By Leo Clarke, Consultant
Excessive and nuisance noise can have a significant impact on your living environment and your wellbeing. Noise-proofing can help to reduce the severity of nearby traffic noise, noisy neighbours, construction work, or night-time city noise. It’s becoming more important than ever before to protect yourself against excess noise. Here are three reasons why you should prioritise noise-proofing your home.
1. Excessive noise exposure is detrimental to health
According to the World Health Organisation, over a 24-hour period we should not be exposed to more than 53 decibels. Unfortunately, 48% of adults in Europe are regularly exposed to noise that exceeds these limits. Loud noise exposure runs the risk of causing physical damage to the ears which can lead to permanent hearing loss. Persistent excess noise or nuisance noise can contribute to mental health problems like stress, anxiety, and depression. By noise-proofing your home, you can help to protect your physical health and emotional wellbeing from the negative impact of nuisance noise.
2. Noise-proofing can protect you against nuisance noise complaints
When you strive to keep noise from entering your home, you have the added benefit of reducing the amount of noise that escapes from your home. This is particularly important if you conduct a noisy job or hobby from home on a regular basis, such as playing a musical instrument or using electrical tools. If your neighbours consider the noise from your home to be a nuisance, they can report the problem to the police and to local authorities.
Local authorities can issue warnings and fines under Antisocial Behaviour Laws if you don’t rectify nuisance noise, and in worse case scenarios you could be prosecuted. If you know that you create loud noise on a regular basis, it’s helpful to restrict it to one room in your house that you can thoroughly soundproof.
3. Building Standards demand adequate noise insulation
Since noise pollution can be so detrimental to health and wellbeing, the government is working hard to ensure that people are protected against it. Scottish Building Standards have extensive requirements related to noise insulation for new constructions. These standards also apply when making renovations to an existing building, including minor works that don’t require building warrants such as kitchen or bathroom renovations.
Noise-proofing your home, particularly as part of renovations, might be essential for adhering to the law and protecting the value of your property if you choose to sell it in future. When you noise-proof your home to exceed building standards, you could even add value to your property as the peace and quiet it provides appeals to buyers conscious of noise pollution.
Prioritise noise-proofing in your property
Now you know why noise-proofing is so important, you can prioritise making changes to your property to better insulate it against outside noise. From replacing your flooring to installing heavy curtains on your windows, there are many ways to noise-proof your home and minimise the harmful impact of excess noise.