Penn's Rules of Conduct
This information is provided by University of Pennsylvania Office of Student Conduct.
If you are a Penn student, your behavior has a direct impact on how the West Philadelphia community views the University, of which you are a representative. As a Penn student, you are expected to abide by the University's Code of Student Conduct regardless of time or place. The standard of conduct required of Penn students reflects high expectations for responsible behavior. Responsible tenant behavior includes respect for the health, safety, and property of others in your residence and your neighborhood.
Potential violations of the Code of Student Conduct include, but are not limited to, the following behaviors:
Complaints of this nature, whether made by a landlord, another student, or a member of the community should be brought to the attention of the Office of Off-Campus Services. If the situation warrants, alleged violations of the Code of Student Conduct will be referred to and investigated by the University's Office of Student Conduct. Depending on the seriousness of the offense, investigations may result in formal charges and disciplinary action against a student or students.
Many disputes, however, do not warrant such action and can often be resolved by mediation. Penn's University Mediation Program provides an avenue for tenants, landlords, and other community members to address and resolve disputes in a constructive, confidential and informal manner.
Trash and Recycling
See information about trash disposal and recycling in University City and Center City by clicking here.
Noise and Parties
Be a good neighbor. Get to know your neighbors. It makes life more fun and safer. Respect their right to peace and quiet and keep your property clean and trash-free. Most of the conflicts between student tenants and their neighbors center around too much noise, too loud and rowdy parties and too much trash. Remember, whether you live on or off-campus, the Drug and Alcohol Policy of the University and the Student Code of Conduct apply to you just the same.
Your neighbors can be your friends. If you need someone to watch your place while you are away, water your plants or lend you a hammer, they will be there for you. They can also direct you to fun places in the neighborhood and great places for a delicious, inexpensive meal. Get involved with the Community Association in your area. Most students live in Spruce Hill. Call 215-349-7825 to find out how you can become a member.
Here is some important information regarding excessive noise, loud partying and trash:
Noise - It's rude, it's disturbing and it's against the law! Loud music, noisy parties, gatherings in excess of the building capacity are also violations of the Philadelphia City Code and of your lease agreement. All residential leases, whether explicitly stated or implied, contain a basic right: the right to "Quiet Enjoyment". While this ensures your right to quietly enjoy full possession and use of the premises, it also imposes on you the responsibility and obligation not to disturb your neighbors, whether the people living in your building or the people living next door or across the street. Some landlords attach to the lease a list of rules and regulations regarding noise, quiet hours, prohibited behavior/activity and clearly indicate that breach of these rules is breach of the lease. If you are in violation of your lease, the landlord will notify you of the violation. If after the notification the violation is repeated, the landlord can start eviction procedures against you.
And now the good news: You live in a neighborhood which has traditionally been home to many students, graduate and undergraduate. Year-round residents are aware of that and many enjoy the life and energy young people bring to a community, however, a lively community does not have to be a noisy community. If you continually spoil your neighbor's sleep and quiet time, your neighbor can spoil your fun. Respect your neighbor and your neighbor will respect you.
The City of Philadelphia Code, title 7, #10-400 regulates the amount of noise and vibration allowed in residential neighborhoods and establishes rules of individual conduct and activity.
"The City of Philadelphia finds that noise and excessive vibration degrade the environment of the City to a degree which
- is harmful and detrimental to the health, welfare and safety of its inhabitants;
- interferes with the comfortable enjoyment of life, property and recreation;
- causes nuisances;
that no one has any right to create noise and excessive vibration, that effective control and elimination of noise and excessive vibration is essential to the furtherance of the health and welfare of the City's inhabitants and to the conduct of the normal pursuits of life, recreation, commerce and industrial activity."
Here is the City Code definition of noise: "the presence of a sound or sounds of such intensity, duration, frequency or character which annoy, disturb or cause or tend to cause adverse psychological and physiological effects on persons, in excess of standards promulgated by the Board of Health."
And if this is not complicated enough, the text continues, "No person shall operate a radio, tape player or musical device in... residential districts at a sound level which produces sound audible at a distance greater than one hundred feet from the location of such radio, tape player or device... In residential districts, three decibels above background level at the location of such radio, etc... between the hours of 9:00 PM and 8:00 AM."
Remember, the quiet hours of the City are 9:00 PM to 8:00 AM.
Keep the volume of your music down. Others don't have to like the same music you do. Turn the volume down during quiet hours. If you do have a party and expect the music to get a bit louder than usual, talk to your neighbors. Let them know you are going to have a party. They may put up with the inconvenience as long as parties are the exception, not the rule. Be responsible and responsive.
If your neighbor complains to you about your loud music, your frequent partying and attending behavior, listen to him/her and try to correct the problem. Don't let the problem escalate. Neighbors can call the University of Pennsylvania police or the City of Philadelphia police and you may first be warned and then cited for breaking the law. Don't let it come to that!
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