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More Noisy Neighbours

Noisy tenants next door. What are my legal rights as homeowner? How can I put a stop to it? Thanks – Dec.

Hi Dec,

 

This is the second most frequently asked question on the legal column after inheritance rights - and noisy neighbours clearly are a problem around the country.

 

My first advice is always to knock on the door and advise them that they are causing a nuisance and ask them to tone it down a bit.  If you don’t get any satisfaction you can always consult a solicitor and ask the solicitor to write a letter them and if they are rent-paying tenants also send the solicitor’s letter to the landlord. 

 

With an apartment complex or gated community you can consult the management company because in all title documents there are covenants and agreements to say that occupiers of a property will not cause a nuisance to others. 

 

You could also call the Gardai but in a gated community or apartment complex the Gardai have limited powers if a public nuisance is not being created – in other words, if the noise is not disturbing people on the street.

 

You can also go to the local authority if it is a local authority house.

 

You can also consult the Environmental Protection Agency and complain about noise pollution.

 

The best way to do it, however, is to go to the District Court and swear out a nuisance summons. I always advise to get other disaffected neighbours to join you in this and go to court with strength in numbers.  You might also club together to pay for the services of one solicitor to bring the case to trial.

 

As a footnote, I always say that noisy neighbours are very foolish to reject any warning about their noise creation.  If they are rent-paying tenants they can be put out and lose their deposit.  If they actually own the property they can be sued for very substantial damages and have a judgment registered against their property.

The issues raised in the answer to this NewsTalk listener's question are dealt with in a general way as can only be the case on live radio. Before relying on the advice given in this answer, whether you heard the broadcast or are for the first time reading the issues here please do not rely on the broad advice given. For a detailed professional opinion please consult a qualified legal advisor and for further details read our disclaimer on the Home Page.

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