With less than three weeks until the big day (time to start boiling those sprouts), many of us will be geting ready to invite our friends and family round for a good old festive knees up. But those who rent need to make sure they remember their responsibilities or risk an unwanted present this year.
Just because you rent doesn’t mean you don’t need to do your neighbourly duty, warns the Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA) – in fact you could face the wrath of more than just your landlord if you turn the festive volume up too loud.
A spokesman from ARLA had this to say: “No one wants to be a killjoy but it’s important for tenants to remember they are not immune from their responsibilities to neighbours. While most renters are responsible, a small minority risk falling foul of their landlord, or even the law, if they push the limit this party season. Some common courtesy and making sure you’re familiar with your tenancy agreement and noise regulations should ensure a harmonious and fuss-free festive season.”
ARLA’s top tips to avoid festive fall-out
1. Let your neighbours know: More often than not, if neighbours are informed of a party in advance, they are more accommodating of the resulting noise. Giving advance warning means that they can either adapt their plans so they are less affected, or it can simply act as reassurance that the partying won’t be a persistent problem. Why not invite them to the party too? It’s a great way to build goodwill and allow them to join in the fun!
2. Check the small print: Some tenancy agreements contain rules about hosting parties or gatherings; make sure in advance that you’re not breaking any of them. If you have any concerns, it is always best to check directly with your landlord or letting agent.
3. Keep an eye on the clock: The Noise Act 1996 was introduced to outlaw those who have little or no respect for peace and quiet from 11pm to 7am. Make sure you keep your eyes on the time and when the clock turns 11pm, remember to turn your music down.
4. Choose your guests wisely: Remember that accidental damage that occurs during a party may come out of your deposit, so take care with your property’s fittings and furnishings. If damage does occur, it is always best to inform your landlord or letting agent as soon as possible to ensure you don’t get any unexpected charges when you move out.
5. The final straw: If persistent noise complaints are made, it could result in your eviction from a property. In England and Wales, section 144 of the Housing Act 1996 also allows excessive noise nuisance to be possible grounds for eviction.