General Question

guitarhero1983's avatar

How to deal with a tenant from an apartment across the alleyway who plays loud music on a regular basis?

Asked by guitarhero1983 (135points) January 26th, 2009

This guy plays moderately-loud but audible (within my apartment, windows closed) and irritating music (read: 1980’s monster rock on single-track repeat for hours on end, interrupted sporadically with Call of Duty machine gun fire) music every single night. I go to bed at 11, he stays up until 12:30. I’m getting sick of it. I’m not the confrontational type—particularly when it comes to people who live right next to me. I don’t want to be “that guy”—there’s no way for me to politely address him except to yell across the alleyway (about 15–20ft across)—but I want this to end. Any help would be appreciated.

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23 Answers

exitnirvana's avatar

An anonymous note on his door couldn’t hurt, and would at least land you a good entry on

buster's avatar

If you don’t want a personal confrontation about the only option you have short of killing them is calling the cops. Most towns have a noise ordinance around 9–11 oclock. Trust me they will show up and tell them to quiet down. Ive had neighbors call the cops on me for the same thing.

augustlan's avatar

Approach him at a time when he is not playing the music late at night (go during the day or early evening). Ask him politely if he could please turn the volume down late in the evenings, as you are having a hard time sleeping. Be nice and neighborly.

guitarhero1983's avatar

Sorry, I think I failed to mention he is across the alleyway, but in a different apartment building altogether—meaning, I can’t so much go over there and talk to him. The only way would be to yell across the courtyard.

onesecondregrets's avatar

If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em.

Or just dance into his apartment? while his music is playing then stop once it starts to get awkward as he stares at you and be like “No, but seriously..could you take it down a few notches just ‘cause homeboy/girlneeds some least around 11. It’d be greatly appreciated.” He’ll be shell shocked, but get the gist, hopefully laugh, be willing to compromise. Then after verbal communication occurs you can continue to dance right out into your humble abode. Totally non-confrontational!

La_chica_gomela's avatar

I’m with buster – the cops are much more effective than a neighborly shout or knock. Let them sort out which apartment number he lives in.

guitarhero1983's avatar

@La Chica Gomela, or anyone else, for that matter—couldn’t the “offender” retaliate if they find out you called the cops? Or do the cops have anti-retaliatory procedures, effected for that reason?

La_chica_gomela's avatar

How would they find out?
(When my friends have had the cops called on them for noise complaints, they didn’t say “oh it was this person, in case you want to go put some flaming dog poo on their doorstep”) They said, “we’ve been getting complaints – you need to to turn it down, buddy”)

Now, if you scream at him every night and then call the cops, okay, he’ll probably figure it’s you without being told.

Another (and perhaps more effective means, depending on your neighborhood) is to call his apartment building’s manager (usually listed on the website, depends on the building) pretend you live there, and complain to them about his music. Of course this works better if you can go over there, snoop around, and figure out which number he’s in. I’ve heard that in a lot of neigborhoods, cops don’t really care about noise complaints, they have more important things to deal with.

augustlan's avatar

Ah, he’s in a different building. Call the police.

guitarhero1983's avatar

But for just music and video games (I say “just” because I feel bad—but this may be warranted)? Will the officer have to stop by my apartment to get more info?

augustlan's avatar

If it is disturbing your peace, it’s warranted. It’s doubtful that they’d have to get you involved, at least on a first call. If after the offender has been warned it doesn’t stop, they’d probably need a paper trail.

girlofscience's avatar

- Make repeated calls to the police.
– Befriend a police consultant who formerly worked for the police, and have him complain as well.
– Always verify that it is actually your neighbor in the apartment, and not an egg-eating robot. (Otherwise, your call to the police could serve as his alibi as he is committing murder.)
– Make it clear to your police-consultant friend that there is no “catch” that comes along with your friendship so he doesn’t think that you’re in on the murder with your neighbor, or even worse, that the murderer’s your son!

cyndyh's avatar

@girlofscience: Lurve for the Monk reference. :^>

galileogirl's avatar

The good news is that a guy who isn’t smart enough to live among neighbors probably isn’t smart enough to get a new job now that Circuit City is closing down. Since nobody else will pay him to hide in corners avoiding customers, he will probably have to move.

judochop's avatar

Sling shot full of frozen mace balls. That’ll do the trick.

AlfredaPrufrock's avatar

@guitarhero1983, nothing says you’ve really arrived into adulthood like being annoyed by the noise your neighbors make, and taking action on it. The police should have a non-emergency number to dial. Don’t call 911. Most communities have noise control laws, as in if you can hear it 50 feet away, it’s too loud.

If the guy wants to listen to music that loud at that hour, someone invented these lovely things called “headphones.”

girlofscience's avatar

@cyndyh: I’m so glad someone got it!

cyndyh's avatar

@girlofscience: yeah, that stuff was funny. :^>

pekenoe's avatar

If you are not comfortable with any kind of confrontation, is the noise coming in to your apartment through the walls or through the closed window? If it comes through a closed window, then a piece of styrofoam or beadboard insulation 2 inches thick should deaden the sound enough to be bearable. Cut it so it’s a tight fit inside the frame of the window. Makes it dark, but silence is golden.

fireside's avatar

@girlofscience and @cyndyh – Monk was the first thing i thought of when i saw the question

cyndyh's avatar

I thought about the alibi angle, but not beyond that. :^>

mirifique's avatar

Update: I confronted the guy. The police never did anything. I just said out the window, “excuse me? Could you please turn down your music?” He replied, “I’m really sorry about that,” sincerely. I told him thanks. He has since stopped doing that.

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