balconies.

Final Thoughts

Resolving noise complaints necessitates a thorough understanding of the nuances involved—from evaluating the validity of claims to implementing effective solutions. Through research, prompt responses, and transparent communication, you can create an environment where residents can enjoy the comforts of home without undue disruptions.

For personalized and effective property management solutions, reach out to B&R Property Management – where your property’s well-being is our priority. Together, we can create spaces that resonate with the true essence of community living.

Click-to-Call: 702-454-2561