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The cost of noisy neighbours

Last week we heard how Ms Fouladi was awarded over £100,000 for putting up with the noise from her upstairs neighbours especially from the children playing since 2010 when the family moved in.

The argument by the family that they were simply living a normal domestic life and that Ms Fouladi was being hypersensitive was rejected by the judge.

It can be difficult to successfully bring a claim against your neighbour for noises arising from normal day to day living activities.

But in Ms Fouladi’s favour, was the fact that her neighbours, in contravention of the lease, had failed to install carpets or to have taken any steps to mitigate the noise (such as sound installation). In addition the local authority had visited and recorded excessive and disbursing noise from the neighbours.

Mr Fouladi has also brought a claim against the freeholder of the block, the landlord of both her flat and that above her but was unsuccessful. There is a wealth of cases dealing with bringing claims against a third party for someone else’s nuisance (usually the landlord for the tenant’s) but that is another subject for another day.

Claims for noise nuisance can be brought in tort against the actual perpetrator, and/or if it is a statutory nuisance action can be taken by a local authority. You can also, as Ms Fouladi, did in her case show that the neighbours had breached the covenants in their lease (by causing a nuisance and failing to have carpets and/or sound installation) and her lease (by interfering her right of quiet enjoyment).

If you find yourself at the receiving end of excessive and disturbing noise then you should:

  • Keep a diary of the incidents
  • Complain to the local authority
  • Complain to the neighbour and landlord (if any)

As Ms Fouladi has demonstrated, there is recourse, and you can be appropriately compensated and do not always have to just put up with noisy neighbours.