Sound becomes noise when it intrudes upon your quality of life. An astounding 25% of U.S. households report diminished quality of life due disturbing levels of noise. Traffic is the most common source of nuisance noise. Other sources include: amplified music, car alarms, heating-cooling units, trains, airplanes, etc.
Fortunately CEDS has had a great deal of success in resolving nuisance noise from all of these sources and more. In fact, we've yet to encounter a noise issue we couldn't solve. But before paying CEDS several hundred dollars to eliminate nuisances degrading your quality of life, give our self-help Tips For Solving Nuisance Noise recommendations below a try. However, if you need help right away, contact us at 410-654-3021 or Help@ceds.org.
CEDS has been helping people eliminate neighborhood noise and other nuisances for more then two decades. Following is the approach we've found to be most effective. Further advice, including methods for identifying and correcting a variety of nuisances, is provided in the free 300-page CEDS book How To Win Land Development Issues. In the following paragraphs the person(s) causing a nuisance are referred to as the responsible party.
Your first step should always be direct contact with those you believe to be causing a nuisance.
When approaching the responsible party present your concerns along the following lines..."Hi. There's a noise that's been keeping me awake at night. I believe the noise is coming from the roof of your building. I'd like to see if there's a way to reduce the noise so I can sleep." If the noise is intermittent then a recording may help the responsible party verify the source then begin correction.
There are usually several ways to solve as nuisance. Occasionally folks get wedded to the first solution they think of. Don't make this mistake. Instead consider all solutions as you work with the responsible party to find that which works best for everyone.
There are a number of measures for reducing the amount of noise entering your home. While we urge citizens to aggressively pursue noise correction at the source, in rare instances this proves very difficult. In these unusual cases one should consider the wide variety of methods available for sound-proofing a home. For further detail visit the Noise Pollution Clearinghouse.
Generally you'll find it most difficult to resolve a nuisance if it appears you and your neighbor are engaged in a spite fight. If your initial efforts to work with the responsible party fail then the next actions will be more successful if you are supported by your neighbors and/or your homeowners association.
Most nuisances can be reported to your local zoning or code-enforcement agency. In fact, CEDS research shows that 61% of those who file a complaint report that it lead to elimination of the nuisance.
Your County, City or Town councilmember or commissioner can get things done far more easily then most of us. If you are dissatisfied with the action taken on your complaint then contact the local elected official(s) who represent you.
If the preceding actions have failed to resolve a nuisance then contact CEDS at 410-654-3021 or Help@ceds.org. We'll be delighted to see if we can help you get the problem solved. There will not be any charge for this initial advice. And if we can't nix the nuisance with this no-cost service, we can usually get it for fixed for a fee as low as $300 to $500.