Neighbours - I can't take it anymore

So I had this friendly young lady living next door. We didn’t meet much but we could get along pretty well. One day I see a note on my door. In English. In a very polite way, someone was asking me to please stop making noises from 10PM to 7AM or something like that.

The first person I thought of was my neighbour upstairs. He’s been hearing noises for years, like low frequency weird noises, and has come a few times to my place, a bit out of his mind some of them. One time I was back in my country and he and a doorman woke up my then gf in the middle of the night for inspecting the house for the source of noises. My gf was like wtf is going on. No noises in my house where detected by them, and the guy left the place swearing he could hear something from his place. However, it is true that I may have sometimes made some noise at my place, mainly playing music (not too late) or movies (a bit more late), or washing clothes (normal times for that).

Back to the note. I suspected it wasn’t him, because of the good English grammar, and decided to check with my lady neighbour. I also hear noises on a regular basis, mostly discussions and shouting from the family living in the floor below. They are basically nuts, or he is. One time we almost called the police because it seemed like he was about to kill her: she was crying in the balcony and he was shouting all mad from inside the house and beating the door or something. Lovely scene. Also, there are other noises I will detail later.

So I talked to the young lady and yeah, we both identified the same noises (none produced by us):

  • the said shouting
  • furniture moving
  • someone using a hammer
  • their children running and screaming
  • something like an old fashion spring loaded door that needs oil and then snapping back
  • something like if someone were chopping something on a cutting board
  • cabinet door being closed by a rude moron
  • things like dice and marbles falling or being rolled on the floor
  • others

All of these are transmitted through the walls in all directions, so sometimes it’s really hard to identify the location of the source of the sound, since pillars and walls transmit and project the sounds.

So the lady never dared to talk to this family directly because she was scared of the man but tried talking to landlord (reportedly a vicious asshole) and the security guards, all with no result. They told her to call the police.

The noise level kept growing and unfortunately one day she decided to leave. Landlord, a stingy crazy woman, tried to cheat her with the deposit and even get more money from her. It’s incredible the level of crappiness of these people.

Then a family with one kid moved in.

Fast forward to last night. I was trying to sleep and realized that I kept waking up because of voices and something rolling or similar (hard things being moved around on a hard / wooden surface?).

I lost it. For the second or third time in my life I started to hit the ground with my sleepers, as hard as I could. I’m sure that the guy living above me could also hear it (which may complicate the situation, that’s why I talked about him earlier).

After having done this two or three times, I decided to wear some clothes and go downstairs to verify that it was the bunch of cunts living in the floor below me. But… I found out that the voices and other noises were coming from the family living next to me! the new tenants!

I rang the door. One time. They went quiet for a while. Then they resume the talking, a bit more quieter. I rang again and wait. Nothing. After 5-7 minutes waiting there I went to sleep. Now I’m not sure if I heard more noises and how loud they were.

So this is the situation. If I want to keep sane I really need a solution to this: a bunch of low class people living downstairs, who have been here for let’s say 7 years. A family next door with a father who seems to gamble or play some shit even at 3-4 AM like last night. A guy upstairs who seems to be very sensitive to noises, borderline nutter, but who might have produced some of the noises like moving furniture or hammering, but I’m not 100% sure that those were him.

The couple living downstairs is older than me, the family next door is younger. I would try to avoid confronting anybody as much as possible since I’m the different one (a foreigner) and people here would most likely side by the locals and I have my own problems to deal with and don’t want to start wars I’m not sure I can win. Also I would be complaining about TWO different families so I would be the guy with the problem… despite a neighbour had to move out for the same reason.

Possible solutions I have thought of:

  • talk to their landlords (probably useless)
  • talk to my landlord (same. plus probably she will want me out to raise the rent)
  • counter attack with music. I can lay speakers and play some noise/music
  • variant to the previous: play Omi Tofu chants
  • release some substance in their proximity that attracts insects or smells bad
  • try to fuck with their minds making them believe there are ghosts or some shit of the kind

I’m increasingly desperate.

Move.

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Seconding the “move” advice. Not what you want to hear most likely, but this is a battle you cannot win because you care and they don’t.

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I’d say earplugs or move. I know the second is a big hassle but I feel you’d be fighting a losing battle, given your description of the situation.

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Agree, start looking for a new place.

