Roommate Rehab: Managing Loud Roommates

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Loud roommates can make enjoying your apartment virtually impossible. Whether they play loud music, crank the TV way up or just shout too often, noisy roommates can make sleeping, studying, working and just relaxing at home a pain. Still, an angry confrontation can make everything worse, so learn the best ways to manage boisterous roommates.

Start By Asking Nicely

Perhaps your loud roommates aren’t aware that they’re overly loud. Take a deep breath and stay calm when you talk to your roommates about the issue. Don’t accuse your roommates of having a problem, but tell them that since you share such a small space, noise of a high volume remains too loud to ignore from room to room throughout the apartment. Ask if they could restrict the noise to a level where it is easily heard or if they can use headphones (especially during certain established hours when you need to relax, work and/or sleep in peace without distractions). Your roommates have the right to enjoy themselves at home, too, so you both should make compromises. Agree to Scheduled “Quiet” Time If your roommates can’t live without their loud music or tend to forget to use their “indoor voices” even after you remind them, ask if you can agree to a few hours of quiet time in the evening so you can get work done or relax. Your roommates can make special effort not to be loud during this time period or perhaps they can leave the apartment and enjoy a night out on the town. You should also agree to no loud music after a “bed time,” especially if you’ve got work or school the next day.

Consider Soundproofing Solutions

So long as they’re not disturbing the neighbors, you need to let your loud roommates enjoy their music, TV, games or whatever they’re doing for some hours each evening, too. You can either leave during their scheduled “loud” time or you can work on soundproofing your own small space with one or more of the following solutions:

  • Ear plugs – Noise reduction ear plugs can soften the noises around you without making it impossible for you to hear. Just be sure if you sleep with them in that you can still hear alarm clocks and fire alarms.
  • Headphones – Put on your headphones and listen to soft music or white noise when you just want to drown out your loud roommates or plug your headphones into your laptop or TV if you’re trying to watch a show or movie. You may still hear your roommates’ noise in the background, but it should be less obtrusive. (Don’t be tempted to completely drown out the noise by putting the headphones’ volume up too loud, as you can damage your hearing.)
  • Soundproofing curtains – These versatile sheets can be draped virtually anywhere to dampen noises coming in any direction. You may consider hanging one of these curtains over your door or wall when your roommates’ noise is distracting you.

Loud roommates can be annoying, but if you get along with them, you can establish a bit of give and take when it comes to enjoying your small space together. If your roommates prove uncooperative even when you’re willing to compromise, it may be time to consider moving out.

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