Imagine this. You come home after a hectic day. You want to kick back with a beer (or whatever you take) and have an easy time. Then, out of nowhere, your noisy upstairs neighbor’s stomping. Annoying, right?
As they are walking, your ceiling and even the floor vibrates. What should you do?
Why can you hear the stomping?
Before we move to what you can do, let’s first understand why you hear the noise in the first place. One of the prime reasons you can hear the noise is due to thin floors.
It’s normal for property developers to cut corners and install thin floors. After all, they are after profits, and they aren’t going to live in the house, right?
You will also hear the noises if your upstairs neighbor has removed their rugs/carpets, and they are walking on a naked floor.
Regardless of the reason you hear the stomping, there are several things you can do to stop it. Some of these things include:
Report to the building manager
Some people will argue that the first step is to talk to the neighbor, but you should know people generally don’t like taking instructions from strangers.
Since you aren’t acquitted to your neighbor, the first place to take your complaint is to the building manager.
Let them know what you are going through. Chances are the manager who has had similar problems and knows better how to deal with such issues.
You should note reporting the issue to the manager isn’t a guarantee the problem will go away. Sometimes it might get worse, especially if the neighbor is stubborn.
Talk to your neighbor.
If you have reported the issue to the manager and still the problem isn’t going away, you should now talk to your neighbor.
If the management didn’t notify the neighbor about the complaint, chances are they aren’t aware they are making the noise, and the most considerate ones won’t have a problem changing their behavior.
As you are thinking about talking to your neighbor, remember you are asking them to make a switch from their normal and most likely spend money (on rugs and carpets) to make your life better.
Since you want them to go out of their way, you should be respectful of how you approach the issue.
If you know the neighbor’s schedule, go to their place at a time that is more convenient for them. This shouldn’t be when they are leaving for work or are just back from a tedious day.
One of the best times is in the evening when they are relaxed or during the weekends.
Remember, even when you let the neighbor know about the issue, they aren’t going to make immediate adjustments—it will take time as they will have to get rugs, rearrange the furniture, buy slippers, have a fridge-ectomy, among many other things.
Give the neighbors time, and if they took your words seriously, the stomping would stop or reduce.
Write a note
Are you one of the people that don’t like confrontations? If you aren’t comfortable facing the neighbor face to face, consider writing a note and put it in their mailbox.
To increase the chances of the neighbor taking action, ensure the note is friendly. Avoid sarcastic, threatening, or condescending language.
Also, keep it short. Four to five sentences are enough to get the word across.
Block the noise
Did you know you can block the stomping, so you don’t hear it? Some of the ways you can do it include:
Headphones are ideal when the stomping happens for a short while, then it goes away. Instead of getting worked up over your neighbors walking, put on a pair of headphones, and turn on your favorite music.
The music will drown the annoying stomping, and you can go back to what you were doing.
Try a white noise machine.
Is the noise coming through your bedroom? You can try to drown it using a white noise machine.
The machine emits soft sounds such as static rushing water or nature sounds that can go a long way towards drowning the unwanted stomping sounds from upstairs.
Put on earplugs
Are the stomping sounds too loud to drown with a white noise machine? Earplugs might help you block them.
Get industrial strength from earplugs in the shape of your ear canal, and you will enjoy your sleep and have fun when working despite the neighbor making noise.
Talk to the police
Have you tried asking the neighbor to keep it down without success? Call the police on their emergency line and report the issue.
The police are trained to respond to plenty of issues, including disputes between neighbors, but they have other pressing matters to attend to, so only consider contacting them when everything else has failed.
Before you contact them, first check your complex rules and confirm noise rules or rules requiring the upper floors to be carpeted.
Put on a ceiling vibrator.
Have you done everything to stop the stomping, and still, the issue isn’t getting better? Why not take matters into your hands? One of the ways is using a ceiling vibrator.
The vibrator is made up of a motor, extendable rod, Wi-Fi remote, and a cable. It creates vibrations on the ceiling that are subsequently unleashed on your upstairs neighbor’s floor.
The attractive thing is the vibrator is affordable and easy to use. Would you like to know more about it? Read about it here:
Play racquetball against the ceiling
Like the vibrator, the racquetball is cheap and highly effective when executed properly. Bored in the house, and the elephant man is still stomping? Why not unleash the Serena Williams in you?
Grab a tennis ball and racket and volley the ball against the ceiling persistently and consistently. To get into the neighbor’s skin, play during the odd hours of the night or early morning.
When the neighbor asks you to stop, let them know about the stomping, and stand your ground, you will only stop if they stop walking as if they swallowed the fridge.
Can’t stand the noise anymore? Consider moving out. Ask your landlord if there is any other unit you can move into. If there is none, you may have to break the lease.
If your landlord is aware of the issue, most of them will work with you in finding a quiet apartment. Others will allow you to break the lease without a penalty.
Soundproof the ceiling
Don’t want to move and got some money you don’t mind spending? Soundproof the ceiling for a more permanent solution. Most soundproofing options involve placing a second layer of soundproofing material over the ceiling.
You can install acoustic tiles held in place by a metal grid, add a second layer of sheetrock, or paint the ceiling with dampening products such as Green Glue. It’s up to you.
Do everything you can to have a quiet home you enjoy living in.