Being a good neighbor is pretty straightforward. Casual hello when you see each other, being helpful if they ask for help, and not being too loud late at night. Not every neighbor makes it easy, though, especially when they don't try to be a good neighbor.
I live in an 80s-style duplex building made of concrete cinder block bricks and moved here in mid-2016. My neighbor has a mirror of my apartment; they are both two levels with a gallery staircase in the middle; I love it here so much.
But my neighbor, oh my God. We used to get along alright, mostly because I like to keep the peace. But he loves having every door and window of his home open, and I live in a part of the world that is hot and humid for about 3/4 of the year. We also live right by a busy road.
This wouldn't be that much of an issue, but his music and movies have to compete with the outside noise and the noise from his fans - he refuses to use his air conditioner. Even at low levels, the result is a booming bass in some of my rooms due to the resonance.
It drives me crazy, and this could happen at any time of the day or night. I was losing sleep, and my mind and at my wit's end. We finally well and truly fell out about a year ago. I had tried asking, begging, pleading, passive aggression, and every avenue had been exhausted.
I convinced him to come over to my house and listen so he could hear what I was talking about and thought surely he would realize that he needed to stop or at least seriously adjust his sound settings. He said there was absolutely nothing wrong, and so I decided to change tack and increase the levels of my system - much better than his - to roughly where his was, and we went there and again, he said there was nothing wrong and that he wasn't going to change anything.
I was told that my sound couldn't be heard at his place and that I could leave the levels as they were and would have to live with whatever sound came out of his home. He got with this lady he had been talking to, and it's an absurd and toxic relationship but not my problem, and I figured at least he wasn't playing sound that boomed through my bedroom in the middle of the night.
Anyway, cut to a few months ago. I noticed he had some old baby stuff on his patio that looked like it was bought from a garage sale 30 years ago, and then in the following months, I saw his girlfriend with a definite baby bump. By now, I bet you can see where this is going, and so could I by that point, assuming things wouldn't change, and I knew they wouldn't.
This past month my neighbor and his girlfriend have welcomed an adorable little screaming baby, which I can't hear from my place at all, thankfully! But, they can hear sound coming from my home and told me as much when they knocked this week, and I greeted them with a big smile and congratulations.
They told me they were getting no sleep and were at their wit's end. They asked, begged, and pleaded with me to turn my sound system down, and I reminded my neighbor that my sound couldn't be heard from their house and that even if they could hear my sound, they could live with it. I might reduce the settings slightly once I learn a lesson.
The internet hates a bad neighbor.
We had a neighbor who lived below me in an apartment complex. He would play loud music with heavy bass whenever he was home. We talked to him a few times, and he agreed not to play them after 9 pm, so our kids could sleep. But he won't stop them during the daytime. The weekends are the worst because he would start before noon and go to 9 pm.
I'm not against bassy music per SE. But the way sound travels is that higher frequencies are attenuated by the floor between us, so all we hear are the thumps. No melody, no lyrics, just monotonic thumps. It got so bad that we had to leave the house every weekend.
I was into HIFI back then. I had a good subwoofer as part of my setup. But I put the system in my loft to avoid annoying the neighbors. Plus, I don't play loud music for long periods.
After all diplomatic attempts had failed, I moved the subwoofer (only the subwoofer) to the middle of the floor, directly above his living room. I hooked it up to an mp3 player with a 3.5mm to RCA splitter and started playing a bass-heavy playlist on a loop. The subwoofer naturally filtered out the higher frequencies. So my playlist becomes a series of monotonic thumps.
I still remember it clearly. It was a Saturday morning; the neighbor was home playing music like always. He also had visitors arriving as we left.
We didn't come home until 8 pm. Our thumping tracks were still playing. But the downstairs neighbor's music is silent. After that, he still played loud bassy music occasionally but never did it all day long again.
They said they couldn't hear the noise from your place. They can't go back now.
No. Don’t change anything. Your neighbors have set the bar to ‘We’ll be as loud as we like. F*ck you.' These people will never learn. As soon as their sweet little baby becomes a noisy toddler, you will return to square one.
Continue your Cold War with your neighbor, OP.