Whether people in your apartment building are causing noise, making the whole building smelly or consistently throwing large, non-broken-down boxes into the recycling bin, it’s not easy dealing with problems with neighbors.

If you’re a good neighbor, you may expect a certain level of respect, but you shouldn’t be too picky. Typically, you’re going to hear other neighbors cleaning, exercising, playing music or walking around, but jamming out to classic ’80s tunes at 2AM on a Wednesday may be a good enough reason to have a chat.

Get to Know Your Neighbors

Do your neighbors actually hate you?

You don’t have to be best buds with the people living across the hall, but making an effort to say “hello” will make problems with neighbors go more smoothly–no one wants to be cordial to someone who is unfriendly to them.

When you move in, make an effort to knock on neighbors’ doors and introduce yourself. Casually ask about their job hours and tell them yours. This simple communication can make a world of a difference.

Make it Your Fault

If you’re delivering a note, consider writing something like: “I am such a light sleeper and could wake up if a pin fell on the ground! It’s awful!” Being light-hearted and acting like they aren’t doing anything wrong may make them think twice before blasting music or trotting around the apartment late at night.

If your neighbors are smoking in their place and it’s causing the entire building to reek, tell them you’re allergic, or used to smoke but have been trying to quit!

Better yet, blame the issue on the building. Complaining is a weird way to connect with people sometimes, so say something like “These awful walls are so thin,” or “My creaky front door hardly closes.”

Ask Around

Do your neighbors actually hate you?

If day-in and day-out, you notice your neighbors blaring the television until the wee-hours of the morning, ask your other neighbors if the issues are bothering them as well. If it’s a problem for all tenants in the building, it may be time to raise the complaint with your neighbor.

Don’t gather the entire building to gang up on one person, but rather kindly say that it is something that everyone in the building is bothered by.

Want to be sneaky about it? Try to have a conversation with the person and play dumb… ask if they haven’t been able to sleep either because of the loud television or music.

Don’t Be Condescending

Writing a note to a noisy neighbor is always rough. Things can get lost in translation, and some wording can sound catty. Before putting a note on your neighbor’s door at 6AM because they played bass-heavy music until 2AM, think twice about what you’re saying.

Sure, you didn’t get any sleep and you’re angry, but it can be best to let yourself cool off before writing a note that is going to cause them to turn the volume up. Write down how you feel, set it aside and read it again a few hours later.

With these tips, solving problems with neighbors should be no problem at all! Have you had problems with neighbors? How did you solve them?