There Will Soon be a Dedicated Team to Resolve Noise Disputes Between Neighbours


It’s not uncommon to be subject to strange, loud noises all through the night—whether by your inconsiderate neighbours who just purchased a karaoke machine or the cars outside (seriously, who is driving at two in the morning?).

However, you can rest easier knowing this: the government has recently announced that they will be setting up a dedicated unit to resolve serious noise disputes between neighbours by the end of 2023.

This effectively removes the need to go full-Karen mode and call the police on your neighbours (don’t do that, please). 

What To Expect From The New Unit

The unit’s formation was announced in parliament by Minister of State for National Development Sim Ann to resolve noise disputes “beyond self-help”. 

The group will be able to investigate disputes to stop nuisance behaviour.

Basically, this means that the personnel in this unit will actually go on-field and check the noise levels based on the reports they’re given, to verify if the claims are true. It will also complement the existing efforts from organisations dealing with this by going a step further. 

This unit is intended mostly for serious cases in which noise has been weaponised to purposely cause suffering to their neighbours over a long period of time—unfortunately, you probably won’t be able to report your neighbours for their once-a-year late-night karaoke session, even if you have an exam the next day.

Ms Sim said that the weaponisation of noise was a “serious matter” and “strong actions” were required to put a stop to it.

Under the new legal framework, cases like these that disrupt the peace on purpose will be subject to mandatory mediation for community disputes. 

An example? The very famous Hougang case that has gone viral on TikTok:

@myneighbourfromhellsgReposting because my speed x10 has issues. Still dont understand why im paying taxes for such person in the force. Banging everytime hes home. PROOF.

♬ original sound – Snippetsofmylife

Not a Replacement for Good Neighbourly Ties

Even with the formation of the new unit, the preferred way to resolve this conflict still remains engaging with neighbours directly. 

Ms Sim stressed that government intervention should not be the first solution parties turn to, as this would “weaken the kampung spirit”. 

The new unit will not replace good neighbourly communication: when disputes first occur, Ms Sim hopes that the parties involved will still attempt to resolve it themselves without government intervention. 

“By making their presence felt at critical points of dispute resolution, we hope that this unit of dedicated personnel can deliver the right amount of intervention, bring relief to those who have a genuine grievance, and discourage the wilful weaponisation of noise,” she said.

The Noise Experimental Space

A “noise experimental space” will be set up by the Municipal Services Office (MSO) to let Singaporeans experience how the noise they make affects their neighbours. 


The space will allow visitors to test first-hand the noise level different actions emit and help them understand how these noises travel. 

This is in hopes of encouraging visitors to adapt their actions to keep the noise levels lower, or find out what exactly your noisy neighbour has been doing in their flat all this while (or that you are the noisy neighbour).