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Noisy and Smelly neighbour
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Leslie
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15/10/2018 - 10:44 am
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I have lived in a unit with my elderly mother in Western Sydney, NSW for nearly 3 years of what I would call “hell”. We are owners, as is the neighbour next to us. This neighbour does the majority of his sleeping during the day and repeatedly creates noise right near my bedroom wall – banging, tapping and scraping on wall all through the night. He also bangs on our bathroom walls whenever we are in there. In addition to this, he never comes out of his premises and accumulates bags of rubbish. Nearly 2 years ago, the Police were called because the smell was so bad that we thought someone was deceased.

Our strata manager initiated advice from Strata solicitors and this time last year, orders were made by NCAT. The neighbour had to let contractors into his unit as there was excessive mould that had to be removed and carpets had to be cleaned. The neighbour appeared to get in a cleaning service, however this only happened on 3 occasions. 

Here we are not even 12 months later, the smell is appalling and can be smelt in our unit, we have cockroach baits everywhere and have to constantly spray and feel intimidated by the amount of banging he does on our walls. We had our annual general Strata meeting a couple of weeks ago and will have to go down the NCAT route again. 

I am at the end of my tether, have an elderly mother and this is impacting dramatically on our physical and mental health. 

Please does anyone have any suggestions.

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BONNIE L
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15/10/2018 - 3:03 pm
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Hi, Sounds very stressful; also must be for the neighbour, especially if neighbour’s mother is difficult. 

Maybe this has been tried already, and getting this neighbour on side may also be a challenge, as sounds like heavy handed strata tactics haven’t worked. 

You don’t say whether the neighbour is working or financially ok, or perhaps on benefits.

Given the problem is not new, these options may have been tried already.  That is, to try a friendly on the grounds of the noise you mention, even suggest asking the neighbour has he/she consulted with the local council, or http://www.myagedcare.gov.au to ask re some help with housework on a regular basis.  I think this depends on the people’s finances.  Or yourself consult a friendly doctor to ask for advice on how to deal with the problem. 

My thinking is if this neighbour knows others are concerned, rather than angry, the banging may reduce, even stop.

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Leslie
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16/10/2018 - 12:25 pm
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BONNIE L said
Hi, Sounds very stressful; also must be for the neighbour, especially if neighbour’s mother is difficult.   

Actually, the mother is mine not the neighbour’s and I work in the mental health field and have provided the neighbour with information about support services. He does not work, however was able to pay over $15000 for mould removal, carpet cleaning and Strata legal fees. I have tried the concerned approach and he was putting his rubbish outside his door and my mother or I were taking it down for him.

It’s very hard to be concerned and not angry when you are kept awake night after night and have to hold down a full time job as well as care for your elderly mother. It’s not very nice either when you can smell a stench coming from his place into your own kitchen and are inhaling carcinogenics on a regular basis because the place would be overrun with vermin. Perhaps it’s time to call the Police. How would you like banging on your bathroom walls every time you shower or use the bathroom?

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zerobullying
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26/10/2018 - 8:27 am
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Hi Leslie, I also have neighbours (tenants) that bang on walls. My neighbour is a drinker and invites teenage boys to live with him and they have also had a rubbish problem and so on. I engaged the free community lawyer who wrote to the caretaker and for now the banging has stopped. Also, the caretaker has made the neighbour clean up some of his mess, but unfortunately he is still there.

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Leslie
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26/10/2018 - 2:00 pm
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zerobullying said
Hi Leslie, I also have neighbours (tenants) that bang on walls. My neighbour is a drinker and invites teenage boys to live with him and they have also had a rubbish problem and so on. I engaged the free community lawyer who wrote to the caretaker and for now the banging has stopped. Also, the caretaker has made the neighbour clean up some of his mess, but unfortunately he is still there.  

Thank you zerobullying for sharing your story and for making me not feel so alone. Our neighbour also bangs on the walls and creeps around them when we are using the bathroom which is very upsetting and intimidating for my elderly mother and myself. I called the Police last week and they have come out to speak with him and the banging on walls has at least improved. It looks like we will be going down the NCAT path again as we can smell his residence in our unit. I work in mental health and have tried to get neighbour some help (even offered to take his rubbish down to the bin station for him. Unfortunately, he doesn’t want to accept help. We are both unit owners. My mother and I have considered selling, however the bottom has fallen out of the property market now and we would lose too much money. Also, potential buyers would find out history and would not want to touch our unit.

Thank you once again for sharing your experiences and insight.

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