Noise emissions relating to music, musical instruments and parties must comply with the requirements set out in the Environmental Protection (Noise) Regulations 1997 (the Regulations).


Neighbours playing loud music on a regular basis makes up the majority of the customer action requests the Shire receives in relation to noise. The noise at the receiving point (ie. if it is your neighbours playing music, your property would be the receiving point) must comply with the allowable levels set out in the Regulations.

Suggestions to minimise disturbance to your neighbours

  • Locate the stereo system indoors, with doors and windows closed
  • Ensure the volume is not excessive (ie. not so loud that it may be audible at your neighbour’s property)
  • Adjust the bass levels down
  • Ensure any subwoofers are isolated from the floor.

Musical instruments

Musical instruments do not have to comply with the allowable levels set out in the Regulations. This is because it is difficult for music students to practise effectively and in compliance with the Regulations. However, there are strict requirements set out to control the use of such equipment.

Musical instruments:

  • Must not be used for more than one hour per day
  • Must be used between 7am and 7pm Monday-Saturday and 9am and 7pm Sundays and Public Holidays.

The playing of the instruments needs to be reasonable.

Suggestions to minimise disturbance to your neighbours

  • Play the instrument in a suitable room with doors and windows closed. Sheds do not offer any useful noise dampening.
  • Maintain electronic amplified equipment at the lowest possible level or use headphones.
  • Consider using sound off pads, cymbal silencers or headphones on drum kits.
  • If possible, advise your neighbours of proposed rehearsal times and days and consider adjusting them in order to minimise disturbance.

Party and music noise

The music noise associated with parties must comply with the table of assigned levels set out in the Regulations.

Generally your neighbours will not mind if the party is a once off occurrence and if the noise is reduced at a reasonable time.

Suggestions to minimise disturbance to your neighbours

  • Start your party earlier so that it will finish earlier.
  • Avoid using speakers outside (if they are outside, have them pointing towards your house, not towards your neighbours). 
  • Let your neighbours know about the party and the time you expect it to finish.
  • Move your guests inside if the party is likely to finish late and close all windows and doors.
  • Adjust the volume control (particularly the bass) to minimise the annoyance associated with the music.

Noise complaints

The actions that you may take vary depending on the situation, please find below possible steps for both a once-off disturbance and for a regular occurrence.

Once-off occurrence

If it is a once off party or music that is out of control or excessive, you may contact the Police for assistance by calling 131 444.

Regular occurrence

If your neighbours are having parties, playing music or using musical instruments on a regular basis there are several options for you to consider:

  • Approach your neighbours to advise them of the disturbance they are causing and attempt to come up with an agreeable and reasonable solution.
  • Request assistance from the Shire's Environmental Health Officers.

More information and contact

For more information on noise from music and parties, please contact the Shire's Health Service on 9290 6742.