Thursday, March 24, 2011

How to make your future neighbors think you are a freak

Yellow arrow is maybe our place. Red arrows denote
neighbors who may now be praying we don't move in. 
What are Carolyn and Mister Crane doing? Having our last fire, not only of the season, because this is the last of the wood and hopefully the last of the cold and snow, but also because we have put an offer in on a condo!! And it was accepted!

We are so excited. While it has no fireplace, and is in a less glorious section of town, we think it is lovely and we also suspect there will be more people like us living around there. Also, we will save money and there are many nearby coffeeshops.

Now we have the inspection period where we will have it inspected. Which brings me to a little story...

The one that we almost bought
There was this condo we almost bought. OMG, it was a bit more money, but bigger and so lovely, and we were up there with our realtor and every room was more magical than the last. We were like, this is perfect perfect!

Then, the downstairs neighbor turned on their TV. And it was SO loud. I mean, they were obnoxious to have it so loud, but it became clear that the floors in this perfect place were not that thick, and that any TV noise would carry pretty well. We were like, omg, thank you for turning on your TV.

Now Mark and I have become totally focused on the potential of noise. We are both writers who do lots of work at home, and while we don't need library silence, we don't want to listen to Maury Povich all day.

So like the freaks we are, we went over there and dropped a note in the analogous condo across the hall's mailbox asking for their assessment of how well the noise carries up on their side from the floor below them. And then we dropped a note in the unit below us to ask if, oh, one of these days during our inspection period, we could go over and stand in the unit we might buy, and they play their TV or stereo and we can see if it really carries.

I mean, there are other things we have to check out with our inspector, but this noise thing has seized our imaginations. How thick are the floors between these units? Will we be driven crazy by noise? Will our concentration be totally destroyed? Will I lose my ability to write novels and be found wandering Death Valley in a Panda suit this time next year? But we didn't put that in the note.

Do you think our potential new neighbors will think we're freaks?

Mark read an article the other day that boiled down the difference between rich and poor, in part, to the ability to have quiet around you. That the poorer you are, the noisier your environment is. And the richer you are, the more you can control your environment. I thought that was so fascinating.

Since we fall between those two extremes, neither rich nor poor, I think we rely partly on luck and partly on being careful. And notes in future neighbor's mailboxes. eep. 


B.E. Sanderson said...

That sounds like an awesome idea. I wish I'd thought of it for some of the places I've lived. I can handle some noise - unless it's someone else's music. For some reason, that drives me nuts.

Good luck and I hope you hear back from your potential neighbors.

Patti (Book Addict) said...

That's a great idea - depending on if the sound carries or not your potential neighbors might wish they'd thought of it!

Good luck and I hope your (potential) new neighbors are fun.

Carolyn Crane said...

B.E. Thanks! and right, I have no problem with barking dogs or laughing, etc, but loud music and TV drive me batty!

Patti: Oh, good point - if the floors are really thin, they may not think we're so freaky at all.

Chris said...

You know the floors in my place are like tissue paper - noise-conducting tissue paper at that!

Congrats on the offer being accepted and good luck on the noise thing!!

Hmm. My veri word is nouse. Almost, but not quite, noise.

Carolyn Crane said...

Chris! No! That verification word is a terrible sign! Gah, I know you have that problem. Uh, that is the thing with a condo, once you're in, you're a bit stuck.

Chris said...

When I moved in, a nice little old lady lived downstairs!

Brenda Hyde said...

Maybe they will think your freaks but who cares because damn, that was such a good idea. I can tell you horror stories of loud neighbors. The worst was a long time ago when I was with my ex. and we were no longer ahem...intimate. Things were pretty bad, and almost every freaking night the guy living upstairs was having sex. Loudly. Very loudly, as in I'd cover my head with a pillow and could still hear him. Talk about horrible. Someone else was not only getting some when I WASN'T but he was disturbing my sleep. No fun.

Probably too much info. but I thought you'd get a kick out of it. I love the house-- and hope the neighbors give you good reports!

Tez Miller said...

What's a condo? I'm thinking unit/flat/apartment. I need a larger vocabulary. And larger knowledge. I can is teh stoopid, y'all! ;-)

orannia said...

Does it matter if your potential neighbours think you are freaks? *grin*

I think it's a fantastic idea. If quiet is what you need, then it's definitely something that should be on your list of requirements :)

And good luck!

@Tex - I had to Wiki 'condo' as we don't have them here :)

Bronwyn Green said...

Thank goodness the person in the first one turned on the TV. I can't stand listening to the TV in my own house if it's something I'm not watching. I can't imagine listening to it through the floor!

Good luck with the move and hopefully your new neighbors are awesome! :)

Carolyn Crane said...

Chris: Gah. Maybe one will move in again...

Brenda: That would be awful! I might not be so focused on music if I had that experience.

Tez: It's an apartment that you buy. What do you call it there?

Orannia:LOL. Thank goodness for wikipedia!

Bron: Thanks! Yes, I really don't like it anywhere.

Hilcia said...

CJ, better safe than sorry! I've been in apartments like that and it's not fun! You don't want to hear your neighbor... *coughflushcough* It's not fun!

I live in an older structure--nice thick walls AND floors. *g*

Good luck with your condo hunting and your neighbors!

Nicola O. said...

So, if you DON'T have beautiful hardwood floors in your condo you can add some noiseproofing either with premium carpet pads or you can get really hardcore and lay down a sound barrier under whatever your finished floor is.

If you DO have beautiful hardwood floors then you're looking at some $$ to pull it up and lay down the sound barrier. But it is an option if you looooove a place and also neeeeeeed quiet. Also supports the theory that money can buy quiet. ;-)

Julie said...

I'd like to think that they don't think you're crazy...only cautious and smart!
Your little story reminds me of when Jason and I were looking for a house. We saw one that he LOVED. It had a pool. The house could have been made out of grass and, since it had a pool, Jason would have liked it. But that's a whole other story...
So we're in this house, I'm telling the Agent "I don't know..." and Jason is giving me the "are you crazy" look when suddenly, the whole house started shaking. I mean earthquake shaking. It seems that the train that passes through my little village 12 times a day passes RIGHT in front of that house. Needless to say, Jason suddenly didn't enjoy that house so much and we were very thankful for that train that day. lol

orannia said...

I hope the house hunting is going well?