August 3rd
Uncategorized

Sound Proofing (Part II) – Does It Add Value?

This is the second post in a series about sound proofing. Read the first post here. Part of city living is dealing with city noise. Our properties sit closer to curbs, streets, public transportation, restaurants, stores, and even our neighbors. If we choose an urban lifestyle we must get comfortable with exterior city noise. However, […]

This is the second post in a series about sound proofing. Read the first post here.

Part of city living is dealing with city noise. Our properties sit closer to curbs, streets, public transportation, restaurants, stores, and even our neighbors. If we choose an urban lifestyle we must get comfortable with exterior city noise. However, we might never get comfortable with interior noise from our neighbors. There is airborne noise such as voices, cell phones, music, TV or a baby crying. Also, there is impact noise such as footsteps, toddlers running or throwing a toy on the ground, or dropping a cooking utensil. Read more about types of noise.

I will admit that I am sensitive to both exterior and interior noises, so I don’t take noise issues lightly. I address them with my clients, particularly potential buyers. Are you a light sleeper? Are you aware there is a fire station around the corner? Have you considered your neighbors upstairs, or even downstairs for that matter?

I suggest to my clients that we look at the property not just at a Sunday open house. Let’s schedule a showing in the evening or during the workweek so we get an idea of what type of noise we will potentially hear during different times of the day.

I am not a sound proof expert, nor am I a licensed contractor, but if you have purchased an uninsulated home there are some quick fixes — and a few real fixes:

  • Real estate agents love to market hardwood floors because they are a selling feature. However, carpet does wonders when it comes to impact noise or footfall. Wall-to-wall carpet with a heavy-duty pad underneath is the best option, but even a full hallway runner and oversized rug is better than hardwood floors. Sellers, it is easy and inexpensive to rip out carpet when you are ready to sell your home.
  • For airborne noise, sound proofing your ceilings, floors, or walls is an option, but an expensive one. If you consider this route, I would first consult with Charles M. Salter Associates. CSA will come to your home to measure the amount of noise, figure out what type of noise really bothers you and provide you with sound proof options.

I have been involved with sound proof projects, and when the project is done right it can significantly reduce the amount of noise. But I am not sure if you can put a value on sound proofing — it is not a selling feature. Privacy does not come with a price tag.


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