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Upstairs Neighbors Stomping at Night? 15 Actions to Take

Having noisy upstairs neighbors who constantly stomp around at night can be incredibly frustrating. Believe me, I feel your pain. As someone who has dealt with this sleep-depriving issue in the past, I know how hard it can be to get a good night’s rest when it sounds like a herd of elephants is marching overhead.

But I soon realized retaliation wasn’t the best solution. All it did was escalate the noise war between us. I had to take the high road if I wanted real peace and quiet at night.

After much trial and error, I discovered several techniques that finally resolved my noisy neighbor issue. In this blog post, I’ll share 15 tips that really worked for me.

Hopefully, they’ll help you deal with your upstairs stompers and finally get some decent shut-eye!

Find out: 17 Solutions to My Neighbor Upstairs Stomping Woes That Work

1. Avoid retaliating

I know the temptation is strong, but resist the urge to retaliate when noisy upstairs neighbors stomp at night. As satisfying as revenge may feel, blasting music back at them or banging on the ceiling will only escalate the noise war.

Trust me, I learned this lesson the hard way. My passive-aggressive noise tactics only caused the stomping to get louder and our sleepless, noisy nights to multiply.

Retaliation may provide momentary satisfaction, but it won’t lead to a real solution. Resist the cycle of escalating noise pollution and hostility. The high road is the best path to peace and quiet.

2. Talk to them politely

Before reacting in anger, try having a polite conversation. Knock on your upstairs neighbors’ door during the day and kindly explain how the noise from their stomping at night disturbs your sleep.

They may be unaware of the extent of noise transfer between units. If approached diplomatically, reasonable neighbors will likely make an effort to walk more softly once they understand. This simple, congenial talk made a big difference in my situation.

3. Write a polite note

If knocking on your upstairs neighbors’ door feels too intimidating, try writing a friendly note instead. The day after a particularly noisy night, I taped a message to their door:

“Hi Neighbors,

I wanted to let you know that I can hear a lot of stomping from your unit at night. It makes it very hard for me to sleep. I’m sure you aren’t trying to disturb me intentionally. Could you please be mindful of walking softly, especially after 10 pm? I would really appreciate it.

Thank you!
Your Downstairs Neighbor”

This simple note got the point across politely. My neighbors later told me they hadn’t realized how loud their footsteps seemed downstairs. Just making them aware of the issue prompted them to adjust their nighttime habits.

Find out: 17 Solutions to My Neighbor Upstairs Stomping Woes That Work

A courteous note can be an effective way to communicate the noise problem without confrontation. It also provides helpful documentation if the issue escalates.

4. Choose the right timing

When approaching your neighbors about the noise issue, timing is everything. Late at night when the stomping is actually occurring is likely the worst time. Emotions tend to run high and lead to unproductive conflicts.

Instead, I recommend catching your noisy upstairs neighbors during the day when they are more likely to be calm and receptive. Knock on their door on a Saturday afternoon when you can have a rational discussion without anyone fuming from a sleepless night.

The goal is to have a congenial conversation, not an angry confrontation. Choose a time when neither party is already upset so you can diplomatically find a mutually agreeable solution, rather than escalating the situation. With the right timing, you’ll get your point across without starting a noise war.

5. Document the noise

If simply talking to your neighbors doesn’t adequately resolve the constant stomping, take it up a notch by documenting the noise.

I suggest keeping a detailed log of the pattern of disruptive stomping. Note the exact dates, times, duration, and severity of the noise in a journal. Track how often it occurs and record audio or video if possible.

Read more: How to Record My Upstairs Neighbor Stomping (13 Tips)

This evidence will be invaluable if you need to approach your landlord, file a formal noise complaint or take legal action down the road. But it can also help in your discussions with neighbors. Hard data is more convincing than generalized complaints when trying to demonstrate the extent of the issue.

Just be sure to stick to the noise-related facts. Emotional venting may feel justified but could weaken your position and escalate tensions. The documentation should highlight the noise disturbance itself.

6. Use a sound level meter

For further documentation, if the stomping persists unrelentingly, use a sound level meter. This device precisely measures decibel readings in your unit when disruptive noises occur.

