Noisy neighbors: What you going to do?

By | September 7, 2009

We’re living in a rather large building in a rather large community in Taipei County. I’m not sure exactly how many people live in the building… but it’s 22 floors times 4-6 apartments per floor. So there could be over 300 people living in our building. Unfortunately, noise in such a large building is inevitable so you develop a ‘tolerance’ for noise. The most usual source for noise comes from those who live above you, as their floor is your ceiling.

To survive, you need to learn to ignore certain types of noise: dropping things (due to gravity!), footsteps, and moving furniture are the three most common sounds you will hear. But one of our neighbors upstairs has decided to take up some sort of exercise (the wife thinks it’s dancing) that includes the sound of stamping your feet regularly for thirty minutes: boom-boom-boom-boom-boom-boom-boom.

We don’t have the ability to hear the music she plays so all we hear is the seven booms and a few seconds interval. Who knows what it could be? Neighbors who are considerate would understand that they are making a noise, and they would refrain themselves to exercising at more sociable hours or go outside (yes, it’s warm here most of the year) to exercise.

Our neighbor seems to be either stupid or callous. I can’t decide which but she persists in dancing early in the morning despite our protestations and complaints to the building guards. So what are we going to do? Would that buildings like these were better designed to absorb sound rather than transmit the energy around?