Noise Control

Te whakarata turituri

Find out what is considered ‘too noisy’ and how to take action if there is a noise problem in your area.

  • Excessive noise is any noise that is under human control that 's  loud enough to unreasonably interfere with the peace, comfort and convenience of anyone living here.

    Examples of excessive noise might include loud music, parties, band practice, broken alarms or machinery.

    It doesn’t include every day activities such as lawn mowing, as long as these are carried out at a reasonable hour.

    It does include Building and Demolition activities – they are required to abide by  NZS 6803-1999 Acoustic Construction Noise Guidelines.

  • If you have a noisy neighbour, try talking to them first.

    If the problem persists, phone us 24 hours on 03 441 0499 (Queenstown)  or 03 443 0024 (Wānaka). 

  • We'll send out a noise control officer to assess the complaint.

    If we find people are creating excessive noise, we'll issue a verbal or written notice (this notice is valid for 72 hours) to reduce the noise to a reasonable level (most people will cease excessive noise at this stage).

    If further excessive noise complaints are received, we may seize and impound stereos or any other offending equipment, or take other steps to reduce the noise.

  • Noise problems can often be avoided with a little consideration for your neighbours. There is no permit that allows you to make a noise, but there are a few simple things that are good to keep in mind:

    • Tell neighbours in advance if you're having a party (or invite them along).

    • Tell neighbours of any planned works on your property that may be noisy.

    • Ensure alarms are installed correctly and aren't over sensitive or faulty.

    • Keep doors and windows closed to contain noise from inside your house.

    • Turn down loud noise at a reasonable hour at night.

    • Don't start up noisy equipment early in the mornings or late in the evenings.

    • Be mindful that many people in this district work in hospitality and can have less sociable working hours.

  • Some construction activity does not generate excessive noise and can take place at any time.  However some is unavoidably noisy, and must be restricted to the most reasonable times.

    Our policy

    We use the New Zealand Standard on construction noise as a guide to assess and control construction noise in residential areas. The same limits apply to any construction work affecting  residential properties in town centre areas.

    Work is considered noisy if it is loud enough to unreasonably disrupt anyone's peace, comfort or convenience.

    Hours for noisy construction work 

    These are the times when noisy construction can be carried out in a residential area:

    Monday - Friday: 6.30am - 7.30am Quiet preparation work only is permitted.
      7.30am - 6.00pm Noisy work is permitted, but should be kept to reasonable levels.
      6.00pm - 8.00pm Work can continue, but no noisy work (e.g. hammering, power tools, excavation).
    Saturday: 7.30am - 6.00pm Noisy work is permitted, but should be kept to reasonable levels

    Try to plan your noisy work to be least annoying to people living and working close to your work site.

    If you want to do construction work outside these hours, you need to apply for an exemption.  

  • Noisy construction work is not allowed on Sundays and public holidays.

  • Make a plan

    Identify where noise issues might occur on your worksite and what you can do to try minimise them.

    Consult the neighbours

    It's a good idea to consult neighbours before you begin work as it lessens their uncertainty.

    It helps to appoint a contact person who can inform neighbours of the likely type of noise and when to expect it. The contact person should also pass on any concerns that neighbours may have to the contractors.

    Contractors are responsible for cooperating with Council staff over any excessive noise complaints resulting from their work.