October 29, 2019

How To Deal With Bad Neighbors


How To Deal With Bad Neighbors

October 29, 2019

How To Deal With Bad Neighbors

Imagine this:

- You find your dream house

- Perfect neighborhood

- Moving day comes and passes with little stress

- You're in your new home and life couldn't be better!

Now you're relaxing on the couch ready to hit the hay AND WHAT?! Your neighbor decides now is a good time to blast their new Britney Spears album at FULL blast. Fine, you try to sleep through it but wake up to the kids next door playing dodgeball against the shared wall and this THUMP THUMP THUMP won't stop. The next morning, eye contact with your neighbor is tough to be made when you go out to throw out the garbage, you are frustrated! BUT WOW.. someones dog has left a gift for you on your side of the lawn.. this dream of yours is starting to become a nightmare. Take a breathe - Here are some info on stereotypical neighbors and some quick tips on how to deal with them (before you call the cops.. or worse, the cops are called on you):


  • The Stressed-out Cases -> the mom who yells non stop, the couples who are always fighting and have no care that everyone can hear them, the horn honkers and squealing tire drivers who are always in a hurry.
  • The Property Line Obsessors -> Your neighbor who is always watching their front lawn through their kitchen window to ensure no animal or humans steps on it, the one who will complain about your unkept hedges and how it looks bad for their home, worst – the ones who will actually trim your hedges that were crossing over on their property and then follow up by sending you the bill.
  • The Slobs -> These are the neighbors who are in their own little world, the grass never gets cut, the trash cans are left out for days after pickup, their kids toys are always spread across their lawn and the list keeps going.
  • The Careless Pet Owners -> Those neighbors who leaves their dog’s business everywhere, the ones who leave their animals out for way too long and all you can hear is their dog's barking and whining.
  • The Weirdos -> Last but not least, the randoms… the drunks, the drug dealers, the ones in everyone’s business and the neighbors you never see leave their house.

A bad neighbor could be anyone who lives next door (or a few doors down) or even on the next floor depending on your situation. In general, a bad neighbor would be someone who regularly gets on your nerves by doing something that’s not entirely illegal or wrong, but is very annoying.

Depending on the depth of the annoyance that this neighbor causes you, their can be a few different approaches to be taken. Unfortunately, with some cases, the best approach would be to just accept the situation and learn to stay indifferent to keep the peace as entering into a neighbor war can take a toll on you which is why these approaches should only be taken if needed too. You should also note that you should always address your bad neighbors with a friendly approach first and foremost.


1. Get to Know Them Better

By simply introducing yourself and letting your neighbors know what bothers you, that might make a difference all on its own. This will only work with some people but in general, people tend to usually get a little ashamed once they have been called out which can make them feel the need to show more respect. On a second note, this approach could also work as it’s possible your neighbor wasn’t even aware of the annoyances they were causing you and once told they will work on solving this problem. Try to keep this approach friendly and polite.

2. Mediate

While it can be hard for some to understand and take in other’s concerns and/or feelings it might make more sense to get someone else involved who will be able to mediate this conversation better between yourself and your neighbor. If you think this might be the case with the specific neighbor you're referring too, the mediator however does have to be someone who’s willing to help the benefit of both involved. If you’re renting, your landlord would be your best bet.

3. Warnings

Some people scare easy and don’t like confrontation or having people showing up at their door so sometimes this approach is really all you need. Informing that annoying neighbor and letting them know that you will be contacting either their landlord, the Homeowner’s association or the local authorities can sometimes give them the scare they need to act accordingly.

If you live in a planned development, you can also go through your papers you received when purchasing your house and you will most likely find some type of conditions or restrictions in your agreement which you could provide to that neighbor as reinforcement.

4. Seek Support From Other Neighbors

Have you heard of the saying “two is better than one” this is also true when trying to also get your point across when it comes to your bad neighbors behaviors. Most likely, you’re not the only one in your neighborhood who feels this way about your neighbor, this is when talking to other neighbors comes in handy as they could be on your side which is especially important if you decide to escalate this case to local authorities or take it to court.

5. Call the Neighbors landlord/Contact HOA

Most often people don’t like to complain or feel like their “tattle telling” on others, however sometimes it is the only way out especially if you’ve tried all other options and none of them have been working. If your neighbors are tenants, chances are that they don’t want to be evicted. If this is the case, after having reported the on-going issues to their landlord, you should see them taking it more seriously and seeing a change in their actions and/or behaviors.

If your neighbors are home owners, the simplest way to put a stop to their annoying behavior would be to report such issues with the Homeowners Association. Usually a manager of the association will either talk to that neighbor that you complained about or could even fine them if the warning doesn’t seem to be enough.

Finally, don't let your annoying neighbors ruin the idea for you that your home is a welcoming, homey place that you love to be at and share with your loved ones. You have dreamed of this forever space for long enough, don't let other's actions take away from your experience.

There is always a solution but when in doubt, contact your real estate agent. ;)

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