Anti-social behaviour (ASB)
What can you do?
The council will never recommend taking the law into your own hands.
Retaliation by carrying out the same behaviour as the perpetrator e.g. turning up your music as well is not acceptable either. You could end up behaving anti-socially, and affecting the lives of other people living around you as well, who have nothing to do with the problems between yourself and your neighbour.
The following advice gives you some ideas on how to deal with a dispute with your neighbour. Disagreements with neighbours can arise over everyday things like badly behaved children, car parking and uncontrolled pets. It is often difficult to resolve problems without those involved talking to each other.
1. Speaking face to face with your neighbour
This is usually the best approach, as most people are reasonable if approached in person. It is certainly better than banging and shouting, which will generally make matters worse. It is also better than putting a note through their door, which can seem unfriendly.
Remember, people are often unaware that they or someone in their household are causing you a nuisance.
If you do not think it is safe, or if you feel uncomfortable approaching your neighbour, talk to your Housing Officer first.
2. Preparation – before approaching your neighbour
Think what you want to say before approaching your neighbour.
- Have a clear and simple message in mind and don’t stray from the main issue.
- Be clear about what the problem is and how it affects you.
- Try talking to a friend, your Housing Officer (Council Tenants), Communities Officer( non council tenants) or a local advice agency such as the Citizens Advise Bureau about the problem, as this might make it clear in your mind.
3. When you speak to your neighbour
Try stay calm and friendly. Being aggressive is not going to help.
- Explain what the problem is, how you feel and how it affects you. Often people may not realise that a problem exists.
- Listen to your neighbour and think about what they are saying. They too will have a view, and better results can be achieved if people listen as well as talk.
- Try not to interrupt your neighbour when they are talking.
- Try not to shout or use bad language, even if your neighbour does. It will help if you keep in control.
- Avoid bringing up incidents from the past, especially if they are not relevant to the present dispute. Try instead to think how you want things to change for the future.
- If your neighbour is aggressive or unreasonable – leave the discussion.
Last updated Wednesday, 1st June 2022