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LAWA Division - Residential
Residential Soundproofing > FAQs

The following are frequently asked questions related to soundproofing construction:

Q: I have a full-time job and work during the day. Do I have to be home during the construction?

A: Yes, this is very important. Either the homeowner or someone representing the homeowner will be required to be present during all construction. No work will be done otherwise. Either the owner or his/her designated representative must also be present to provide access for the Contractor and City inspectors.

Q: Should I take precautions to protect my personal property?

Yes, although all precautions will be taken to avoid damage to the owner’s property, it is advised that the homeowner secure and protect all valuables at the site. It is also recommended that the owner remove any dust-sensitive equipment from the work area to prevent possible damage.

Q: How long will construction take?

A: Depending on the amount of work to be done, actual construction may take 2 to 3 weeks per building. Estimates may vary greatly but, in general, the higher the noise level, the longer the construction duration.

Q: Will the construction affect my property taxes? What about my income taxes?

A: The State Board of Equalization has indicated that County Assessors are not to assess additional value due to sound insulation improvements. Although we understand there are no implications regarding Federal taxes, you are referred to your tax advisor or the IRS for information on this matter.

Q: I have pets and I am concerned for their welfare during construction. What should I do?

A: The homeowner is solely responsible for the well being of their pets. If you are worried about any aspect of your pet’s welfare (construction noise, strange people in and out of the house, escape from yards, etc.) you should remove the animal during construction. The City cannot be responsible for your pets.

Q: I have a doggie door in the back door and a mail slot in the front door. Can I keep these features?

A: Every effort will be made to maintain the features currently in place in your home. However, doggie doors and mail slots are pathways by which noise enters your home. If you decide you must keep the doggie door, be advised that the desired reduction in noise level may not be achieved in that room. You may be asked to sign a document accepting this condition. Mail slots can be relocated or replaced by surface mounted exterior mailboxes.

Q: I have security bars on many of my windows. Will these be taken off and reinstalled?

A: Security bars will be removed from windows and doors when necessary. However, only those bars which comply with all current codes for emergency exiting (quick-release) will be reinstalled by the City.

Q: I have a security alarm system installed. Will this system be disconnected and reconnected by the City?

A: Yes, security alarm systems will be disconnected and reconnected as required. If you have a hard-wired security alarm system, the City will take precautions to save the existing contacts during the removal of the existing window/door and reconnect if the new window/door assembly is compatible.

Q: Will the City remove and reinstall window coverings?

A: No, the City requests that the homeowner remove and reinstall all window treatments.

A related issue should be noted. In some cases, it may be necessary to increase the size of a window in order to meet current code requirements (for example, minimum sized openings for emergency egress from bedrooms are required). In a case such as this, the homeowner is responsible for providing the larger window covering. Also, the City cannot guarantee that all existing window coverings will be compatible with, or suitable for, the new window assemblies.