I am the noisemaker.
November 27, 2006 8:04 AM   Subscribe

Seeing this question and this question about noisemaking in apartments made me think about my situation. I am the noisemaker. Supposedly.

I don't play music loud late, I don't have people over. I don't party loud. I live in my room. I come home late, i take off my shoes, I walk around, maybe sit in my chair and check email, I go to my dresser and grab a shirt, take out my contacts, etc.

But my downstairs neighbor hates me. I live in a group house, which makes it worse. I have a large area rug that covers much of the room (with a non-stick pad). She has earplugs, but these are hardwood floors in a 1902 rowhouse. But I'm gonna get foam for the subwoofer. Done. Will look into rug pads (but aren't those just really thin anyway? What good will it do?) Mass loaded vinyl won't work under a rug (and ripping out hardwood floors in a rental is out of the question).

I mean, part of me hates seeing her cry because she can't sleep (entirely my fault, she tells me) and the other part of me thinks "fuck it" because I'm not doing anything wrong. And if i get into bed and my feet are cold, I'm going to get socks from my dresser. And I shouldn't have to feel guilty because of it.

Since these questions addressed those angry with the noise party, what can the supposed noisemaker do?
posted by anonymous to Home & Garden (35 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

Either away from the crazy psycho lady, or downstairs into her room (assuming I'm interpreting the situation correctly, and you're both in the same shared house). If she was upstairs, she wouldn't have the same issues with the noise from above.
posted by jacquilynne at 8:13 AM on November 27, 2006 [1 favorite]

If you are creating normal levels of noise within a normal schedule (and it sounds like you are), try and find out specifically what it is you do that causes the problem (sounds like just walking around at night is a problem?). If you can ameliorate the situation without adversely affecting your lifestyle, do so out of common decency (it sounds like you can't). If not, tell the delicate snowflake downstairs to take it up with the landlord. Be apologetic, but make sure she realizes that this is a structural situation and not under your control.
posted by Rock Steady at 8:17 AM on November 27, 2006

If this is really the whole story (you don't do much, she has earplugs, and she STILL blames you for lack of sleep) then the problem is clearly hers, and anyone who lived above her would be blamed. And there are few upstairs neighbors as naturally quiet or concerned about this as you.

It was when you mentioned the crying that snapped things into focus. Any rational person looking at your situation would see that there is not much you can do about this-- you can't make the floors thicker or younger. If I were you I would discreetly discuss this with your landlord so that your side is fairly examined: "My downstairs neighbor seems really uncomfortable with the amount of noise coming from my apartment. I don't see how this could be possible, but here are the facts and I'd love to get some ideas from you on whether there is anything I can do about it". That way if your neighbor starts raising complaints, you will already be on the record as being concerned about this problem in a considerate way, and if the landlord takes a peek at your set-up (you can even demonstrate your peak volume level, and then both walk outside together to hear it), s/he may be able to ascertain that you generally aren't doing anything wrong.

Sorry you have to worry about this. After years of apartment living, I unconsciously walk around on the balls of my feet whenever I'm indoors, and other little insecurities as well have crept into my behavior. Hope you can still enjoy yourself at home!
posted by hermitosis at 8:19 AM on November 27, 2006

Take off your shoes at the door if you have hardwood floors. Makes a huge difference -- my roommate upstairs occasionally wakes me up when he wears his shoes into the house, otherwise I barely notice he's home.

If walking across the floor barefoot to get socks is bothering her, then the floors are creaky and no rugs will help you with that. I don't know if there actually is a solution to the creaky floors, although my former landlord used to put screws in the floor at creaky spots so we wouldn't disturb the businesses downstairs. But creaky floors are kind of something everyone has to live with in a 1902 building.
posted by limicoline at 8:20 AM on November 27, 2006

As somebody who's had real noisy neighbors, I say it does sound like you're doing nothing wrong, and that the DS neighbor is too sensitive. However- do you walk on your heels? It's not an evil thing to do, and nobody should be telling you to tiptoe, but heel-walkers do make more noise. I once lived under one, in a building with plywood-drum floors. I moved upstairs as soon as I could.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 8:22 AM on November 27, 2006

Don't walk heavy?

Put the subwoofer way up off the floor and gear down the amount of volume it gets?

