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Mitigating Unwanted Apartment Noise

  • Emily Rice

Emily Rice

3 min read
Mitigating Unwanted Apartment Noise

Imagine coming home to your apartment wanting to relax, only to be interrupted by noise.

Among the many benefits to apartment living, noise isn’t one of them. Sound that you don’t necessarily want to hear, whether it be the wrong place or the wrong time, can be a nuisance.

So, as you sit there wanting things to be quieter, sound waves are coming into your apartment.

Sound waves can enter your apartment through a number of ways and when they do, they bounce off the walls, making materials vibrate, transmitting the sounds that our ears hear. The only way to stop sound from coming, it to interrupt the chain of events that produce sound.

By applying a few of the suggestions below, you can hopefully mitigate the amount of unwanted noise from entering your apartment.

Cover the Walls

The walls are what separate you from your neighbor. It only makes sense to add some things on the walls to enhance the barrier between the two.

Hang tapestries, felt, rubber, or cork fabrics to the walls.

Consider the placement of your furniture: dressers, TV stands, and bookcases so they are lined up against the wall.

Invest in some sound insulating panels to reduce the sound waves from transferring through.

Cover the Windows

Similar to a tapestry on the walls, windows are the same way. Hanging thick curtains on the windows can deaden the outside noise of traffic and street noise.

Cover the Floors

Although hardwood, tile, and linoleum floors look appealing, they transfer sound easily. Hard surfaces reflect interior sounds.

Property management probably won’t allow you to roll out wall-to-wall carpeting in your apartment; so, lay down some rugs! Not only will rugs help keep your neighbors’ noise out, but it will keep your noise in.

Break up the Air

Plants don’t just add to the ambiance to an apartment. Plants absorb sounds. Did you know that? It’s true, plant stems, leaves, branches, and wood absorb sounds, due to their waxy, flexible, surface area.

Check the Doorway

Take a look at the doors to your apartment, even the interior ones. If the doors don’t have draft blockers on the bottom, add those first. Sealing the gap around the doors will help reduce the sound from traveling into the apartment from the hallway.

White Noise

In definition, white noise is “noise containing many frequencies with equal intensities.”

You may be thinking that’s the opposite of what we’re talking about. White noise can help with masking unwanted sounds, like that of your neighbors, by creating a steady background of noise. White noise isn’t generally loud, it’s actually quite calming.

If the source of the noise is consistent or obviously loud, submit a complaint. While we all hope to have considerate neighbors, it isn’t always the case. As hard as you try to mitigate the noise, there are just some things that are out of your control. Share your concerns to your property manager. They are there to help.