What can we do about constant and continuous noise in our rental?

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What can we do about constant and continuous noise in our rental?

My wife, child and I live in a basement suite. We recently have had another family of 3 move in upstairs. Their have been time where our neighbors have been really loud whether it’s them arguing to running and thumping which cause our lights to vibrate and flicker; the noise echos throughout the house. We’ve asked them on several occasions to please keep it down which just goes in one ear and out the other. We took the next step and told our landlord that the noise is unacceptable for I have an early start in the morning and our baby it always waking up from it. Sometimes the noise starts at we hear them arguing 11:00 pm and continues through to 6 am. Our landlord has talked to them and again the noise continues. Nothing is done about it. Our lease states that the premises shall be quiet after 9 pm. There is continuous noise and it’s getting a little frustrating dealing with this on a daily occurrence.

Asked on July 11, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Washington

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

In every residential lease there is an implied warranty (i.e. right) to "quiet enjoyment". What this means that a tenant has the right to the peaceful and undisturbed use of their rental premises (in your case due to the excessive noise this right has been breached). In such a situation basically a tenant has 2 options: withhold rent until the condition ceases (from action taken by either them or the landlord) or terminate the lease. Under your specific set of facts the first option appears unlikly at this point. However, ending your lease and vacating the premises does. If it comes down to this option, you could hold your landlord liable for reimbursement of any expenses incurred as a result of a move.

However before undertaking any such remedy you need to consult with an attorney who specializes in in landlord/tenant matters. At the very least you should speak with a tenant's rights advocacy organization. If you don't follow correct legal procedure as prescribed by your state law, you could find youeself incurring legal liability.


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