I know a lot of heavy walkers. They come to visit at my place and think nothing of the fact that the are walking so heavy that things in my house start to fall off the counters and shelves. We have earthquakes that don't do that. When pointed out that they might be a wee bit heavy on the stompage they are usually surprised. :)

I'm a light walker, for what it's worth, brought on entirely by my overall insistance on living on top floor apartmens. Yes, I have a subwoofer too, and yes, it's off the floor and the volume is turned down to the point that it only peripherally ads to what I am listening to.

My current downstairs neighbor listens to the radio, and the ventilation in our place assures that I hear most of that (even through earplugs this morning - our white nose fan was turned off because my wife is sick), but you know, that means he hears me too when I'm listening to music or there are other activities going on. So, I don't complain. I've lived here nearly six years and its the longest of any place in the past twenty years.

I've taken great care to have all my speakers off the floor and to tread very lightly in my house (although, we have carpet with decent padding, unlike your situation) and to be aware of the time of day when I am listening to music, watching TV, etc.

And you know, some people are just... sensitive to sounds. I can hear low frequency sounds in the house next door when I'm lying in bed, so... I leave a fan on all night when I sleep to drown out the noise. It's the only thing that works. You might suggest that a white noise generator of some sort for your neighbor.
posted by smallerdemon at 8:23 AM on November 27, 2006

I was in the exact same situation as you a few months ago. My neighbor who lived below would go insane over my FOOTSTEPS. I am not a heavy-set person and I do not wear shoes inside the apartment. He complained many times to my landlord and eventually moved (thank goodness).

Frankly, you can only do so much to ease her comfort. If she does not like her accomodations, she should move. You are not doing anything that would be considered beyond generating reasonable noise. In fact, you've probably been more than considerate; there should be no reason for you to spend more money because the building does not have enough sound insulation towards her preference. If she wants less noise, she should move into an apartment with thicker separations or where people travel by floating across the floor.
posted by pinksoftsoap at 8:24 AM on November 27, 2006

I am not a heavy-set person...

*heh* You know, the stompiest walkers that have visited at my place take off their shoes and are skinny people. But they shake the whole place when they walk across the floor. Not saying that's the case with your, but weight isn't relevant when you get that heel going and put all your weight into it unconsciously.

Not saying it's a big deal, though.

I'm the noise sensitive one and after years of moving around and finding a place where there's still plenty of noise, I've definitely just learned to live with "normal" noises. Here's to hoping anonymous' DS neighbor can learn to live with the noise of the world of find somewhere to live alone (or get some damn noise cancelling devices).

(I live at a major transit point now, too, so there's a LOT of noise outside my window these days. I think the higher level of frequent noise of people helped me just get used to it.)
posted by smallerdemon at 8:31 AM on November 27, 2006

tell the delicate snowflake downstairs...

This isn't fair. I'm in the same situation as your downstairs neighbor and it blows. The old guy upstairs goes to bed very early, but starts walking around at 6 - many hours before I have to get up. Despite my loud fan and ambient NYC street noise, he wakes me up frequently with all the creaking and it does want to make you cry after a while. Anything that keeps you awake does. I realize he's doing nothing wrong or preventable however and I have to just wait until he leaves the bedroom. Luckily, he does after a maximum of ten minutes. But you are doing this for hours it seems. It would drive me mad.
All I could suggest is switch rooms with her, or have her get a really good white noise maker. (A $10 fan does the trick for me.)
posted by CunningLinguist at 8:44 AM on November 27, 2006

Ugh, I am supposedly the noisy neighbor also. Well, not me, but the 17 year old foster child who lives with me. (Aside: He's generally no noisier than the typical twenty-five-year-old man who lives in this neighborhood (Castro, San Francisco), but he's a kid and he's black and he has black teenage friends, so there's a lot of anti-teen and racism stuff going on.)

Anyway, this is what I did after receiving complaints last July. A couple of days after the complaints I wrote a letter to everyone in the building explaining that I had a foster child and that I was sorry about the noise and that I would do what I could to address the situation. And I gave everyone my cell phone number and my work schedule. I then took away the Bose speakers and put them in the trunk of my car because Chris can't turn them on without turning them all the way up. (This is presumably not your situation.) Then I did what I could to make Chris as paranoid as I am about the neighbors.

