Unless you’re lucky enough to live in an extremely remote location, chances are you have to deal with your neighbors every so often. Perhaps you’ve hit the neighborhood jackpot and have neighbors who are helpful and kind, without being too nosy. Count your lucky stars! If you weren’t so fortunate when playing the neighborhood lottery, you might be dealing with intrusive, strange, or even downright rude people next door.
Whether you share an apartment wall or they’re down the block in a completely separate house, existing peacefully with neighbors who are just plain obnoxious can be a real chore. Don’t stress quite yet! I’ve got some tips for dealing with those neighbors that give you a headache — literally!
1. Develop a relationship.
Sure, maybe you don’t want to become carpool buddies or workout partners. But, it’s helpful to develop even a surface relationship with your neighbors. Perhaps you’ll just wave “hello” when you’re both getting your mail or briefly chat about the weather — nothing serious. However, it’s pretty much human nature that people are more considerate of people they feel like they know on some level. Your neighbor likely won’t care if they’re bothering you if they don’t even know who you are.
2. Keep documentation.
Whether your neighbor repeatedly hosts loud parties well into the night or continuously lets their dog treat your manicured yard as their personal restroom, it’s important that you document particular issues and problems. Keep detailed notes, including the date, time, and even photos. This information will be incredibly helpful to you, should you ever need to try more serious methods of getting your problems addressed.
3. Talk it out.
Before driving down to your local police station or getting a lawyer on the phone, your best bet is to try to talk it out with your neighbor first. In most cases, this will be at least somewhat effective. It’s possible that your neighbor isn’t even aware that their behavior is disruptive. So, when you’ve had enough, knock on their door and have a face-to-face conversation with them. That alone might be enough to resolve the issue once and for all!
4. Chat with other neighbors.
If the problem persists, it will be helpful to have a team of people behind you. Talk with some other neighbors in a close proximity to find out if they’re also being bothered by this particular neighbor’s behavior. If so, you can start a petition or approach the neighbor as a group. Or, if you end up needing to contact authorities, you’ll have more people backing your opinion. Power in numbers!
5. Try more serious measures.
When all else fails, it’s time to get serious. Try calling your landlord or homeowners association if you have one. If that’s not an option, reach out to a lawyer, mediator, or police officer — if the situation warrants it. If you simply can’t resolve the issue yourself, it’s time to call in some reinforcements.
Dealing with rude neighbors can be really draining. While confronting obnoxious neighbors will never be something you look forward to, these tips should help you make it through the uncomfortable situation — and solve the problem, too!
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