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Neighbours from hell

(37 Posts)
Smurf52 Mon 02-Oct-17 23:55:23

In all my years I've been very lucky to have good neighbours. I've recently moved into a rented property in a new area. I love the house, it's just right for me.

One of the neighbours has taken to ringing my doorbell and banging on my door in the evening. This has happened regularly and as I live on my own unnerves me quite a bit. Initially I thought it was kids but this evening I heard giggling and footsteps running next door and banging their door shut. I know there are no kids, just a woman in her 20s and her mother. They can't talk normally, they have to shout or shriek. There's loud getting in and out of cars several times of an evening. I think they both work because it's quiet during the day apart from dog barking and the car is gone.

When I moved in there was an empty McDonalds bag and a cigarette packet lobbed over from next door. The tomato ketchup container is still on my lean-to roof as I can't reach it.

The neighbours fence was also down in several places and their staffie was getting into my garden to poo. Luckily when I contacted the letting agent about this, the actual landlord and landlady came round and put a temporary hardboard fence up and they have promised to replace the fence entirely even though it's the neighbour's.

They were so nice and are even letting me have a dog, something I haven't been able to do in previous rentals. I had asked if I could redecorate internally as I want to be here long term which probably has made them more approachable.

I don't want to move out when my initial six months is up because I've spent quite a lot on the place since moving in a month ago. I put a friendly letter through the door when I first arrived and offered to pay for a new fence but they totally ignored it. I have always smiled and said hi when I've seen them but they ignore me.

This is upsetting me as I thought this was going to be my long term happy home sad

cornergran Tue 03-Oct-17 03:28:29

I remember your post about your fence, smurf and my concern for you then. I don't have an answer for you sadly only some wonders. If you are on good terms with other neighbours you could get a sense of their experience with these people or with door banging. Is there any chance it isn't them and your first thought about children was accurate? Alternatively if the landlord is approachable ask him if previous tenants have had a problem, but then he may not tell you. I can only hope if this behaviour is from your neighbours it will stop if you don't react. If it doesn't, or there is other anti social behaviour you could seek advice from your local PCSO or the CAB about your experiences. I'm sure other people will have more informed advice for you but you know, sadly, in your situation if this were definitely neighbours I'm not sure I would be wanting to stay. I do understand your sadness and disappointment and hope there can be a resolution very soon.

BlueBelle Tue 03-Oct-17 05:15:18

I also wonder f you’re wrong and it isn’t them banging on your door If they are out at work all day why would they? Are you sure it’s not kids, the giggling also sounds more like kids I can’t see what two grown, working women would get out of banging on your door but I can also understand how unnerving it is whoever is doing it

I remember your thread from before where you were concerned more about the fence being open in one place which now seems to have been sorted ( be it temporarily)

I don’t actually understand if you are renting for six months with the opportunity to renew why you would ‘spend quite a lot on the place’ in the first month, until you knew it was going to be right for you, as you posted originally very soon after moving in with big reservations

I always think silence and ignoring is the quickest way to diffuse a situation like this, the more fuss you make the more they will provoke ( if it is them)

Hope it all sorts out

Liz46 Tue 03-Oct-17 06:59:22

Is it worth thinking about CCTV?

Riverwalk Tue 03-Oct-17 07:43:28

Be thankful that you're a tenant, not the owner, so you have the freedom to move! I certainly wouldn't be spending money so soon on decorating and fencing - the latter is surely not your responsibility anyway.

I can understand your reluctance to move as it costs money and it's a time-consuming upheaval, particularly trying to find a place that will allow a dog, however I would find the neighbour situation intolerable.

No wonder the landlord and agents are amenable - they've probably lost previous tenants because of the situation and are keen for you to stay.

Imperfect27 Tue 03-Oct-17 07:48:29

Dear Smurf I am sorry that you are feeling so unhappy in your new environment. However, I think it unlikely that it is neighbours knocking on your door and I wonder if you are being a little oversensitive to what you see as a series of 'negatives.'
Like you, I would find the dumping of rubbish very upsetting, but if this was an isolated incident , back-dating to before you moved in, then I would try to put it behind you. If more rubbish appears on your property from your neighbours, that is a different matter. That does not seem to be the case unless I have missed something.
Your landlord is sorting the fence out, so that is another potential problem solved.
It is hard to be on your own in a new environment, but I do wonder if it is your own anxiety, rather than 'nightmare neighbours' that is the real source of the problem.
Different people have different levels of how much they want to engage with neighbours. Unfriendly, but 'private' - keeping themselves to themselves, is not the same as problematical. If it is NOT your neighbours that have banged your door, I cannot really see that they are posing a problem to you - a disappointment if you had hoped to build a friendship, but not a problem.

Think about your own actions and your own hopes. Moving is very stressful - all the more so if you live alone, you are bound to be vulnerable, but maybe you just need to have more time to settle in.

IF the door banging does happen at the same time - or within the same time frame on a regular basis, it is worth reporting this as a PCSO/ Community Warden could be on hand to monitor and intervene in this situation.