The situation improved, and five out of the eight households thanked me for everything, and said all was fine. Two of the households continued to be total assholes, swearing and yelling at Chris on at least one occasion (rather than speaking to him politely or contacting me). At that point I gave up as to those households, and wrote to the landlord stating that I have taken all steps necessary to be a courteous neighbor, and that the remaining neighbors were being completely unreasonable (I mentioned it because I am sure they've been complaining to him). As we have strong laws against discrimination against children in rental properties, I also let him know that I thought it was a reaction to there being children in the building after decades with no children.
posted by ClaudiaCenter at 8:55 AM on November 27, 2006

I've just mounted my subwoofer in the middle of a brick wall using stone anchors, to the relative delight of both my upstairs and downstairs neighbors.

We have a deal that they inform me when they are away, as well as of their work schedules. I use those times to sate my thirst for the really loud moments.

Really major transgressions on my part are followed by appologies with flowers, and we make it work. Occasionally I do some babysitting for penance.

They both know the value of keeping the landlord (and the police) out of our disputes.

We have had some success with my trying to limit myself to only blasting music that they like. One rather unusual remedy I have been considering is to provide both my neighors with a set of satellite speakers that they could switch on to join me in listening instead of just getting the woomp woomp of the bass.
posted by StickyCarpet at 8:56 AM on November 27, 2006

You're not doing anything wrong. She would blame anyone above her. I would suggest that she live in a top-floor apartment next time. It's a 1902 building! What can you expect.

I would shrug her off as gently as possible and not change your "walking behavior." Sheesh, some people.
posted by agregoli at 8:57 AM on November 27, 2006

The way you walk makes all the difference in the world. Shoes on, shoes off, it doesn't matter; if you are a "heel" person you can shake the whole floor without even noticing. It's all a matter of the type of gait that you have, and I totally agree with everyone above that has said essentially that "heel walkers never realize that they're doing it."

Now that doesn't mean your downstairs isn't also a psycho, as it sounds like in this case. I'm just saying that many people are totally oblivious to the gait they use when they're not consciously thinking about walking or moving (i.e. most of the time.)
posted by Rhomboid at 9:01 AM on November 27, 2006

Yes, who knows if your neighbour's a psycho, but you certainly don't need to be a psycho to get driven to tears by some people just walking around normally in some kinds of houses. I was in the position of your downstairs neighbour, and it was pretty unbearable.

I got much, much more sleep when I stopped wearing earplugs and started wearing earplugs. I guess it might be hard to recommend a specific brand of earplug to your tearful neighbour, but those Howard Leight Max earplugs did save my sanity.
posted by game warden to the events rhino at 9:11 AM on November 27, 2006 [1 favorite]

CunningLinguist, I think you may have illuminated why this person's problem is so bad.

Chances are that the layout of his/her apartment is exactly the same as the downstairs neighbor's. Which means that the poster is not doing the neighbor any favors by "living" in their room.

Poster, this may seem like a wacky solution, and may be impossible. Do you have a living room? What if you made your living room into the bedroom, and turned your bedroom into an office/living space or whatever you currently use the other room for?

It may seem weird to walk into your apartment and immediately be in your room, but many studio apartments have this look and it can be made to seem welcoming and stylish. And that way, everything you do in your room is no longer taking place directly over where someone is tying to sleep! And by upgrading your living space into a specific place instead of just a room you pass through to get to your bedroom, you might find you use it more productively.

This idea could save you both a lot of stress: I often feel relief at knowing that our downstairs neighbor's bedroom is on the opposite side of the building as ours, as shrieking tickle-fights seem to just happen whenever they happen, regardless of what time it is.
posted by hermitosis at 9:12 AM on November 27, 2006

Is there any way to switch rooms with her?

She sounds crazy and overly picky, but perhaps switching rooms, if possible, will get her to shut up and allow you to get socks in the middle of the night.
posted by necessitas at 9:14 AM on November 27, 2006

Sounds to me as though Anonymous is in a shared house rather than an apartment. And if so, then offering to switch rooms with the delicate flower might be the easiest solution.
posted by handee at 9:15 AM on November 27, 2006

Oh. "Group house". I assume this means what I suggest is impossible. And in the process I have exposed myself as a tickle-fighter. *sigh*
posted by hermitosis at 9:15 AM on November 27, 2006

Agree on the heel-walking thing. I used to get complaints from my downstairs neighbors to the point where I was finally tiptoeing around, and that seemed to work. Eventually it devolved into walking on the front ball of my foot when I'm at home with my shoes off. It actually feels pretty good; stretches muscles and tendons I don't use normally in walking, and I can sneak up on the cats now.
posted by Rubber Soul at 9:18 AM on November 27, 2006

