“Unbearable” noise

Question from Angela updated on 30th October 2014:

I am a tenant and a year into a two-year, fixed-term tenancy in a ground floor apartment at $850 per week. I have on many occasions contacted the landlord about noise coming from the upstairs apartment. It is not party noise but I can hear every footstep which never ceases, even at 10pm. I am now getting noise from the apartment to the side of mine. The upstairs neighbours have been asked to have consideration for those below but they are just plain rude and don't speak to me anymore. Can I end my fixed-term tenancy? It has become unbearable.

Our expert Krister Samuel responded:

A fixed-term tenancy cannot be ended before the term is complete unless there is agreement by both parties or a Tenancy Tribunal order. However, you may find in the small print of your tenancy agreement a clause allowing the assignment of the tenancy, a lot do, so you never know your luck. Your building should have rules in place to ensure all occupants have quiet enjoyment. Many blocks can financially penalise tenants for breaking these rules. So perhaps investigate this? Here is something else to consider though, at the moment it is cheaper to own an apartment rather than to rent one. If you manage to extricate yourself from your tenancy then feel free to call me and I'll take you on a tour of the quietest residential pockets in the central city.

Krister is ranked in the top 1% of all real estate agents nationwide and specialises in the high yielding Auckland apartment market. He is happy to share insights and information on any aspect from an extensive knowledge base built up over a decade.

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