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Old 21.05.2008, 11:42
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Help! Stubborn Noisy Neighbour

Hi Folks,

Perhaps some of you have had the misfortune of a stubborn noisy neighbour and may be able to offer me some advice to remedy the situation.

The main problem: Neighbour has electrical shutter roller (to open and close) that is set for 5:20am every morning. As it works it makes a loud whirring motor sound for about 40 seconds. It is not possible to sleep through this noise. So, I asked nicely on four occasions now, if he wouldn't mind turning it off or setting it for later (7am or later would be ok for me). The agency wrote him a letter months ago, but the problem persists (I will follow up with them again, but I have no confidence in their ability to bring any change). He insists he needs it for home security and he likes to work at home that early in the morning with the shutter up (when it is still dark out). He is beyond retirement age and I suspect he is sadly just keeping up a routine that he no longer needs to (but this is irrelevant).

To me, none of these reasons for insisting on using such a noisy appliance so early in the morning are reasonable, but what can I do?

Any advice greatly appreciated.
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Old 21.05.2008, 11:48
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Re: Help! Stubborn Noisy Neighbour

A small screw jammed in the workings the night before might solve the problem for a few days while he gets it fixed...

Sorry, not really got any real advice but the agency seems a bit ineffective (or at least lazy) if his tenant hasn't at least taken the hint after a letter from them.

Definitely follow up with them and tell them you will bring the renters' rights body (mietversomething-or-other mentioned on other parts of this forum) into the matter if they don't sort it out.
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Old 21.05.2008, 11:54
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Re: Help! Stubborn Noisy Neighbour

Yes especially, if you tried to talk to him 4 times....

How he was? nice but stobburn? agressive?

Maybe you could invite him to your place to heard the noise? If he realise how loud it is, he might feel enough sorry for you to change the habits?
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Old 21.05.2008, 12:00
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Re: Help! Stubborn Noisy Neighbour

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Definitely follow up with them and tell them you will bring the renters' rights body (mietversomething-or-other mentioned on other parts of this forum) into the matter if they don't sort it out.
Found it: Mieterverband
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Old 21.05.2008, 13:25
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Re: Help! Stubborn Noisy Neighbour

He was calm but stubborn. I don't know him well enough to know why he's being so stubborn though. I have not infringed on his rights in any way. I hardly spend much time there and just use it as a place to sleep and hold my stuff.

I am not renting my apartment, so can't use the mietverband. Is there an equivalent organisation for property owners?
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Old 22.05.2008, 04:12
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Re: Help! Stubborn Noisy Neighbour

let s see

how about an anonymous "gift" : boa constrictor, Black Widow spider, curare dart....

should do the trick.... lol
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Old 22.05.2008, 07:26
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Re: Help! Stubborn Noisy Neighbour

Neighbours! Tell me about it. I have never found perfect neighbours wherever I have lived.

In the UK I had an elderly neighbour who let her two dogs out every morning at 6:30am (quite late by Swiss standards, but the middle of the night for Britain).

Despite discussing it and her agreeing to let her dogs out at 7:00am in the week and 7:30 at weekends, she let them out 5 minutes earlier each day. In the end the most effective way was to phone her up when we were woken to thank her kindly and advise that the neighbourhood was now wide awake and she could take the dogs in now. She had no answer to this.

In the end I just let her phone ring a couple of times when the dogs were let out too soon and she brought them in.

I suggest you get this guy's phone number and phone him each time you are woken. If you phone is by the bed, you don't even need to get up...
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Old 22.05.2008, 08:32
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Re: Help! Stubborn Noisy Neighbour

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Hi Folks,

Perhaps some of you have had the misfortune of a stubborn noisy neighbour and may be able to offer me some advice to remedy the situation.

The main problem: Neighbour has electrical shutter roller (to open and close) that is set for 5:20am every morning. As it works it makes a loud whirring motor sound for about 40 seconds. It is not possible to sleep through this noise. So, I asked nicely on four occasions now, if he wouldn't mind turning it off or setting it for later (7am or later would be ok for me). The agency wrote him a letter months ago, but the problem persists (I will follow up with them again, but I have no confidence in their ability to bring any change). He insists he needs it for home security and he likes to work at home that early in the morning with the shutter up (when it is still dark out). He is beyond retirement age and I suspect he is sadly just keeping up a routine that he no longer needs to (but this is irrelevant).

To me, none of these reasons for insisting on using such a noisy appliance so early in the morning are reasonable, but what can I do?

Any advice greatly appreciated.
In every gemeinde there is a law that states what are the quiet times, and in those times, it is strictly forbidden to make noise particularly with motors, like a lawn mower. While the shutters are not as loud, they still use a motor. I am up very early and I won't open my shutters completely at that time...just tilt them until a bit later.

