What are my rights and what does the law say at all?

“Where no plaintiff, there no judge,” that is; music can always be played as long as no one is disturbed. Therefore, we recommend that you approach your neighbors and try to talk BEFORE a conflict arises. Try to find out when your own practicing disturbs the neighbors minimally.

If there is anger after all, it is good to know what your rights are. There is a multitude of different provisions in house rules, regulations but also in the Civil Code, the municipal police regulations and the Swiss Code of Obligations.
In general the following applies: A general ban on making music in the lease or the house rules is invalid, daily practice is a personal right.
Although consideration for neighbors is laid down by law (Art. 684 ZGB and tenancy law: Art. 257f OR), what this actually means is a gray area.
What do I have to accept and respect by law?

  1. Rest periods: On workdays 12:00-13:00, Sundays and public holidays
  2. Night rest for making music: 20:00-8:00, in summer on Friday and Saturday evening only from 23:00
  3. A limitation of the practice time to 2-3 hours per day (if required)
  4. A general ban on particularly loud instruments such as percussion or trumpet is possible

Concretely you can NOT forbid me, e.g:

  • – To play the violin in the afternoon at 13-15h (except rest days)
  • – To play the flute in the morning 10-12 o’clock (except on rest days)
  • – To play the guitar in the evening 18-20 o’clock (except rest days)

However, you CAN forbid me, e.g:

  • – To make music on Sunday morning (day off!)
  • – To practice my recital at midnight (rest period!)
  • – To play drums in the apartment (unusually loud instrument)
  • – To practice 6 hours a day (at the discretion of the landlord)

This newsletter contains only general information and may not be used for specific questions. we do not assume any liability for the correctness of the contents listed here. Although the information is checked for accuracy and timeliness, to the extent permitted by law, we disclaim all liability for any undesirable consequences arising from the use of this information.
Image: Image courtesy of stockimages at, Photo by stockimages. Published on 09 January 2015, Stock photo – Image ID: 100304737    

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