10 Essential Tips Reduce Noises of Your Upstairs Neighbors

Upstairs, are there loud neighbours? This question often lingers in the minds of those seeking tranquilly in their living spaces. The issue of noisy neighbours can turn an otherwise peaceful sanctuary into an incessant symphony of disturbances.

Whether it’s the relentless thumping of footsteps, the thunderous sounds of furniture being rearranged, or the never-ending party upstairs, dealing with noisy neighbours can be a significant challenge.

In this discussion, we’ll explore various strategies to address this predicament, including proactive communication, understanding local regulations, and finding ways to mitigate the disruptive noises.

So, if you’ve ever wondered about the upstairs commotion and how to find respite from it, this article is for you. Let’s delve into the world of noisy neighbours and discover ways to restore tranquility to your living space.

Is Hearing Every Step My Upstairs Neighbour Takes Normal? 

Hearing some noise from your upstairs neighbour is relatively common, as sound can travel through the floor and ceiling structures in buildings. However, the degree of noise you experience can vary depending on various factors, such as:

  • the construction quality of the building,
  • the type of flooring,
  • the thickness of the ceiling, and
  • the activities of your neighbour.

If you can hear every step your upstairs neighbour takes, it may be indicative of poor sound insulation or other structural issues in your building. Excessive noise can be frustrating and impact your quality of life, especially if it occurs frequently or during unsociable hours.

Types of Noises Upstairs Neighbour Often Make

Here is a list of common types of noise that upstairs neighbours often make. Here are some examples:

Footsteps: Walking, running, or stomping sounds can be quite common from an upstairs neighbour, especially if they have heavy footsteps or engage in activities that involve movement.

Furniture Moving: The sounds of dragging or rearranging furniture can be noticeable, especially if your neighbour frequently changes their furniture layout or moves heavy items.

Impact noises: This includes sounds like dropping or throwing objects, which can be particularly bothersome if they occur frequently or at odd hours.

Pet Noises: If your upstairs neighbour has pets, you might hear barking, meowing, scratching, or running around, especially if the animals are particularly active or if they have a large breed dog.

Plumbing Noises: Water running, flushing toilets, or the sounds of showers can be audible, especially if there are plumbing issues or if your neighbour has an irregular schedule.

Musical Instruments: Your neighbours may play piano, guitar, or drums.

Voices and Conversations: Loud talking, shouting, or arguments can be disturbing, especially if the walls are thin or the voices carry easily.

I Give Up, My Upstairs Neighbours’ Footsteps Are Too Loud. So, Now What?

Keep in mind that while dealing with loud neighbours, having a courteous and open channel of communication is essential. In general, settling the dispute peacefully is the preferred course of action, but if all else fails, speaking with your landlord or property management can help you come up with something that works. If it doesn’t work, you have other options. We are going to talk about those in more detail next.

How to Deal with Noisy Neighbors – 10 Methods to Try

Method 1: Taking Care of the Situation Yourself

Choose an appropriate moment to speak with your neighbour about the problem. If you or your neighbours are night owls, plan to have a calm talk first thing in the morning, or wait until about dinner time.

Method 2: Noise Cancellation

You can manage it in a variety of ways. Put on headphones with music, for example, for temporary noises. You may also wear earplugs if you need extra peace and quiet while sleeping. Earplugs can help you obtain some quiet if you can’t block out noisy sounds using a white noise machine. 

Alternatively, you might use a white noise machine to block out quieter noises. If your neighbours are frequently disturbing your sleep, consider installing a white noise machine in your bedroom. 

Method 3: Acoustical Wall Paint

Acoustic paint, often known as soundproofing paint, is a quick-drying paint that may be used to minimise noise in your house.Because this paint is both water and UV resistant, it may be used in any space or location. 

Typically, each layer will reduce noise levels by 2 to 4 dB. After you apply this paint, you will notice a reduction in the annoyance of your upstairs neighbours’ noisy footfall. 