Coming from someone with noisy neighbors and wafer-thin walls and floors, I love this old joke:
There was guy who every day came home from a hard day's work, sat down in his favorite chair, took off his heavy shoes and dropped them one after another on the floor. One day his downstairs neighbor asked him not to drop his shoes like that because it wakes her up every night. He agreed, but the very next night, according to his habits, he arrived home, sat in his favorite chair and began to take off his shoes. He dropped the first shoe and then remembered his neighbor's request; feeling guilty he removed the other shoe and set it on the floor quietly. An hour later there was a knock at the door, it was his neighbor. She says, "I can't sleep because I'm waiting for the other shoe to drop."
Once something gets under someone's skin every little thing can be too much. If she hates you there might be nothing you can do. One person in my building, who is not the loudest, is universally disliked. Any noise that she makes is an excuse for everybody else to complain about her. Follow hemitosis's advice if you think this is something she'll bring to your landlord.

And you can put your subwoofer on a timer so it turns itself off during reasonable nighttime hours.
posted by peeedro at 9:52 AM on November 27, 2006

I bet the subwoofer is a big part of the problem. Punks with pipes in their cars make my room shake 100 feet away. Don't under-estimate how the low frequencies can make other things make sound, even - especially - the subwoofering you cant hear. I doubt foam would help much. The lows can really travel, especially if she lying down with an ear to the ground, so to speak.

Nonetheless, if she is unreasonable, then you have my condolences - it sucks to feel like you have to be paranoid about noise and constantly self-monitoring.

Also, maybe ask her if you can spend half an hour in her apartment while a third party walks around in your apartment, so you can get a feel for the problem -- not to disprove her or anything, but on the idea that you might become aware of some things that really do make more noise than you think.
posted by Rumple at 10:02 AM on November 27, 2006

Sometimes certain noises just drive me nuts. They don't even have to be loud - it's just that they're there and I can't get my mind to shut them out. Sorta like dripping water. It's the regularity of the event and that fact that it's happening at all that drives me nuts. Like the idiots having a party across the street last week. They were not overly loud but they're laughing still bothered me to the point I made a noise complaint.

What bothers the lady below you is that you're making noise period. Nothing will make her happy other than complete silence. She'll never happy so don't worry bout it.
posted by DieHipsterDie at 10:23 AM on November 27, 2006

you sound like you're being conscientious, which is nice, and it may be that she's just ill-suited to group living. i would suggest that you check your furniture for wobbles. in old houses, floors aren't even and sometimes the vibrations of normal walking set furniture wobbling which sounds like the thundering herds to the downstairs neighbor. add shims to loose furniture and felt pads to all your furniture, which should help with those noises too.
posted by crush-onastick at 10:38 AM on November 27, 2006

In theory, I was the noisemaker - until the neighbor that my boyfriend and I were 'bothering' moved out. In February of this year, my boyfriend's schedule at work changed and I was home alone from about 7pm until he got home at 1am or later. With this new schedule, we didn't have people over nearly as much as we did before the schedule change. We were a whole lot quieter. I know that I wasn't making that much noise.

He started complaining in July or so about loud bass music coming through the floor of our apartment at all hours of the night. We tried everything - kept the TV's off after 10.00, took our shoes off in the house, avoided playing music at any level, adjusted the TV speakers in the living room, unhooked the computer from the stereo in the bedroom, etc. He kept complaining to the landlord, yelling at my boyfriend for playing Dr. Mario too loud at 7.30pm on a Saturday, waking me up at 11pm to scream at me, calling 911 (??!!?!?!!) up to three times a night for noise complaints. It got so out of hand that the cops coming to the apartment in the middle of the night knew us and felt bad for getting us out of bed night after night.

So this was July and August - our AC unit is on our deck, right above the neighbor's bedroom window. If you stand on our deck in bare feet with the AC running, you can feel an oscillating vibration coming from the unit that (if you're sensitive enough) could possibly feel/sound like faint bass coming from another apartment. I think this was his problem...

Now that I'm done ranting, the point of all this is: Talk to your landlord, ask the neighbor what specifically she hears and when she hears it, do what you can to curb your noise making. But this is apartment living. One cannot live in an apartment building and expect to never hear their neighbors. After talking to the parties involved and doing what you (and possibly your landlord) believe is reasonable, brush it off. There are crazy neighbors out there. The sergeant for cops that came to our building suggested to the guy's face that perhaps the noises were in his head. If it really does get unbearable, you might consider moving, but don't lose sleep about it. :)
posted by youngergirl44 at 11:08 AM on November 27, 2006

In an older building, you're going to hear alot more noise than you will in newer buildings. Aside from taking your shoes off, picking your subwoofer off the floor, checking your furniture for wobbles and padding every inch of walkway in your apartment with rugs and rug pads, you're not going to reduce the noise that much. So that's the first problem.

