Thursday, March 12, 2009

Another Unreasonable Swiss Complaint Letter

This is our second complaint letter from our neighbor downstairs. It is really making me upset and angry. I know I should just shrug it off and ignore them, but I can't help feel like I should do something.

This one says:

We were disturbed at 11:20, 11:26 and midnight
it's not possible
you have to respect the neighbors
the next time we're going straight to the regie
thanks for your understanding


1. We do not have a regie or a lease with a regie. Yes, a regie does manage our building but we are directly leasing from the owner. We do not pay our rent to a regie and we have never ever talked to the regie.

2. We are not being loud. Not at all. This is a TOTAL LIE and it really makes me mad when people lie about you. I'm SO SORRY I stay up past 10 PM, I'm SO SORRY that we need to walk to the bathroom from the living room. I am so sorry we heaven forbid, talk to each other. (If you can't tell - I'm being ultra sarcastic. Not normally my way of dealing with things, but I'm pissed)

3. Midnight? Midnight! We were in bed watching TV on our computer falling asleep and chatting with each other. Why use specific times when it is a lie? ARGH!!!!!! You should only be specific when you have exact facts. Otherwise, you set yourself up to being a fool.

4. We live in a 7 story apartment building. GET USED TO IT.

So what would happen if they do go to the regie? Complaint letter to our owner? Who knows. Any advice anyone?


Tina,  March 12, 2009 at 10:59 AM  

Not to be indelicate, but maybe they are talking about you flushing the toilet? In Germany we can't flush after 10 pm, as to not disturb the neighbors.

Amanda March 12, 2009 at 11:00 AM  

I wonder if you should write them a polite reply. Explain that there must be some misunderstanding, as you are in bed during those hours. So sorry you are having such bad luck with the neighbors!

The Bowers! March 12, 2009 at 8:22 PM  

Ooooh...that would make me mad (and frustrated since you are clearly trying to be quiet).

I agree with the comment above from Amanda. Is there someone at Robby's lab that can help you write a letter? Or John or Steph?

Young Traveler March 13, 2009 at 12:00 PM  

I second what Tina said. It's the same in my building.

Reply and kill them with kindness.

The Swiss like polite people.

Chin up! Honestly, who wants to flush in the middle of the night anyway?

steph.kelley March 13, 2009 at 6:36 PM  

Agreed with Amanda and Julie: leave them a super-duper-nice note in return. I'm trying to give them the benefit of the doubt — are they possibly confusing your "noise" with another neighbor's noise? I think it's best to assume so until...something. :P Sorry for you and Rob! xoxo

Z March 15, 2009 at 8:26 AM  

I second Steph's comment. I wonder how the woman is sure you're the source of whatever noise she might be hearing. Our building is quite decently sound proofed and we barely hear our neighbors and when we do, it's not really possible to localize it so well. Yesterday afternoon our downstairs neighbor had a bunch of kids over, running around and I would have thought they were upstairs had I not seen them.

Good luck!

Shaun,  March 16, 2009 at 3:57 AM  

I posted something a little while ago when you first had a complaint. Regardless of what the cause is, if you believe that it is not you then you have to tackle it head on. WRT to the Regie, the reason they have not done it is that there is very little that actually can be done. The threat is often worse than potential consequence, since you are foreign often they believe that you will scare off. I would write a letter to your neighbour, copy your Landlord AND Regie, in a firm but polite French (get help if necessary). Dont leave it or panic about it. My personal experience is a super duper nice note will have zero effect... if they believe it is you they will persue it.

Jessica March 18, 2009 at 3:28 AM  

I see now how you can sympathize!

There is some association you can join that gives you protection in the event of greater issues due to rent and renting and neighbors I think. If you want me to look it up, just say the word.

I am hoping the kind approach and going to talk to the neighbors today will fix my issues - I will let you know how it goes.

micheal May 21, 2009 at 2:32 AM  


I have found your blog. I really like your perspective on complaint letter writing. As I was doing my research, I have also found a great resource for online complaints: Complaint Letters. I think you will find it very interesting and resourceful

TECHNORAMA 2006 September 20, 2009 at 3:30 PM  

Some Swiss people is really crazy, or should I say lunatic? A neighbour of us complained to the police because our front balcony's large window stayed always closed, and they suspected some illegal activity.. but the worse thing is that police knocked our door on a Sunday at 21:00... I, stupidily, allowed them to enter and check the "dangerous" room (my library)...
We are foreigners in Switzerland... that's why this smells to "discrimination", doesnt' it?

Anonymous,  January 22, 2010 at 3:20 AM  

lol! Reminds of the years I lived in Switzerland (both on the French side & German side). The Swiss are notorious for leaving their little notes everywhere, complaining about things, the neighbours etc.
It's upsetting at first, but they are so up creek with their rules and regulations.
I moved back home to Norway where we have no rules & regulations and it almost seems a bit chaotic. Lol! A lot of things I miss about Switzerland and many things I don't miss too. Love your blog!

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Tina & Rob have relocated their lives to Geneva, Switzerland. This blog is a story of their adventure during the year and all the details inbetween.

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