Upstairs neighbor stomps. What can I do?

By Tenant

When living in an apartment complex, you’d have to live with noise. Always bear in mind that there are other families living in the same building so noise in inevitable. You cannot file a complaint for every creak and talk to you hear through your apartment walls. With that said, you cannot be too sensitive about the noise. But if you are, then here are some possible suggestions for you.

  • Know the difference between intention and unintentional noise. Hearing footsteps from an upstairs apartment is an example of unintentional noise. You cannot tell your neighbors to not walk. They can’t fly and it’ll be very difficult for them to move around crawling. Intentional noise would be like if your neighbors are partying a lot even after multiple attempts to quiet him down. Another example would be noise created in the heat of passion (remind your neighbors that they are not in a motel/hotel).
  • If possible, get an apartment in the top floor. This way, you don’t have to worry about hearing your upstairs neighbors, you’d only need to worry about your side to side neighbors.
  • Respect your neighbors so they would respect you too. If you are a quiet neighbor and you cause no disturbance, for sure your neighbors will be ashamed to make a lot of noise too.


  • Talk to your neighbors in a nice way. Instead of banging on their door and shouting out threats, talk to them. They are more likely to cooperate with if you ask them real nice.


  • If the noise is excessive and is already a violation of your lease agreement then your landlord needs to be informed. Do this in writing and give the landlord about 5-10 days to talk to your neighbor and get him/her to quiet down.


  • Check the structure of the apartment floors. Hardwood flooring may look really elegant and lovely but they amplify noise so even if your neighbor is just a regular walker, his footsteps would still sound like stomps.

If you want a quieter apartment, look for one that has wall to wall carpeting. Carpets cushion the noise in between units so you are least likely to get disturbed. If the problem on noise persists even after you have informed your landlord, then maybe a formal complaint would help. RPA has a complaint center, where you can file a complaint for the resolution of your noise problems. I believe this is the link

Edited on: Tuesday, February 12th, 2013 10:24 pm

10 Responses to “Upstairs neighbor stomps. What can I do?”

My response: (We welcome stories, examples, explanations, answers and a touch of your personality)


February 12th, 2013 10:40 pm

That is something that you need to deal with since you are living in an apartment. Unfortunately, there is no law against noise.


February 13th, 2013 5:00 am

Uhm, how do you determine normal walkers from those who are not? There are people who stomp because they weigh a lot and others just stomp normally. Noise is just one of the common problems that you need to deal with when you’re living with other people in the same building.


February 13th, 2013 11:20 am

From my experience, excessive noise would be something that would reach the common areas of the house like the stairways or the lobby. There is no meter that would determine the level of noise that you are creating so I think it’s always best to speak in moderation and to have a party only when all of the other tenants in your building are invited! 😀


February 13th, 2013 5:40 pm

I would like to add to at least know who the other tenants are – if they are college students, families with kids, or seniors and so on. This way, you would have a general idea as to what to expect when it comes to noise.


February 14th, 2013 12:00 am

We had a neighbor like that before and after talking to him nicely and politely for about 5 times, we decided to file a complaint. I don’t know what the landlord did but we haven’t heard anything from that day on.


February 14th, 2013 6:20 am

If it is just the walking that you’re complaining about, you need to learn to live with it. Anyway, they probably won’t be walking the whole day everyday and the apartment may not even be big enough for a whole day of walking so just learn to live with it,


February 14th, 2013 12:40 pm

I am a big person and yes, I walk really heavily. Although I can’t tone down the noise I make when I walk, I try to be mindful of my neighbors by not walking beyond 10pm or very early in the morning. Anyway, my apartment is just small so everything’s just a few steps away. I also bought some fluffy indoor slippers to atleast cushion my footsteps since a carpet or rug is out of the question. They dust easily and they may slip on the polished hardwood floors in my apartment.


February 14th, 2013 7:00 pm

If you can’t stand the noise, move out. Maybe you can talk to your landlord about a breach in lease agreement, forcing you to move out and not pay any penalty or fees.


February 15th, 2013 1:20 am

Always choose the top floor if you can?t stand noise. PERIOD.


February 15th, 2013 7:40 am

Buy earplugs or some white noise machine to drown out the noise.


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