My question involves landlord-tenant law in the State of: Michigan
I rent a three bedroom duplex, sharing one wall with a neighbor.
About a year ago, my then 4 year old daughter wet the bed in very late in the evening. Rather than let it sit until morning, I changed the linens on the bed and promptly threw the soiled ones in the washer. It was around 10:30-11:00pm that I ran the washer and went back to bed. Unfortunately, the washer shares the same wall with my next door neighbor who complained to the landlord and left a rather rude note on my car in the morning.
I spoke to her the following day and explained the situation, letting her know that it was an isolated incident and that I was extremely sorry she was disturbed. I also told her I would make sure not to do it again since she was bothered by it. I thought all was resolved until my landlord showed up late one evening and told me that I wasn't allowed to use the washer/dryer at night and that it had to stop.
Fast forward a few months. Even I had noticed that my husband was requiring sound to be louder and louder. I mentioned something to him about it and scheduled an appointment to see the doctor. But not before another complaint was made for the loud TV/computer by our neighbors. Our doctor discovered that his ear canals were plugged by excess ear wax and we felt that the problem was resolved.
I, again, approached my neighbor and explained the situation to her. We had a pretty good laugh about it and I felt all was well. The two of us were always on good terms with each other. I never once felt like I was unable to approach her for any reason. Again, the landlord showed up and told us if it didn't stop, we could find another place to live in a very hostile manner.
Fast forward again to a few months ago after the birth of my son. He's a fussy wee man and we found that he was often soothed by sitting in the rocking chair in front of the computer and playing music with the visualizer on for him to look at. No complaint from the neighbor...I told her what was going on. We only took those measures to soothe during the daytime hours or early evening (before 9pm).
Again, the landlord came to my home and berated me in front of my children. He told me that either it needed to stop or we needed to leave. I went next door again and spoke to my neighbor who was in the process of moving. She assured me that after the ear wax incident all had been peaceful and well, but that the landlord asked her if we were the cause of her move. She told me that we were absolutely not to blame at all and went further to tell me that he had asked if my 3 month old baby was making too much noise.
Of course I was really upset after that and began looking for a new home for us.
On Saturday, we were in the process of packing...it was noon. The kids were laughing and we were listening to some music (not loud, we could speak in inside voices and still hear each other quite clearly). The landlord showed up and told me that he was outside and it sounded like a circus in my house. He could no longer take me at my word to keep things quiet and that he was suing me.
I would like to stress that the police were never called once. Is it him or us that is the problem? Or both?