Noise between Neighbors
Residents in community associations do not have the right to make an unlimited amount of noise. There are nuisance provisions found in nearly all CC&Rs that provide associations the right to fine owners and, if necessary, go into court for an order against the offending party.
Notwithstanding that owners have the reasonable right to quiet enjoyment of their property, it does not mean they have the right to a noise-free environment. To constitute a nuisance, the noise must be such that it causes an unreasonable disturbance or annoyance. It cannot be trivial. Since a nuisance is largely subjective, associations are not obligated to become involved in disputes where the noise causes mere inconvenience. If, in the board's opinion, a nuisance exists, it may send a cease and desist letter or, following a noticed hearing, it may impose a fine, suspend privileges, and/or take legal action to the abate the nuisance.
Concerning hardwood or tile floors, it is best to have an objective standard set forth in the association's rules or CC&Rs. This will minimize the chance of a lawsuit.
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