Have you ever heard your neighbors when you didn't want to? Maybe they're in their yard or even in their home and the sounds bleed through into your house. For some homeowners stopping the outside noise from coming in is quite the challenge.
"We've been here 10 years and it's been noisy," says homeowner, Bob Niles.
Bob and his wife Kay live in a detached home in San Clemente, CA.
"Our houses are kind of small and the yards are real close," says Niles.
When the couple added on a room and widened their home it brought them even closer to the neighbor's yard. They knew that stopping the noise would become even more difficult. So they looked for a way to insulate their home from the outside sounds.
The Niles found a product called SoundStop.
"You just tack it up, you don't even know it's there ... It just knocks down all the noise there, spa noise, anybody out there in the yard ... We don't hear a thing," says Niles.
If finding a little peace and quiet in your home is difficult, then you may want to look into the earth-friendly fiberboard product made of 97 percent recycled materials.
"It's a very effective sound deadening product," says Susan Ross, spokesperson for Knight-Celotex, the makers of SoundStop.
SoundStop can either be built into the home at the time of construction or retrofitted to cover existing walls from floor to ceiling or the entire ceiling if necessary to prevent sound from seeping through. Approximately only an inch-and-a-quarter will be lost from the ceiling or walls because the application is being layered over the existing surfaces. The cost ranges from $2-$5 a square foot and can take as little as a couple of days to complete.
"Most of the builders build [homes] like cardboard, and they don't do a lot [to stop] sound transfer," says Mike Rath, owner of Bay Area Acoustic Ceilings.
Rath says he frequently gets calls from homeowners, living in condos or retrofitted lofts, who are complaining about their noisy neighbors.
"People can hear pots and pans clanking, babies crying, the phone ringing -- that kind of thing. You do that application of SoundStop and you will pretty much eliminate all of the noises," explains Rath.
The higher-sounding noises are going to be almost completely eliminated. "The lower, denser noises such as footsteps and that kind of thing -- let's say a bass drum beating -- are going to be significantly muffled," says Rath.
Often a homeowner will spend thousands of dollars upgrading the house. But if you can hear the next-door neighbors while inside your home, even the fancy upgrades won't necessarily bring top dollar when it comes time to sell.
"You can retrofit with beautiful finishes, kitchen finishes, all those things that make a place beautiful and they enhance the quality of your life, but if it's noisy and you hear your neighbors, it doesn't matter if you have a gorgeous kitchen," says Ross.
The product can be found at Home Depot or Lowe's. Check with the stores and local contractors for installation.
Leaving the noise outside will help create a serene environment inside your home.