Gransnet forums

House and home

Living in a semi - is it noisy?

(51 Posts)
SunnySusie Fri 19-Aug-22 20:46:30

We are 70 and have never lived in a semi, but are thinking of downsizing and in our area its probably the only option. I am worried about neighbour noise through the walls. I am a horrendously light sleeper. What are your experiences? We lived in a flat when we first married which was pretty noisy, then a mid-terrace where we also had noise, but after that its been detached houses and bungalows. Will I be able to hear people next door in a semi? and are older houses better or worse from this point of view?

MiniMoon Fri 19-Aug-22 20:49:40

I suppose it would depend upon your next door neighbours. I grew up in a semi and had 3 different sets of neighbours. We were lucky that noise wasn't a problem.

Shinamae Fri 19-Aug-22 20:54:26

I am the second one in a terrace of four and luckily have lovely quiet neighbours either side.. and I realise that I am very lucky in that..

Welshwife Fri 19-Aug-22 20:55:49

I think that modern houses have more insulation/soundproofing in them and if not it would be possible to get it done on your side of the adjoining wall. DGD is semi-detached from the house next door and we never notice anything.

granfromafar Fri 19-Aug-22 21:00:15

Have always lived in semis and depending on thickness of adjoining walls and type of neighbour, it shouldn't be a problem. Some noise is inevitable but if your bedroom is on the other side of the property then you should be fine. We have lived in our current semi for over 35 years and have been lucky with great neighbours over the years.

lixy Fri 19-Aug-22 21:00:36

DIY noise will pass through any wall of course, and so will coughing.
Talking with our party wall neighbours we found that other noise tended to go up and down within our own houses.
For example we couldn't hear a blender being used in each other's kitchen or alarm clocks.
It does depend though on which rooms have a party wall and, as minimoon says. on the neighbours.

tanith Fri 19-Aug-22 21:04:37

I rarely hear my neighbour and live in a semi although he has the loudest snore in the world ? it will depend on the neighbour I suppose but I've not had any problems.

tanith Fri 19-Aug-22 21:05:13

I meant to say sneeze not snore lol

Fleurpepper Fri 19-Aug-22 21:10:58

just depends on when it was built and by whome- and who your neighbours are.

We had the loveliest of neighbours in our first semi- but she liked to hoover around the bedrooms at midnight!!!

M0nica Fri 19-Aug-22 21:25:06

It also depends on where the hall and staircase are. We lived in a late Victorian semi and the halls and staircases of the two houses were either side of the party wall, and none of the rooms, bar bathroom and kitchen. We had no noise problems at all.

I would say the older the house the less the noise transmission as many modern houses have very poor sound insulation.

Jemimasmum Fri 19-Aug-22 21:38:26

We lived in our semi for over 40 years. The lady next door hardly made a sound. After she died a young couple moved in. He had a loud booming voice. They had parties every weekend even during lockdown. We had only realised how thin the walls were when this happened.
Reluctantly we have moved and have bought a detached.

Jaxjacky Fri 19-Aug-22 21:56:23

Our semi is 40 odd years old, we do hear diy, not really intrusively and rare, we don’t hear TV, voices or toilet flushing. I’ve lived in detached and semi’s and with decent neighbours a semi is fine.

Deedaa Fri 19-Aug-22 22:02:36

I'm in a 70s terrace and unless someone starts hammering I never hear anything from the houses on either side. I'm usually more worried about whether I'm being too noisy.

Ali23 Fri 19-Aug-22 22:07:57

We used to live in a1930s semi. We each had full length wardrobes on the party wall and noise didn’t seem to travel, but when new neighbours moved in we could hear their raised voices.

Aldom Fri 19-Aug-22 22:12:07

Semi detached houses, joined hallway to hallway are the best option. Non of the main rooms share a wall with the next door house. You might want to look at new builds. Insulation is very good these days.
I live in an eleven year old town house. The sound insulation is amazing, as is the heat insulation.
Good luck with your search.

Chardy Fri 19-Aug-22 22:13:53

Years ago, I downsized from a Victorian town house (a 3 storey terrace) to a Victorian cottage (much smaller terrace). Neither had any neighbour-noise problem

Zonne Fri 19-Aug-22 22:14:42

We’re in a 60s semi , the kitchen, hall and stairs are adjoining. We are on our third set of neighbours and have never heard anything except occasional DIY.

Ailsa43 Sat 20-Aug-22 00:12:35

We're also in a 60's semi. The stairs are on opposite sides of the party wall. The toilet, kitchen, and the front bedroom share a party wall.

We've had many neighbours during the 40 years we've lived here, and there's always been noise except for a lone male who rented..

The current tenants have 3 children, and they're like a herd of elephants running up and down stairs, and the high pitched screaming while they play in the adjoining bedroom is very clear to hear.

Also in the past a family who had a baby sleeping in the adjoining front bedroom, always woke us in the night with his crying.

Even while sitting in the living room which has no adjoining walls.. with the hallways between it and the neighbours hallways, with the living room door ajar , the noise of the children can be heard over the Television.. unless we firmly close the door.

Equally the flush of the toilet through the adjoining wall can be heard clearly.. during the day and very much more so at night , as can any conversation that people are having in either toilet or anyone talking on the top landing of either home.

NotSpaghetti Sat 20-Aug-22 00:34:12

Yes. You are likely to hear your neighbours and they you.

Is it noisy? - Well, yes, sometimes... in our case not all the time. If you have noisy neighbours then it will be noisy often.

I would live somewhere else if you don't want any noise.

MarinaL Sat 20-Aug-22 00:34:26

I've had to move twice because of noisy neighbours in semis both built around 1970. I even had sound proofing put on the lounge party wall and I could still hear their TV and music! My partner lived in a modern semi before we got together and the walls were paper thin. I must be very noise sensitive but there's no way I would live in a semi again. Moved to a detached a few years ago and it is bliss!

Teacheranne Sat 20-Aug-22 00:55:17

I have lived in four semis over the years and there has always been noise from next door! From a young couple with a crying baby to an old deaf lady with a blaring tv to a night shift worker who played loud music when he got in at 6 am!

Maybe I was unlucky! We didn’t move because of the noise though, my husband had several job moves.

Redhead56 Sat 20-Aug-22 01:24:00

My daughter lived in a Victorian semi with no complaints apart from distance to work. They moved nearer to work to a modern semi and cannot wait to move. They are totally unhappy about the noise from next door. Next on the agenda is looking for detached property that is affordable and convenient for work.

Smudgie Sat 20-Aug-22 01:49:24

SunnySusie, I think you need to think very carefully about this. When we were first married we bought a semi and everything was lovely until the couple next door has a baby. It woke us up regularly as did the parents rows about whose turn it was to get up and do the feed! They soon had another baby so we sold up and moved to the first of three detached properties over the years. We are now in a detached bungalow with quite a big garden in a small Close and with lovely neighbours who are all retired (like us) and as quiet as church mice. I am a very light sleeper too and can still remember the stress of waiting for the baby next door to cry. Downsizing usually means you are nearer other people, if you can, stay detached !!!

Calendargirl Sat 20-Aug-22 07:08:01

We lived in an end terrace of 4. Our neighbours were quiet people, we had a passage way between us. Sometimes you could hear them going upstairs, but that was all.

I expect we were noisier to them when the children were at home!

Calendargirl Sat 20-Aug-22 07:08:50

Our terrace was an old one, should have said, not modern.

Edwardian (very posh)!