Everyone has the right to the undisturbed use and enjoyment of their own property as long as they comply with relevant legislation. However, with homes being built closer to each other in recent years, it has become increasingly challenging to balance the rights of all parties.
The Environment Conservation Act and municipal Noise Control Regulations distinguish between two illegal noise activities:
1. a “disturbing noise” which is a scientifically measured noise (in decibels); and
2. a “noise nuisance” which is a noise that subjectively disturbs or impairs one’s convenience or peace.
Should you and your neighbour be unable to amicably settle your noise dispute, you may lodge a complaint with your Local Authority who are authorised to send out a Noise Control Unit to investigate; alternatively you can apply to court for an interdict or claim damages suffered.
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