Dealing with noisy neighbours
The best approach for dealing with noisy neighbours is to talk to them and work together on a solution to the problem.
You may feel anxious about approaching your neighbour, but remember they may not be aware that they are disturbing you.
Talking about the noise early on can help make neighbours aware of the problem and be more considerate in the future.
If your problem isn’t easily resolved
If talking to your neighbour does not resolve the problem, you can contact the Department of Justice’s Dispute Resolution Centre, which helps resolve civil matters. The service is free and confidential. For more information, phone 1300 372 888 or visit the Dispute Settlement Centre of Victoria website.
Contact police or Council
You can contact us or the police to directly deal with the noise problem. Police and council officers can direct offenders to stop unreasonable noise for 12 hours. If a person does not comply with a police or Council direction, they can face on-the-spot fines. Directions can be issued at any time, and are normally used for noise such as loud parties or annoying air-conditioners during the prohibited times.
Make a noise complaint
It is illegal to cause unreasonable noise from any residential premises, according to the Environment Protection Act 1970.
Residential noise may be unreasonable at any time of the day, depending on its volume, intensity and duration, and the time, place and other circumstances in which it is produced.
Prohibited times for residential noise
The Environment Protection Authority (EPA) lists specific types of equipment and times their use is banned, including:
- air conditioners
- electric power tools
- lawn mowers
- musical instruments
The times depend on the type of equipment being used and the day of the week; but some equipment may still be too loud even when used during the appropriate times.
Find out about the EPA's prohibited times for residential noise.
To complain about noise from barking dogs, see Nuisance dogs and cats.
Noise from music and parties
Noise from music and parties that occurs after hours should be referred to the police, as they can deal with the noise as it is occurring, if they deem it to be unreasonable.
The permitted hours for building noise vary depending on whether the construction is for a new home or renovation works.
We investigate noise that is affecting surrounding areas and neighbours, and consider the level of the noise, the amenity of the area and any permit the company have allowing them to operate.
New home construction
For new residential houses being built, we enforce the Building Site Code of Practice requirements that noise from building works can only be made between:
- Weekdays, 7am to 6pm
- Saturdays 9am to 5pm
- Sundays 12pm to 4pm
Renovations and other building works
For noise related to renovations, extensions, demolition and electric power tools, we enforce the EPA noise regulations, which state that operating times for building sites are:
- Monday to Friday, 7am to 8pm
- Weekends and Public Holidays, 9am to 8pm
If building noise is occurring outside these allowed times:
- call us on 9217 2170