Whether it’s squealing garbage trucks, blaring speakers from the neighbors or the general buzz of foot traffic outside your window, the noise of apartment living can be draining. If you find that all the hubbub is making life at home maddening, you’re not alone. For many apartment dwellers, unwanted noise is a fact of life that can seem unavoidable. But there are a few things you can do to dampen the noise and make your home the soothing oasis you deserve.
Go Rug Shopping
Because noise naturally reverberates off hard surfaces, your biggest enemy when it comes to amplifying sound in your apartment is your floors. Those hardwood floors were probably a real selling point when you first viewed the apartment, but now they’re your worst nightmare. If your floors aren’t carpeted, I suggest you accessorize with plush rugs. Ikea has many affordable options, and places like Design Manitoba might have something a bit more special. Add a thick rug pad underneath to match and quiet things down even further.
Weatherproof Your Front Door
If hallway traffic is your problem, this is a great solution. Place high-quality weather-stripping between the door and the door frame to create a seal when the door of closed. I recommend a rubber weather-strip rather than a foam or vinyl. Rubber is more cost effective and will last longer.
To soundproof your windows, use cellular shades or curtains. The fabric will help to dampen outside noise. While shades are fashionable, they are often transparent to allow light to enter the room—which means they won’t block much noise, either
Divide Your Space:
If you have a wide–open loft space, try breaking up the room by hanging a curtain and creating two rooms out of one. It not only adds privacy to your space but absorbs the sound waves—decreasing annoying noises!
Reduce Reflected Noise
Noise reflects off hard surfaces like wall and ceilings, adding to the overall noise level inside a room.Lowering your ceiling is a great way to reduce reflected noise. An easy way to do this is to install standard soundproofing panels. You can buy foam panels in all colours on Amazon for as low as $14. If you’re afraid foam panels will ruin the aesthetic of your room, bed canopies and hanging textiles canabsorb sound, too.
Muffle Neighbour Noise
Beef up thin wallsto muffle noise from the apartment next door. Large bookcases—a whole wall of them, if you can swing it—are a great way to do this. The shelf itself will block noise, and bulky books make wonderful sound insulation. If you are comfortable doing so, ask your neighborsto do the same!
If your biggest complaint is nighttime noise, awhite noise machine is a simple fix. By playing a non-distracting form of noise, white noise machines divert your ears by masking disruptive noise sources. You can buy white noise machines at many price points, so they fit most budgets.
As Usual, Plants Save the Day
On a smaller scale, plants can absorb and deflect noise. If you want to use plants to reduce noise, don’t be afraid to buy a few more than you first planned. Look for a variety of plants in a variety of heights and sizes.More plants mean more surface area to help reduce noise. Ferns, baby’s tears, peace lilies, rubber plants, money trees and fiddle leaf figs can all help reduce noise.