Complaints about neighbours

Help with neighbour disputes and how to complain about serious antisocial behaviour.

Talk to your neighbour

Discuss the issue with your neighbour if you can.

Your neighbours might not mean to upset you unless you have evidence their actions are intentional.

Problems about parking, bins, noise or shared areas can often be solved through talking and compromise.

Consider mediation

An independent mediator who is not involved in the dispute could help you reach an agreement. You and your neighbour must both agree to take part.

Your council or housing association may offer free mediation.

Sometimes you have to pay for mediation but this is cheaper than taking legal action to resolve a dispute.

Noise and littering

Your council should investigate complaints of environmental nuisance, such as loud music or littering.

If the problem is affecting your health the council can serve an order for your neighbour to stop. The council can sometimes seize speakers or sound systems.

A court may also grant you or your landlord an injunction ordering a neighbour to change their behaviour.

Hedges, trees and boundaries

Overhanging trees can usually be cut back to the property boundary if your neighbour won't do it. You should discuss this with them first.

You can complain to your council about a hedge over 2 metres high or a tree that could damage your property.

The council will expect you to discuss the issue and negotiate with your neighbour first.

The council could serve an order on your neighbour to fix the problem. Or they could do the work and charge for it.

Reporting antisocial behaviour

You can contact the council, a landlord or the police about antisocial behaviour.

Councils and housing associations have policies and teams to deal with antisocial behaviour.

Some private landlords will take steps to address problems with or between their tenants. Many councils have a private rented housing team that can look at complaints if a private landlord won't take action.

Keep a diary of the behaviour. Take photos or videos as evidence.

Contact the police if a neighbour is violent or you feel threatened.

If you're unhappy with the response

You can complain about how a council or a housing association deals with your case.

For example, if you think they didn't investigate properly or taken the rights steps to help.

Serious or ongoing antisocial behaviour

You can ask for a case review if you've reported antisocial behaviour to the council, a housing association or the police and feel that nothing or very little has been done.

This is sometimes called the 'community trigger'.

You can use it if you've made at least 3 complaints of antisocial behaviour within the last 6 months.

Last updated: 10 January 2022

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