The quantitative data provides concrete proof of excessive noise levels that exceed local ordinances. I’d suggest you record dB readings over 70 whenever your neighbors stomp at night – above the limit of 60 dB allowed during sleeping hours.

The detailed documentation strengthened my case when filing an official noise complaint with my landlord and the police. My neighbors couldn’t dismiss it as mere subjective whining.

A sound meter offers an objective way to demonstrate the extent of the noise issue. The hard evidence lends credibility if you need to take legal action to resolve untenable stomping.

7. Offer noise reduction solutions

When appealing to your neighbors about the constant stomping noise, try proposing some specific solutions too. This shows you’re interested in working together constructively to resolve the issue.

Here are some simple noise reduction suggestions you could offer:

  • Take off hard-soled shoes and wear slippers at night
  • Place area rugs or carpets to soften footsteps
  • Rearrange furniture to avoid noise transfer spots
  • Walk more lightly and minimize stomping, especially late at night

Approaching the conversation with practical solutions takes it from being just a complaint to a collaborative problem-solving discussion. Your neighbors may be more receptive when they see you’re invested in finding an answer together.

Offering constructive ideas also gives them tangible ways to mitigate the noise right away. With a bit of compromise on both sides, you can jointly figure out ways to reduce the disruption.

8. Use earplugs

If your upstairs neighbors are resistant to compromise, you may have to take matters into your own hands. A simple solution is to wear earplugs at night to muffle their stomping.

I started using soft foam earplugs designed for sleeping. They blocked enough noise for me to finally get some decent rest despite the clamor from upstairs.

Just be sure to still use alarm clocks or vibrating wristbands so you don’t sleep through important wake-up times. But for reducing disruptive noises like stomping, earplugs can make a significant difference. They provide an easy, inexpensive way to restore peace and quiet on your own terms.

I recommend keeping a supply on your nightstand for those nights when the elephants upstairs are particularly lively. They won’t solve the root of the noise problem, but earplugs can help you survive it with your sanity intact.

9. Try a white noise machine

Another option for drowning out neighbors’ noisy stomping is using a white noise machine. The steady, soothing sounds they produce can mask unwanted disturbances like banging and thudding from upstairs.

I recommend buying a small white noise generator and keeping it on your nightstand. The constant whirring helps camouflage the stomping, allowing you to fall asleep more easily.

You can also use box fans, sound conditioners, or white noise apps on your phone or tablet. Experiment to find the tone and volume that best mutes the stomps and thumps without being too loud itself.

Like earplugs, it’s not a complete solution. But white noise is an easy way to get relief from your neighbors’ disruptions so you can finally get some restful shuteye.

10. Install a ceiling vibrator

Instead of banging on your ceiling whenever the stomping upstairs gets intolerable, install a ceiling vibrator. This handy device attaches to your ceiling and vibrates.

The vibrations serve as a tactful alert to noisy upstairs neighbors that their footsteps are exceedingly loud and disruptive. It saves you from having to manually bang the ceiling each time the stomping gets out of hand.

Though not cheap, a ceiling vibrator provides a diplomatic way to send a signal about excessive noise without confrontation. For frequent, severe stompers, this gadget can help cue them to walk more considerately before they completely lose sleep.

11. Decouple the ceiling

If no amount of noise masking or documentation helps with persistent stompers, consider decoupling your ceiling. This involves installing a new ceiling that isolates your living space from the noises above.

A professional will hang a new ceiling using acoustic isolation clips or channels that prevent the transfer of vibrations from footsteps upstairs. Noise gets blocked instead of reverberating into your unit.

At around $800 – 2,000, decoupling is pricey and messy. But for serial stomping offenders, it may provide your best shot at uninterrupted sleep.

I didn’t opt for a full decoupled ceiling, but you should. You’ll notice a big difference in reducing the impact directly above my bed.

For extreme cases, a decoupled ceiling offers a structural solution to fundamentally block disruptive noise infiltration. The investment may pay off for your sanity.