The second problem is a touchy neighbor. Some people simply have "house thinking" - they think that they shouldn't hear any noise at all whatsoever, simply because they pay rent. Obviously that is NOT the case. You live in an apartment, thus there will always be a LITTLE noise.

So, try the rug thing - not the cheapie flimsy rugs. The thicker, more expensive rugs (target's pretty cheap - and you can get quality rugs there). Get a runner for the hallway and a couple for your bedroom. If your bed squeaks, WD-40 it. Pick your subwoofer off the floor. Take your shoes off when you're in the house. If after all this, she STILL complains - which she probably will - then don't worry about it. Some people are just the type to bitch about free money. That's just how they are - if they're not bitching about something, then they don't know what to do.

(you know, I've seen this work a few times before, so I'll add this: make friends with your neighbor. Seriously. Go down there, apologize for the noise, have a conversation with her. Start being friendly with her. When someone moved in under me, the first thing I did was go down and introduce myself. I warned her that the building was old so I'd try to limit my movements as best I could. She was somewhat bitter about the noise, but once she got to know me, she realized that I wasn't going out of my way to disturb her. I even invited her up to see my place. She saw I was making an effort, and I never heard anything negative out of her again. I'd warn her if I had a few people coming over for dinner, or wanted to watch a loud movie, and she was ok with it. So, FWIW, if all else fails, try the Friendly Neighbor approach - especially if this is a place you'll be living in for a while. Even if the noise still bothers her, she might feel bad about bitching over the noise if you two are friendly with one another.)
posted by damnjezebel at 12:16 PM on November 27, 2006

Agree that she sounds unsuited for group living. When you share walls, you can hear normal household noises made by your neighbors. This is not unreasonable. Talk to your landlord. (I've lived in upstairs apartments, downstairs apartments, and large buildings with neighbors on all sides. I've had crazy neighbors, great neighbors, quiet neighbors, and noisy neighbors.)
posted by desuetude at 12:16 PM on November 27, 2006

i'm in the downstairs of a 1900's building too. our upstairs neighbors are freakishly loud just by walking too. i see where your downstairs neighbor is coming from -- it IS frustrating when you're trying to sleep and your neighbor is walking around on creaky hardwood floors directly above your head. especially when it sounds like they're kicking around bowling balls.

however, i don't get all up in arms about it. it's a part of living in an old house, and it's a part of living in the downstairs. i know you're trying to be sensitive about her feelings, but she should really understand that it's not you, it's the house and the way it is set up.

good luck!
posted by kerning at 12:27 PM on November 27, 2006

When my downstairs neighbors started on me for walking, opening drawers and other, imaginary, noises ("loud banging in the middle of the night!" Huh -- I should be so lucky.) I apologized and explained the situation to them. That didn't work. I suggested they solve their problem with headphones, earplugs, closed windows, a white-noise generator, tapestries or rugs on the walls, Nyquil, psychotherapy, or a sharpened chopstick. That didn't work. I went to my landlord and demanded that he get them to leave me alone. That worked.

I don't understand why a reasonable, conscientious person should have to dance to the tune of a brat. Why is the person complaining about noise automatically ceded the high ground? Yes, people have a right to relative peace and quiet in their homes -- that includes freedom from harassment for simply living in an upstairs apartment.

As far as all this about "heavy walking" -- you guys have got to be kidding. People live in an apartment, they have to change the way they walk? From now on, I'm going to stomp around like godzilla crunching cars underfoot just on principle. It's my apartment; I get to walk however I want. Luckily for me, I don't have to cry to get my way.
posted by Methylviolet at 1:01 PM on November 27, 2006

Make sure the rug is thick, as well as padded. Consider adding a layer of cheap rug between the pad and your existing rug.

