Can You Make an Anonymous Noise Complaint?
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Probably every person who lives in a block of flats or an apartment building has had the bad experience of having to listen to some neighbors partying at night or listening to loud music during the day or in the early evening.
Maybe they are arguing or they have many guests who contribute to the loudness that bothers you.
The questions we probably ask ourselves in a situation like this are – will they ever end this torture?
How can I stop them from making so much noise?
Should I complain and what would be the most efficient way to do that?
DO they have to know it was me?
Can You Do Anything About a Noisy Neighbor Anonymously?
Most of us would prefer to make this kind of complaint anonymously.
This is sometimes due to maintaining good relationships with the neighbors, other times because the person may want to avoid conflict if the noisy neighbors are prone to quarrels, and yet other times because they do not want to be seen as a moody and unpleasant complaining person.
Before doing anything, it would be good for you to get to know the country and local laws regarding noise and living in an apartment building.
That would be helpful because you would be well-informed and up to date with your rights.
With this, you could choose the best way to tackle the problem and solve it ultimately.
There is a number of things you could do before considering calling the police to interfere with the noisy neighbors.
Let us take a look at them.
Try Talking with Them
One of the first things that may come to your mind is knocking on the neighbors’ door and asking them to turn down the music politely.
Many reasonable people would understand your standpoint and comply with your request.
Unfortunately, there are those who would comply only that one time and continue doing the same on another occasion.
Also, there are those who would not accept your polite proposal, causing you to feel more irritated and frustrated with them.
They may also act impolitely or straightforward rudely.
It goes without saying that, if you act in a rude manner when you appear to complain, you can expect a similar reaction from the neighbor as well.
Now, this surely does not seem to be an anonymous complaint. It is certainly not if you do it personally.
However, if you want to save your face in front of the problematic neighbors and you know someone from the building who does not mind getting involved, you may ask that person to talk with the neighbors and simply not mention you in any case.
Try Soundproofing Your Apartment
This is a very effective way to deal with noisy neighbors.
You remain anonymous in that they are not aware that you have a problem with the noise that they make.
Nevertheless, this strategy does not involve a complaint or a solution for anyone other than you and your family, so we will not dwell on this anymore.
This whole blog is about soundproofing your apartment, so feel free to look around if you need guidance.
Try Involving the Landlord or the Building Manager
Whoever runs the building and manages it, should be aware of a noise issue that occurs.
This problem affects not only you, who is willing to complain, but all the other residents of the building, and in an extreme case, the residents of the nearby apartments from other buildings as well.
This can be done is two ways – oral or written. You can choose based on your own preferences.
You can have in mind that the written letter or email would be useful if the loud neighbors keep disturbing the public peace in this way.
In this case, the more details you write about the problem, the better.
These would include:
- Where did the noise come from, that is, which apartment?
- When did it happen and for how long?
- What kind of noise was it (music, TV, barking, loud talking, etc)?
- What action did you take before writing the complaint and what happened with that?
In this case, it would probably not be possible for you to remain anonymous to the person whom you are contacting to try and deal with the problem.
However, if you ask them not to tell the noisy neighbors who it was that made a complaint, you will stay unknown to them, which would, in turn, maintain the good neighboring relationship between the two of you.
Another way to deal with this situation is to find other neighbors that are also disturbed and make a joint complaint.
In that way, you may avoid being labeled by name when they try to solve the problem.
Can You Make an Anonymous Noise Complaint to the Police?
Of course, you can call the police!
However, that should definitely be the last thing you do, if nothing else works.
Well, involving the law may bring about inconveniences for the parties involved.
Also, there is a big question of whether you want your name involved in this kind of business at all.
Imagine that you did call 911 and made a complaint about the noise. The first thing that they ask is for the caller's introduction.
Though you may ask to remain anonymous, we cannot guarantee that that would be accepted.
The police need as much information about a problem as they can get.
First of all, this may prove not to pose an issue for the noisemakers.
You may come into the spotlight as a witness – you will have to give statements, go to the police, and you would definitely be the center of attention here – the victim of a disturbance.
Also, if the noise stops before the police arrive at the scene, you may be required to present evidence that the disturbance happened.
Also, the neighbors may find out that it was you and that could impair your future relationship.
Remember, no matter how bad they are, you are co-residents and have to meet, often on a daily basis.
Why bother with uncomfortable situations if you do not have to necessarily?
One more thing that can happen is that you get legally obliged to pose as a witness if the police decide to take legal action against the disturber of public peace.
So, even though you may ask the police officer not to mention your name when they go out to the scene, they may have the need to do it anyway.
One of the possible solutions to this would be to avoid calling 911 and trying to reach the local police station via the local phone number or the non-emergency number.
There may be a slightly better chance that your name remain anonymous and that they deal with the problem.
Can You Complain Anonymously in Other Countries?
UK – Yes, here you can make an anonymous complaint about noisy neighbors.
There are organizations other than the police that deal with this kind of problem, so people do not have to contact the police directly.
Also, there are third-party agencies, and even websites, through which anonymous complaints can be made safely.
Ireland – Anonymous noise complaints are not investigated in this country due to difficulties with investigations and proving a problem.
Instead, the confidentiality of the complainant is guaranteed.
However, just as is the case in the US, the complainant may be summoned to court should legal action be taken against the person who is responsible for the noise.
Australia – This country has several different organizations that deal with distinct types of noises.
There are also centers for the resolution of disputes and you can even get tips on how to resolve these issues.
We could not find any information about the anonymity of the complainant in this country, so we can only guess whether it is of the highest priority there.
Conclusion: On Making an Anonymous Noise Complaint
All in all, dealing with noisy neighbors can pose quite a stressful situation.
The most important piece of advice we can give you is to try and stay as composed as possible and deal with the problem calmly.
Think clearly about the benefits of your actions and do what you think is the best option, given the circumstances.
Remember that not many things can be done with complete anonymity.
If you want the problem to go away, you will probably have to gather your strength and accept that your name will probably pop up somewhere or that you will have to deal with it personally.
You might also like: Noisy Neighbors Revenge: 10 (Harmless) Ways to Get Them to Be Quiet