When you want to celebrate, a party at your place is the perfect option. You can accommodate friends and family, provide delicious food, and play your favorite music. But it’s not always simple, especially if you have neighbors close by, like in an apartment complex.
Having your own home doesn’t prevent neighbor complaints either. Most cities have noise ordinances in effect that make loud noises illegal in certain zones after a designated hour. If your party is too noisy, you might face contract disputes with your landlord, angry neighbors, or even the cops.
As a considerate neighbor, you don’t want to upset your neighborhood with an out-of-control party. That doesn’t mean canceling the party. It just means making certain considerations first.
Let Your Neighbors Know Ahead of Time
Surprise parties are fun when it’s someone’s birthday, but don’t keep your neighbors in the dark about what’s going on. If you’re inviting more than just a few people, and you believe it could get loud, give your neighbors a heads up.
It doesn’t have to be a formal task. Send a mass text to your neighbors or leave a note on their doors. Provide your name and contact information so that any neighbors with concerns can contact you, especially if the party gets rowdy.
Neighbors will complain if you don’t handle the parking situation. If an inconsiderate party guest blocked your driveway, you’d be annoyed too. Rather than making the parking a free-for-all, designate the best parking areas near your house or building.
Encourage attendees to carpool if there’s limited space. Suggest public parking nearby as well. If there’s a chance that guests who park in your lot could be booted or towed, warn them ahead of time.
Your neighbors might be okay with guests parking in front of their house (as long as it doesn’t block their driveway or mailbox), but you should check with them first. Many neighbors will be happy to help you out, especially if you return the favor when they want to have a party.
Turn Down the Music
For most parties, the music level will get the most complaints, especially if the bass is on high. Music is an important part of the party; it doesn’t need to be so quiet that you can’t hear it, but it shouldn’t be at full volume either.
Likewise, watch your speaker placement. Try to put them in a room that will absorb some of the sound, and keep them away from windows and doors. This will minimize sound breakout both outside and throughout your building if you live in a complex.
Make a Guest List
If you’re inviting a lot of people, consider making a guest list to control your numbers. Ask a friend to stand at the door, and only allow those who were invited to enter.
This might sound a little arrogant, but it’s a good practice for large parties in general, not just black tie events. If you tell friends you’re having a party, they might invite their co-workers and family, letting the party get out of control quickly. By controlling your guest list, you can keep noise to a minimum and better monitor your guests.
Ask Disruptive Guests to Leave
Sometimes, you’re left with no choice but to kick people out when they’re being too rowdy. You can’t control everything that happens at your party, but you can keep it from getting out of hand by asking them to leave before the neighbors get upset.
The chance for disruptive guests rises when you have an open bar. If you know that some of your guests are known to be wild when they’ve had a few drinks, consider limiting the bar or simply not inviting them.
Keep Parties Infrequent
Your neighbors are less likely to complain if your parties are few and far between. One night each year when you have loud music and guests over is pretty easy to tolerate. However, if you’re hosting parties every week or month, your neighbors may lose patience quickly.
Consider Relocating the Party
If your neighbors are the type to complain at the slightest noise, or you want to let loose at your party and not worry about your surroundings, consider other venues. A friend’s house, for example, might be far enough from neighbors that you can party without disturbing anyone.
There’s also the option of renting a venue. You could hold your party in a building on a busy city street or in a barn in the middle of the country. You’re not likely to disturb anyone here, and you can be as unruly as you like.
These steps can be applied to any party scene. Enjoy your celebration, knowing that your neighbors are unbothered and you’ll be able to continue your life in peace following the event.