Talk to her sympathetically, and try to define some good times for you to play music, as well as some times that she especially needs quiet. She might also beneft from a white noise machine or fan.
posted by theora55 at 1:05 PM on November 27, 2006

you know, i used to live with a guy. our rooms were next to each others in a large, old group house. he was a great guy; one of the most thoughtful, friendly, accomodating and likeable fellows i've ever met. we got along great.

but he was loud. he talked loud, he laughed loud, he played his music loud.. he did everything loud, and he didn't realize it, because to him it was just normal. and every time someone would tell him 'hey, you're being loud' he would quiet down briefly but then it would be back to normal because his default level was just higher than everyone else's.

so, maybe she is oversensitive and not suited to group living, or maybe she's got other shit going on in her life and not being able to sleep is the straw that broke the camel's back. i don't know either of you so i can't say, but it's possible that you're just one of them loud people.
posted by sergeant sandwich at 2:27 PM on November 27, 2006

i know someone who was in a similar situation -- his downstairs neighbor complained endlessly about the noise ("your cat meows when you're gone," "the phone rings" -- what the hell? -- "i can hear you turning over in bed," etc).

the neighbor rearranged his living space so he slept in the room where my friend walked least, and gave him all of these buffer pads and things.

in the end, my friend gave away the cat and moved somewhere else.

if this is a group house, what's the structure? do you have meetings? can someone switch up rooms with her or you?
posted by sdn at 3:10 PM on November 27, 2006

I lived in a fraternity house for a year of my life. Our walls were so thin I could hear my brothers Sunday phone conversation with his mother two rooms away. Everyone suffered from sleep when a few guys wanted to party. Even worse, everyone really suffered when the girls magically showed up and wanted to party when we were already in bed.

Our housemother used to drop a Benadryl just to go to sleep. She complained for a while about the noise we would make. Even when she knew about the party in advance. Guys had to limit the noise that lived above her, but still we would rage.

The things I used to do when needing sleep were pop in some earplugs and just have plain respect (during weeknights) not to play my music too loud. Everyone had a stereo they could blast, getting into competitions was not a healthy habit. When it was warm outside, I would turn a fan on for white noise. Eventually though, everyone gets used to the noise. It’s like living next to train tracks or knowing the garbage men are coming Monday at 4:30 in the morning.

Is it your fault for walking around your apartment or playing your music loud during the day? No.
Is it your fault if you come home and wake everyone up in your building? Damn right it is.

Just try not to be a dick. Investing in a few rugs wouldn’t hurt either. Oh, and if there’s a hallway like structure, I swear putting a cut up noodle around your door helps tremendously keeping noise in and out. I bet if you wrapped your sub in it that would limit the vibrations as well.
posted by thetenthstory at 3:48 PM on November 27, 2006

The way you walk makes all the difference in the world. Shoes on, shoes off, it doesn't matter; if you are a "heel" person you can shake the whole floor without even noticing. It's all a matter of the type of gait that you have, and I totally agree with everyone above that has said essentially that "heel walkers never realize that they're doing it."

Hell yes. The way you walk is important and does make a difference. That heavy banging thump is explosive and jarring and just totally unecessary. It is really one of the most awful things to live with, gets the adrenaline pumping making sleep difficult for a longish period afterwards. To avoid this problem you don't need to tiptoe, you just need to not slam the back of your foot down when you walk.

If this actually is the problem in your case (which it may or may not be, your neighbour does sound kinda highly strung) then you can fix it easily without spending money soundproofing anything. Rugs and stuff would be a waste of time if this is the issue, so spend a bit of time being aware of how you walk and what kind of noise it makes.

FWIW I'm a heavy walker by nature. But I also have wooden floors and rattley windows and jumpy cats so I walk more carefully in the house. It's not a huge change and became second nature very quickly.
posted by shelleycat at 10:52 PM on November 27, 2006

Some people are just crazy. I lived in an apartment complex for a year (the longest year of my life) and my downstairs neighbor used to bang on my door at 3 AM because my roommate and I were talking. Talking! No music. No TV. Just talking. And in a normal to low volume. She would also threaten us that her cop husband would come up. Excuse me, but I think I know the difference between a cop and a security guard. Obviously, we told her to fuck off.

I would ask what she expects you to do. Completely alter your schedule to match hers? Spend a bunch of your time and money to soundproof your room when she's the one with the problem? As long as you're being reasonable, I think this is just part of apartment living. Unless she's making your life really difficult, I wouldn't even consider moving.
posted by bda1972 at 11:22 PM on November 27, 2006

Necessitas' advice was the first I thought of. She can't stand having noise above her? Swap rooms. If she still has an issue and splits you certainly should have first right of refusal if you want that room back.
posted by phearlez at 2:15 PM on November 28, 2006

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