PamelaJ1 Tue 03-Oct-17 07:52:48

I was going to suggest the same as Liz- a camera.
They don't cost very much and I don't think they are difficult to put up. Then you have proof if you need to take this any further.

TellNo1Ok Tue 03-Oct-17 10:06:58

I have to say that in similar circumstances i'd bite the bullet and plan to move..... you seem to have a future of trouble... why stay... try to move and put it all behind you. ..

M0nica Tue 03-Oct-17 10:08:57

Smurf unlike other posters, I do think it possible it is the neighbour banging on your door. We had a similar problem with a neighbour some years ago. In my case it was silent phone calls whenever I was in the garden, so that I had to stop what I was doing and go in to answer them.

Fortunately, the first week we moved in a rather embarrassed new neighbour said that I ought to know that there were problems with the neighbour living opposite and I was warned about just the kind of silent calls I received and also warned not to accept any offers of baby sitting.

If I was you I would put up a camera, somewhere visible where it can be seen, but not reached. That may well be enough to stop the annoyance, or even just a large sign on the door saying 'CCTV camera installed'.

DotMH1901 Tue 03-Oct-17 10:10:04

Is it possible that your neighbour thought the McDonald's bag came from your side and just lobbed it back? I had this issue with a neighbour once and used to find rubbish thrown over the fence. I spoke to her and said it wasn't mine, she had just assumed it was. Turned out to be teenagers from another street - another neighbour spotted them, our houses were the last two before they turned for their home so they just shoved the rubbish over the hedge. CCTV would help catch the culprits, again with the door knocking/bell ringing - this sounds more like teenagers that grown women, CCTV would show you who it is - you can even get an app for your mobile phone that lets you see who is at your front door remotely.

Sundancer123 Tue 03-Oct-17 10:25:19

I’m not a police officer, but there is legislation relating to harassment, alarm and distress.
As a suggestion, speak to your local community officer( just hoping you have one) and discuss the situation.
You could meet them away from the property.
Is this neighbour an owner occupier or renting via social housing? Also, speak to you local environmental department at the council, they can offer advice, like keeping a diary of the events. I wish you luck.💐

Jaycee5 Tue 03-Oct-17 10:39:01

The first thing that the Council will tell you to do if you speak to them is to keep a diary log so start doing that now and write down every incident however small. Your council will have advice as to how to deal with this kind of problem on their website. As soon as you have a detailed amount of information send it to them but continue to keep it and chase them if you don't get a response within a reasonable time.
If it escalates contact the safer neighbourhood team at your local police station. It is quite likely that these people are known to them.
Good luck. My nightmare neighbour has been away for about 6 weeks and it has been heaven but we are all worried about her return. We are hoping that she has applied for a transfer but her flat needs to be repaired and I think this has to be done before she can transfer so we think she may be returning.
I have had an unfair number of nightmare neighbours. One who played loud music all night would say that he was a reviewer for Capital radio when I complained. Another was selling cars (pretending to be a private seller) and he registered them at my address and I got piles of parking, speeding and every other kind of notice that it is possible to get with a car. It takes the DVLC ages to remedy that kind of thing. I informed the Police who said that he was known to them and I had a visit from a woman from the DWP who were investing him asking me about him.
In the first instance I sold my flat - and he moved out about 2 weeks after exchange which was really annoying.
Hopefully they will move. Fingers crossed.

Mojomax Tue 03-Oct-17 11:03:43

Unfortunately I know only too well about the horrors of a nightmare neighbour! So much so I had a stroke with all the stress they caused me. I'm shaking as I write this as it affected me so badly. This was about 8 year ago now and what you are experiencing is nothing compared to what I had to endure, but it is still enough to unnerve you as I can see. Please record every incident, and try if you can to get a cctv camera fitted before you do anything else so you can see exactly who us doing this. When you know and have proof of who is causing this go to the appropriate authority to get it nipped in the bud as life is not worth living with the stress and uncertainty of who or why some one would want to make your life a misery, other than that their life is miserable and worthless and they can't bare to see someone make a comfortable home for themselves and have a decent standard of life that they want to destroy.
I got the councils noise abatement office involved and they wanted us to go to a meeting with them (I forget what it's called at the moment!), but couldn't even face the woman. We had bought a beautiful Victorian terraced house, they were renting next door. We sold up and bought a detached and haven't looked back. People tried to tell me I was over-reacting, or telling me to ignore them etc, but this was a real situation, so go with your instinct and get proof, before it gets worse. This is how it started out for me and after months of trying to ignore it, I politely knocked on the door and said "I'm sure your not aware of how noise and music travels though our walls, but I would appreciate it if you could turn it down" in a friendly manner, to which I got a look of disgust but the music and other everyday noise got louder etc! I could go on and on about what other horrible things they did, but it would turn into a novel!!
Good luck Smurf, I hope you get it resolved smile

Mojomax Tue 03-Oct-17 11:06:17

Very good advice Jacee5. I started my post before you posted yours!

grandtanteJE65 Tue 03-Oct-17 11:07:27

I'm with Monica here, as if your neighbours either are alcoholics, on drugs, or suffer from some mental illness it might well be them ringing your doorbell. However, you can't do anything about it, unless you can prove it is them, so nip along to the nearest DIY store and find an outdoor camera that records what is going on outside your front door.

mags1234 Tue 03-Oct-17 11:41:24

Get a cctv that isn’t too expensive. U can always get it taken down if u decide to move, maybe speak to community police for advice?

linjon Tue 03-Oct-17 11:54:22

I’m so sorry to hear of your situation. I would definitely suggest cctv. The house next door to us is rented out by the owner and every time we get new tenants in I worry about who we will get. So far we have been very lucky but it can be awful having bad neighbours.

