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How to prevent a light nuisance

Use this page to find out how you can reduce and prevent light nuisances.

Light nuisance guidance

Artificial light from neighbouring properties can affect people’s enjoyment of their homes and become a nuisance.

How we decide if light is a statutory nuisance

To be considered a statutory nuisance, it must be clear that the nuisance has a significant impact on people nearby.

We will assess the following factors to decide if a complaint is a statutory nuisance:

  • The times at which it happens
  • How often it happens 
  • How long it lasts 
  • The intensity of the nuisance 
  • The location and characteristics of the area 

If your neighbours complain about your light, please listen to their concerns and take time to view the problem. You should take reasonable action to minimise the impact and tell them what you will do to resolve the situation and when you will do it.

How to avoid causing a nuisance

There are several things you can do to avoid causing a nuisance:

  • Re-angle or partially shade lights
  • Fit a passive infra-red sensor to control when lights turn on and off
  • Use a lower-power bulb
  • Don't fit unnecessary or excessively bright lights. 150 halogen lamps are suitable for outside lamps
  • Turn lights off when you don't need them

When aiming artificial lighting, ensure that you only light the area that needs lighting. You should angle spotlights down to minimise light being thrown beyond your boundary.

If it is still causing annoyance after you have adjusted the angle and aim of the light, consider fitting a hood or shield to narrow, control and limit the light to the area.