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I have a friend with 3 four-plexes and she tries to not rent the upstairs units to tenants with children just because of the noise issues.  So far she has been very fortunate and it has worked out great.  

If you are living downstairs, two months before the lease is up, suggest that they move downstairs and you move upstairs!  If they don't go for that, they can move somewhere else and you move in upstairs.  Top floor will be the quietest floor!

In the meantime, try talking to them and ask that they teach the kids to walk, not run, and to talk with "indoor voices".  Community living is hard and everyone has to tolerate some level of noise, but then again everyone should try to be cognizant and respectful of their neighbors and try to keep the noise down!

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That's a touchy subject and I think it depends a little on how you want to run the relationship with the tenants. I usually try to appeal to the mutual respect issue with noise complaints. Delicately remind them that sharing common walls requires some level of care be excersized at various times of the day/night. Hopefully they are decent folks and they will take that to heart on some level. You might even ask them if any of your activities are disturbing them as a way give them a the feeling that their right to peace and white is as important as yours... best of luck

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