When walls speak and ceilings squeak

July 10, 2011 16:29

"When walls speak and ceilings squeak" by guest blogger Wade Nkrumah

Condominium living is not for the quiet-as-a-church mouse set.
That’s because, in most cases, the soundproof condominium has not been built.
At some point – maybe with great frequency, even – you will hear your neighbors, whether they live above, below or next to you.
It might be faint, muffled voices of conversation; or not so subtle sounds of more interesting activity.
It could be thumping bass lines or percussion from stereo speakers. Maybe it’s a bump out of the blue of a slammed drawer to built-in desk or cabinets, or a too-free sliding closet door panel.
These unwelcome intrusions will happen no matter assurances to the contrary from developers and real estate or sales agents. Their mantra: new construction condominium insulation soundproofing nearly is foolproof. They often support their claim by referring to a one-inch space they say deadens (their common phrase) noise transfer between double-ply drywall of adjacent condominiums.
Don’t believe the hype.
And, needless to say, the older the building, especially in the case of conversions, the greater the chance your walls will talk and your ceiling will squawk.
Just be aware: While the nostalgic charm has been preserved in the 1920s-era building fancifully updated into a modern day apartment-to-condominium conversion, the space likely comes with the soundproofing shortcomings of the bygone era.
And yes, you’ll know it when your walls and ceiling start quaking to the sometimes not-so-gentle rumble of the washer going into it’s 5- to 10-minute spin cycle in the condominium above or next-door.
Such intrusions, the stuff of daily condominium living, could be white noise for some; minor inconveniences for another; or major nuisances for others.
It’s one of the tradeoffs of not having to rush home from work to mow the overgrown lawn before those threatening rain clouds burst open and leave too damp to mow for another two days already-too-high grass.
The important thing: know what you’re getting into.
That way, when the inevitable bump in the night occurs, you won’t be startled into the harsh realities of your new surroundings.
Instead, you’ll simply turn over and resume pleasant dreams of your newfound simpler home life.

Follow this link to read the whole story about Living In Portland Condos