12. Contact the landlord

If upstairs stomping neighbors ignore all appeals for quieter walking, get in touch with your landlord or building manager.

Politely explain the frequent, disruptive noise that is severely impacting your sleep and quality of life. Provide documentation like your noise log and audio/video recordings.

Request that they intervene and enforce noise regulations on your behalf with the problematic tenants upstairs. Most landlords want to avoid noise complaints, so they have an incentive to rectify the issue.

I contacted my property manager after other methods failed. They sent a formal notice to my neighbors about the excessive noise reports. This landlord pressure finally convinced my upstairs stompers to walk more lightly at night.

Getting management involved can be an effective way to motivate noise reduction if direct appeals to neighbors fail. The threat of eviction or fines from above often succeeds when requests from next door don’t.

13. File a noise complaint

If upstairs stomping continues unabated despite complaints to neighbors and the landlord, you may need to file a formal noise disturbance report with the police.

Call the non-emergency number and explain the frequent, excessive noise at night that is depriving you of sleep. Note specific times and durations of the most egregious stomping.

Police may visit the tenants upstairs and issue warnings or citations if the noise exceeds local decibel limits, especially during overnight hours. Fines or criminal charges are the last resort.

Before involving the authorities, I always tried resolving things directly first. But some obstinate neighbors will leave you with no choice. The police noise complaints will finally put an end to the intolerable stomping sessions.

Use this measure judiciously if nothing else succeeds. While police intervention can be effective, it likely damages neighborly goodwill. Reserve as a last stand only after reasonable efforts fail.

14. File a lawsuit

In rare, extreme cases of untenable stomping, you may need to initiate legal action as a last resort. This involves filing a lawsuit against the neighbor for excessive noise nuisance.

I recommend this only after exhausting all other methods. Lawsuits can be time-consuming and expensive. Plus they permanently destroy neighborly relations.

But if disturbances persist at outrageous levels that tangibly impact your health and home value, a lawsuit may be justified. Consult an attorney to examine your options.

You’ll need extensive documentation of exact dates, times, decibel readings, and duration of the noise, plus evidence of tangible harm.

If successful, a judge may order penalties, noise reduction accommodations, or even eviction of the offending tenant. But expect an ugly fight – lawsuits turn neighbors into enemies fast.

15. Move out

If ceaseless stomping above persists despite your best efforts, moving may be the only option left. As frustrating as it is to be driven out by inconsiderate neighbors, sometimes a fresh start is needed.

Before considering this drastic step, be sure you’ve made reasonable efforts to resolve the noise problem directly with your neighbors and landlord.

If you rent, check your lease terms for early termination fees or conditions related to noise disturbances. You may have grounds to break the lease or transfer units without penalty.

As a last resort for a truly unlivable situation, a new home elsewhere may bring the peace and quiet relief you’ve been craving.

For your sanity, don’t prolong the agony interminably – know when it’s time to walk away. Let unrepentant stompers rattle an empty unit, while you finally sleep soundly.


Having upstairs neighbors stomping around at all hours can drive you to wit’s end. I’ve certainly been there! But before you completely lose sleep and sanity, try some of the techniques I’ve outlined here.

Start with diplomatic approaches like having a friendly conversation or leaving a polite note. If that fails, move to noise-masking solutions like earplugs or white noise machines.

Document the disturbances and get your landlord involved if needed. Only as a last option should you resort to filing neighbor noise complaints or lawsuits.

And know when it’s time to just walk away rather than enduring ceaseless torment. With some patience and creativity, you can find a way to muffle the stomping and finally get some peaceful shut-eye.

Let me know in the comments what strategies have worked best for you in dealing with noisy neighbors overhead! Here’s to a good night’s sleep.

Zebedee Nambaleo
Zebedee Nambaleo

Zebedee is the founder of RealEstate Ke. He creates content by carefully examining and analyzing the real estate market, home improvement resources, and government data. His analysis is based on the principle of supplying high-quality, relevant, and in-depth information to his audience. By evaluating the current conditions and predicting future trends, he provides his audience with invaluable insights that allow them to make better decisions.