Tenant Quarrel

10 Replies

Hi All, this is my first post and any recommendations would be appreciated. I own a duplex and one tenant keeps claiming my other tenant is making "banging" noises in the middle of the night that wake her. My accused tenant says they don't know what she is talking about and the have a 10 month old and are sleeping in the middle of the night. I think I just want to tell the tenant who keeps complaining to call the police. The complainer, outside of this issue, is probably a little better tenant if I had to compare the two but neither really cause me any issues outside of this.

Thanks!

um.. you could try to use like a sound/video recorder and catch on to what's really making the noise

Stay away! I tell my tenants that I don't get involved in their disputes with other people, tell them to call the police and send you a copy of the police report. You can use the police report to help you evict if necessary but don't get involved without the police. And they must call the police not you!

A sound video recorder?  C'mon now.

Stay out of it and tell them to call the police if they want or maybe they can actually talk to their fellow tenant.  Wait, that would make to much sense!

Michael Noto, Real Estate Agent in CT (#RES.0799665)
860-384-7570

Thanks all for the feedback. My thought of pushing this to the police seems right.

Is the complaining tenant elderly? If so, they may be hallucinating, possibly a dementia of some type.

No, complainer is single lady in her late forties. The accused is a late twenties couple with a small child. Either the couple is purposely doing something at 1 and 2am to wake her up every night or the single lady is exaggerating or making it up. So fun...

Julianne Moore just won the academy award for playing a lady who had dementia in her early 40's. I also just tell people to call the police. Once there was a noise issue and I sat down with all parties to work it out. It didn't really work...but you can try that if you feel like it.

Some of the older buildings have cheap insulation that is in the ceiling and walls.

You can almost hear every sound in the other unit. Also you can have loose pipes in the wall causing noises. Could be all kinds of things really.

Of course the noise could be (couple) made........ : )

You can't get involved. The complaining tenant could sleep with cheap ear plugs. That might be a solution.

I dealt with a lot of these types of complaints when I was a resident manager of a 26 unit building.  What I'd do with your complainer is probably sit her down and tell her something like, "You know, considering they have a baby, you're really lucky the baby isn't crying all night long.  There's nothing I can do about normal, reasonable noise in an apartment building, and if it's just a banging noise, that's not something I can do anything about.  Now, if they were having a raving party, I could do something about that.

I tell you what, if it gets to the point you just can't take it anymore, I'll understand, and I'll let you out of your lease with just 30 days notice.  That's really the best I can do."

I told tenants not to deal with each other, that their complaints were to go through me.  I didn't want tenants duking it out in the hall, or banging on each other's doors.

I could tell you some stories.  I'd get complaints that other tenants were having sex too loudly.  I'd tell them, I'm not going to deal with talking to tenants about their sex lives.  If you feel it's severe enough, call the police and let them talk to them LOL.

But with your complainer, I wouldn't tell her to call the cops.  That's giving her a license to harass the other tenant, in my opinion.  I think you need to explain to her that apartment living includes normal, reasonable noise by people living normal lives, and if that doesn't work for her in your building, you give her permission to break her lease and move.

Most of my complainers shut up when I gave them the "out" option.  

Just a thought, is it possible you have squirrels or rats in the walls or roof?  We'd occasionally get roof rats and would have to bait for them.  They'd bang around at night and the tenants would complain and we'd bait/trap them in the attic area.

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