A STUDY carried out by mortgage broker Ocean Finance has found that 38% of UK residents say they no longer feel safe in their own homes, or struggle to sleep because of stress caused by their neighbours. The study also shows that a further 24% want to move to a new area to escape the problem.

By region London has the highest number of incidents, with a staggering 52% of those questioned saying that during the past year they have experienced neighbour annoyances. Residents from Wales are least likely to encounter annoyances caused by neighbours.

Those living in Northern Ireland, and the North-West and South-West of England were most likely to experience a neighbour who uses intimidating or threatening behaviour, while those from the North-East of England are least likely to experience it.

Spokesperson Gareth Shitlon, from Ocean Finance says: “The research highlights the devastating impact that problem neighbours can have on the lives of people in our communities. Loud noise, dumped rubbish, shabby houses, even threats and abuse are causing misery for millions of people who live in fear.”

Worryingly seven million UK residents, admitted that they do not know who to contact to resolve the issues. Overwhelmingly 57% of people who have been affected tackle the problem directly and only 16% would contact the police or local council.

If you are struggling with any of these issues or know anybody who is, the government has recommended you take the following steps:

1. Speak to your neighbour

2. If your neighbour is a tenant, contact their landlord

3. Use a mediation service

4. Complain to the council

5. Call the police

6. Take legal action

By Anna Gowdy

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