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Re: Noise Problems

Posted by TenantNet on September 14, 1996 at 01:12:05:

In Reply to: Re: Noise Problems posted by Fort Greene on September 13, 1996 at 17:58:06:

: This happened to a friend of mine also, who was harassed
: by his xenophobic neighbors while he was having a party cele-
: brating his move. At 2AM on a Saturday, they pounded on his front
: door and called him racial epithets while he was hosting a party
: in his apartment.

I think you have to look at things in perspective -- from one who
suffers from a smug neighbor who plays his stereo at 2 a.m. Racial
remarks are uncalled for anywhere, but neighbors must realize that
what may seem reasonable to some may be considered out of line by others.
Just because it's a Saturday night does not make a 2 a.m. party all
right. Some people do go to bed at 10 or 11, even on weekends.
Even some noise going on at 8 pm might be unreasonable if it has
been going on all day. And the act of complaining is not (by itself)
harassment. I find too many noisy neighbors are quick to
yell harassment when a neighbor tries to talk to them. It's a convenient
way of denying that they might be in the wrong -- either inadvertently
or just due to inconsideration.

Even though we placed the Music v. Noise article online [and we know
and respect the author], he is not suggesting that noise of any kind is OK
at 2 am and he is not suggesting that affected neighbors not complain to
the noisemakers. You should not think that any complaint is harassment.
Tenants are encouraged to talk to their neighbors about noise prior to
making further complaints.

: My neighbor has definitely harrassed us by the guidelines set
: in the "Music vs. Noise" article, but my landlord has already
: told us that we are in the right,

I don't know your particular situation and you may indeed have a
crazy neighbor. You should consider there may be other things at play.
Some people have ear disorders where certain noises can
exacerbate the medical condition. We try to deal with it, but it's difficult
at 2 a.m., especially after we've asked the noisy neighbor to tone things
down and he's aware of the medical condition.

Also when a landlord says the complaining tenant is crazy, it may be the
complaining tenant may have gotten the landlord mad and he may be retaliating
against the tenant. Some landlords actually encourage noise and some actually
create noise to offend a complaining tenant.

: One more offense by my neighbor will warrant a letter writing campaign
: from me.

Just be sure that you are **absolutely** in the right. She may have a point.
Even if you don't think you're that noisy, the question is how it affects
her, not necessarily your opinion.

: let her know that you have rights to privacy and comfort also, and if she
: comes to your door to complain, that in itself is a form of harassment.

No it's not -- unless accompanied by some act or deed unrelated to the simple
act of complaining. If she knocks on your door, or calls you and asks you to turn
your stereo down, that is not harassment. If she vandalizes you, then you may
have a point.

: I don't know where you are located, but if you live in an urban area like
: I do, tell your neighbor to move out to a log cabin in the Poconos
: if she wants the kind of peace and quiet she is requesting.

Accepting urban noise is relative. Asking a neighbor to be quiet during
late night hours -- even in midtown Manhattan -- is not being unreasonable.

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