Never mind the agency...see what the noise rule is where you live and visit the gemeinde.
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Old 22.05.2008, 08:51
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Re: Help! Stubborn Noisy Neighbour

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Hi Folks,

The agency wrote him a letter months ago, but the problem persists (I will follow up with them again, but I have no confidence in their ability to bring any change). .
keep putting pressure on the agency, call the agency up everyday to ask for progress. Meanwhile , check the noise regulation in your own canton. if you manage to find the answer (better with document), hand it to the agency and push them to follow up for you.

if it doesn't work, could you call the police and get them to come say 10 mins before the 'blast' and let the police to talk to the neighbor.

if it doesn't work as well, record the sound and play it at 4.20 at your neighbor's door. Tell him it's your electric shutter that works at 4.20.
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Old 22.05.2008, 08:55
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Re: Help! Stubborn Noisy Neighbour

Just try to make him realize how you feel, with the noize that early.
Go other way, see when is he sleeping and make some noize that will wake him up in the evening or even earlier than his shutter. Make some noize late in the evening (he is probably early in the bed if he goes up so early in the morning) and if he complains, just tell him that you like to stay up late in the evening or this is how it feels for you when his shutters go up 5 a.m.
If you tried to talk him and he does not want to compromise, then play his game.
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Old 22.05.2008, 08:59
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Re: Help! Stubborn Noisy Neighbour

We have a couple of noisy roller shutters that we make sure are put down before 10pm. They have a broken plastic part in the top that causes the noise, so your neighbour must have a similar problem. They are quite expensive to repair. I paid 900 francs for 2 blinds to be repaired last year, so i'm waiting until it really stops working.

I would suggest writing to your Verwaltung/building manager and get this repair sorted out.

If your neighbour turns out to be responsible for paying for this repair, perhaps the shock of the repair quote will make him put them down earlier

..or try putting your shutters up 30 minutes earlier than him
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Old 22.05.2008, 09:14
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Re: Help! Stubborn Noisy Neighbour

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The main problem: Neighbour has electrical shutter roller (to open and close) that is set for 5:20am every morning. As it works it makes a loud whirring motor sound for about 40 seconds. It is not possible to sleep through this noise. So, I asked nicely on four occasions now, if he wouldn't mind turning it off or setting it for later (7am or later would be ok for me). The agency wrote him a letter months ago, but the problem persists (I will follow up with them again, but I have no confidence in their ability to bring any change).
You talk about an "agency" but then in a later post say the apartments aren't rentals? Or is he renting a privately owned apartments and you're living in your own apartment? If that's the case you can almost forget about getting any help from this "agency" as there is nothing you can actually do to force this agency to act. We have similar problems in our apartment association with a renter and the owner of the apartment could care less.
Try sending him a "friendly" letter detailing the noise problem at the unreasonable time of the morning requesting him to reset his shutter to a later time then inform him that if the situation doesn't change soon you will be forced to file an excessive noise complaint with the police. Be sure to send it to him by registered mail so you'll have proof that he actually received your request.
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Old 22.05.2008, 09:15
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Re: Help! Stubborn Noisy Neighbour

Somewhere I read that if this is a persistant noise and noone is doing anything about it and the situation doesnt improve then you can tell the regie to reduce your rent ))))
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Old 22.05.2008, 09:21
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Re: Help! Stubborn Noisy Neighbour

...by the way....should this thread belong to 'complaint corner' ??????
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Old 22.05.2008, 09:25
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Re: Help! Stubborn Noisy Neighbour

Thanks for all the replies guys. I see the Gemeinde route as the most promising and will also go along the formal letter route with the agency (Verwaltung). While I have in those small hours right after the awakening, fantasised about the other options, spiders, revenge noise, etc, I'll try and stay on the right side of the law for the time being.
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Old 22.05.2008, 09:27
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Re: Help! Stubborn Noisy Neighbour

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...by the way....should this thread belong to 'complaint corner' ??????
Good question. I think it belongs here though since I am seeking advice mainly about housing-related laws and rules with respect to noise. I could be wrong.
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Old 22.05.2008, 09:29
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Re: Help! Stubborn Noisy Neighbour

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..or try putting your shutters up 30 minutes earlier than him
Ooooh no thanks. 5:20am is early enough for me!
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Old 22.05.2008, 09:36
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Re: Help! Stubborn Noisy Neighbour

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will also go along the formal letter route with the agency (Verwaltung).
Ah ha.. this agency you talk about is the Verwaltung, they have absolutely no jurisdiction in such matters. They might pass on your request to the other party but that's it, obviously they can't "evict" the owner of an apartment so such problems have to be worked out on your own. Write directly to the owner of the apartment your complaint, going through a 3rd party (die Verwaltung) will just be a waste of your time (and sleep).
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Old 22.05.2008, 09:45
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Re: Help! Stubborn Noisy Neighbour

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Ah ha.. this agency you talk about is the Verwaltung, they have absolutely no jurisdiction in such matters. They might pass on your request to the other party but that's it, obviously they can't "evict" the owner of an apartment so such problems have to be worked out on your own. Write directly to the owner of the apartment your complaint, going through a 3rd party (die Verwaltung) will just be a waste of your time (and sleep).
I would write to whoever is responsible for repairing the shutters. In a "Mit Eigenturm" with shared communal situation for the building, then the Verwaltung/managment company is the right person.
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Old 22.05.2008, 09:46
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Re: Help! Stubborn Noisy Neighbour

You are right. I was working under the impression that he was renting, but I should definitely be sure of this before wasting my time and sleep. Thanks.
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