GillT57 Tue 03-Oct-17 11:59:48

Why on earth go to the expense and bother of buying CCTV? This is a rented property, my guess is that the landlord is bending over backwards to keep you there as previous tenants have moved out. I could not live next door to people who bawl and shout and bang doors. Why not look for somewhere else to live before you start spending money on a rented house? Before you move anywhere, go and visit the street on different days and different times of the day. What may be peaceful on a weekday morning may be hell on earth at weekends when schools are out! Many years ago, my plumber told me to always to visit at different times; he bought a lovely house based on arranged weekday visits, after moving in he discovered that his neighbour ( adjacent driveways) was a banger racing enthusiast, and spend the weekend revving, spraying, all with the radio on.......

Tweedle24 Tue 03-Oct-17 12:13:40

I can understand the reluctance to move. The house itself suits Smurf52 and moving house is a real disruption. It is said to be the second next stressor after bereavement and divorce.
There is good advice about contacting local police and council. I hope it is soon sorted.

sarahellenwhitney Tue 03-Oct-17 12:27:33

How distressing for you.You need to find out whether the previous tenant had problems with the neighbours.
If you were a purchaser of a property the vendor by law would have to disclose the likes of which you are experiencing
Contact your landlord he has to tell you and if you get no joy from him then Citizens Advice will put you in the right direction
This is intimidation and an offence.
Keep a diary of what is happening. ie date and the time.

Tessa101 Tue 03-Oct-17 12:40:09

I'm with a few of the others I wouldn't stay even if it's not them banging on your door, you say there loud and they ignore you after you've tried to be polite. I really would think hard before you think about throwing a dog in the mix.I think they are going to be intimidating and I'm sure if you ask other neighbours, previous tenants moved out due to them.I have a bad feeling about this and think this is just the start of it.Sorry! Do hope you find a solution.

GillT57 Tue 03-Oct-17 12:53:54

If you get CCTV and record the disturbances, then what are you going to do? Report them and things will surely get worse; there are many reported cases, some on here, of the intimidation that people have received from neighbours. You have had a hint of what could happen, take the hint, and move. Be grateful that you can, and than you don't have to try and sell it.

Marieeliz Tue 03-Oct-17 13:08:43

I am in sympathy with the Poster. I have posted on here previously about a neighbour who did building work for months in a Housing Trust Property. Low and behold she has done a swop to a larger Trust Property and are doing the same with that. The new tenant moved in six weeks ago she never spoke to me but I was slightly acquainted with a relation. Who said to me I have told her she has good neighbours!

This weekend a party took place into the early hours. I sleep in the bedroom next to their lounge, it wasn't loud music but loud raucous singing and shouting. at 11.45 I knocked, no answer as they could not hear me knocking. Tried to go to sleep impossible as it got louder. I got up again at 1.45 am and this time knocked on the window. I said it was after midnight and could they keep the noise down please.

I was told by the 4 or 5 people who came to the door that I was "out of order". One man grabbed me by the wrist and shook his finger in my face. I said "no you are out of order". If it does not stop I will call the police. The tenant said "Call them" I work with the Police. I believe she works for NHS. She is not young but middle aged. They had no intention of quieting down.

When I returned home one of the guests starting ringing my bell, initially I thought it might be to apologise but instinct stopped me opening the door.

I did ring the Police not expecting a response and initially there wasn't much help from the person on the other end of the phone. When I told them I had been grabbed by the wrist and someone was ringing on my doorbell as I was speaking to them they asked my age and said they would send someone as I was vulnerable. This neighbour is a so called medical professional. The police arrived quite quickly, I just saw the blue lights flashing, they rang me to be let in. They told them they were drunk but they said they weren't. Police asked if I wanted to press charges but as there were a dozen people there I could not single out the man who grabbed me. So I said no. The group at the front of the house then dispersed but there were still people at the back, when they went at 2.30 they made an extra loud noise obviously to make a point.

The police did tell me to keep a note of any further incidents and as she is a tenant report it to the Trust.

I put a card through this women's door when she moved in which her good luck in her new home. That's what you get for trying to be neighbourly.

Marieeliz Tue 03-Oct-17 13:10:42

Our little street was lovely no loud parties and everyone looking out for one another. I am going to get CCTV a few neighbours have it already.

Luckygirl Tue 03-Oct-17 13:49:24

TBH if I were you I would just move. Life's too short to endure this sort of thing.