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Love NYC, but could do without the noise?


Girl sitting at her laptop covering her ears to block the noise

I would guess that many of us are happy to see our great city back to normal with human life roaming the streets and sidewalks, although one thing that may be missed by some is the “peace and quiet” during the pandemic. Many New Yorkers have become used to the sirens, jackhammers, street noise and all that makes New York, well … “New York”. In fact, there are some who are so used to the noise pollution that they can’t live with the quiet, which becomes noticeably apparent when you leave the city for the suburbs. For those who prefer to enjoy their home without these urbanesque noise intrusions, there are ways to block out a lot of the commotion. Here are some suggestions, in no particular order, that should help.


  • Rugs – Rugs and thick rug pads should also help diminish the sounds that typically bounce off of wood and tile floors which also tend to be amplified because of the materials.

  • Window and door seals – Adding draft guards such as weather stripping and sealants will help reduce some of the unwanted noise, and will also help keep your home better insulated.

  • Sound-proofing curtains – These curtains are just another layer you can add to help block out the noise. If you’re also looking for blackout curtains, many double as sound-proofing curtains so you’re killing two birds with one stone.

  • Wall or ceiling coverings – Certain materials such as cotton, foam and felt are more effective at blocking out noise, so you may consider decorative accessories that you can use to accent your home design while cutting out some of the unwanted noise.

  • Bookshelves – Adding bookshelves with heavy, dense books to shared and outside-facing walls will help eliminate some of the noise coming into your home, and they happen to also add a nice, sophisticated touch to your home design.

  • White noise machine – Whether you invest in a machine or simply use a phone app to produce white noise, it should also help drown out some noise.

  • Upgrade your windows – This may be a little costly, however it is probably most effective as some windows can block up to 95 percent of sounds. Soundproofing windows like CitiQuiet are made with thicker glass and also help with inclement weather. If you have unconventional size windows, you should hire an acoustical consultant to determine if you can just seal the window without making a big investment.

These soundproofing items should help achieve the peace and quiet some of you may be seeking. 6sqft offers suggestions on where to find some of these items, should you be interested. Regardless of which way you lean (noise vs quiet), be sure to consider these things when searching for your next home.

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