Method 4: Soundproof Ceiling

If they don’t take action, it’s time for you, the downstairs neighbour, to take matters into your own hands by installing a drop ceiling or soundproofing panels. Soundproofing requires adding a second layer of material to your existing ceiling. While this may not fully eliminate all of your annoying neighbour’s noise, it will greatly reduce it.

Soundproof ceilings are available in a variety of materials, including plasterboard, wood and composite. Your option is determined by your personal tastes and Budget. You may either go with a simple design or something that gives your area a little edge. 

Method 5: Install Acoustic Tiles

Acoustic tiles are made from a variety of materials, including wood, fibreglass, polyester, and soundproof foam. You may arrange them in any way to reduce noise in your house.

Method 6: Mass-loaded Vinyl Sound Barrier

Mass-loaded vinyl is the ideal material for adding mass to your walls, floors, and even ceilings without adding bulk. The major reason for utilizing this material is that it fully blocks out sound. 

Method 7: Use Acoustic Foam

It is one of the cheapest ways to protect oneself from loud upstairs neighbours. You may install it yourself or hire experts to install it in your home.

It is relatively simple to ascend the acoustic foam. There are numerous options for mounting the panels to the ceiling. The nicest thing is that it can be hung like a cloud. The procedure will work effectively in ceilings with pipes and obstructions. They can also be installed on the ceiling spikes.

Method 8: White Noise or Background Music

Playing white noise or soothing background music can help mask the sound of footsteps and make them less noticeable.

Method 9: Rearrange Your Furniture

The greater the mass between you and your neighbor, the less sound will pass through.  Rearrange fabric-covered couches and chairs to be near windows and doors. Use a lot of landscape design cushions and throws for extra quiet. The higher the density and weight of the fabric, the greater the absorption

Method 10: Change Your Living Arrangements

If the noise problem persists and affects your quality of life significantly, you might want to explore the possibility of moving to a different apartment or house where noise won’t be as much of an issue.


How Loud Is Too Loud for Upstairs Neighbors?

The perception of noise levels can vary from person to person. Limits are typically about 60 dB, while some areas allow loudness as high as 70 dB.  The acceptable noise level in residential buildings may also depend on local regulations, building codes, and the terms of your lease agreement.

Do White Noise Machines Work for Noisy Neighbours?

White noise machines will not fully eradicate noise, But it will assist to provide a more pleasant and continuous background sound. This might assist to drown out the noise from upstairs neighbours’ flat.

It’s worth noting that white noise machines work best for constant or repetitive noises such as traffic, appliances, or HVAC systems. They may be less effective for sudden or high-intensity sounds like loud music or shouting.

Is a Fan Considered White Noise?

A fan can produce white noise, but not all fans necessarily do. White noise is a type of noise that contains all audible frequencies in equal amounts, and it has a constant and steady sound. It is often used to mask or drown out other sounds and provide a soothing background noise.

Can I Make a Formal Complaint About My Noisy Upstairs Neighbor?

Yes, if the noise problem persists and informal communication fails to resolve the issue, you can make a formal complaint to your landlord, apartment management, or homeowners’ association. Be sure to provide detailed information about the disturbances, including dates, times, and specific instances of noise.

How Loud Is 70 Decibels?

70 decibels (dB) is considered to be moderately loud. It can be compared to the noise level of a busy street, a vacuum cleaner, or a normal conversation in a restaurant.

Final Words

Each method is appropriate for a particular context and has advantages and disadvantages. As a result, you must carefully consider all of your choices before selecting one.

Remember that some noise is unavoidable. Your upstairs neighbours have the same right to enjoy their home as you do, and the fact that you can hear them may not be their fault. Living in a multi-unit block may require you to endure some noise during typical daylight hours.

Adam Houdge
Adam Houdge

I am Adam Houdge, My journey to helping other peoples to have peaceful lives began. With our experience in soundproofing, we recommended tips & techniques that are affordable and easy to install. Read through our tips and techniques, apply them & Say Goodbye to Noises.

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