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I like living here, I have great views, all my stuff is here (some of which is difficult to move), and this is the place where I’ve lived all this time in TW and I consider it my home. The building is not too bad, much better than others around, and I can park my (several) vehicles. The rent and what I get for it is hard to beat.

I’m hoping I can do something instead of moving out.

Other ideas: talk to the other neighbour in this floor, who lives next to the new family. If she and her boyfriend (who sometimes spends the night here and who is big, like much bigger than me) are annoyed by the same, it would be a good idea to go all of us to talk to them. Also the neighbour above me should be aware of some of this noises, and he’s been bolder than me about this type of complaints. My flat and the next door’s were originally just one flat, so he should be living above them too.

Today the weather is pretty decent and I woke up late and haven’t done shit because I hardly got any sleep. This is not really sustainable.

Talking to people who might be sympathetic and using calm and reason to force change for the greater good is worthwhile. I don’t know the players or the culture, but if you go in just looking for a peaceful living environment for everyone and no stress for anyone you might get lucky.

Barring that, I’d try music. It has always worked well for me, because I like heavy metal and my djembe is ridiculously loud.

As others have said, moving is a pretty safe option.

Have you talked to your landlord?

Get the lizhang on board. If he can’t solve the issue, he will talk with the landlord with authority and cancel their contract.

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This bullshit “just move” suggestion really scrapes my scrotum. It’s the go-to solution every time someone complains about their neighbors.
We don’t all live with a backpack in a bachelor’s one-room apartment.
I’ve been living in the same place for twenty years. I like it here, but it can get seriously noisy sometimes. I have three bedrooms that are packed to the ceiling with accumulated shit. Most of it, admittedly, garbage. My wife is a hoarder.
For me to “just move” would take a month of packing and cost me a fortune. Not to mention having to deal with finding a new place and all the crap that goes along with that.
OP, I don’t have any suggestion about how to deal with your situation, but I empathize.
And fuck “just move” if you’re relatively happy with where you are.

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Play dirty and make them move instead.

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So do I. Problem with that approach is that I would end up winding up the guy above. And he would be right to be upset. Thast’s why I suggested using the speakers directly against the floor, but the building’s structure would probably still transmit the vibrations in all directions.

a great way to avoid this, i have found, is to just move more often

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agreed, but if you’ve tried the talking to people first and that didn’t work, music remains a pre-move option. it doesn’t even have to be egregious, in my experience

Yeah, thanks for getting it. I however live in a backpacker’s place, although it’s not just a bedroom. I also have a living room, a toilet and a balcony and my place is much much better than other’s I’ve seen for similar and higher prices.

No. Do not scream, make noise or slam shoes/doors. Sorry, we are foreigners, we cannot enjoy the luxury of a tantrum. The tables immediately turn against us and it will become an all against the foreigner. He will lose his apartment and get sued in the process.

Play the victim. Play it like a fiddle. Get the lizhang on your side or at least your landlord. Keep the white face as far as you can. In the words of Ken Watanabe: let them fight.

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Yeah, but I have to be cautious. I have the same complain about not one but two different families. “Logic” would say that it’s my problem, that I’m too sensitive to noise or crazy or something. However, the said young lady gave up much earlier than me for the same noises. Also I want to avoid being the conflictive foreigner if you know what I mean.

is playing music a bit louder than usual always a tantrum?

in that case, won’t you have to either stop caring about it, or move?

For me, it is easier to stop caring if i have the option to turn up the volume on that cannibal corpse song that i usually wouldn’t disturb my neighbours with. I had a neighbour in Thailand whose daughter’s boyfriend liked to park on our street and show off his car stereo. This stopped once I started going out to jam on my drum every time!

One possible solution is to fight one battle at a time. For example, I can try to get the other neighbour in my floor talk to the new family, with me, and say that it’s not OK to make noise so late in the night. Then, once the simplest of the problems is solved, I can try to get help from the young lady for complaining about the family downstairs, since she had to move out because of them. Actually she has already offered her help for dealing with this other times, it’s just that we never talked about the specifics.

Separating these two issues would help me with the problem of me coming across as picky/sensitive/crazy.

It depends. One thing is to talk politely to someone and invite him for a tea, and another thing is to punch them in the face. The latter is what they really deserve though.

leadership

peaceful, calm, understanding

just don’t get angry and punch people in the face, and you might be able to achieve something :slight_smile:

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