As a tenant in a rental property, you have the right to
live free of a significant cause of illness in the home and a major
cause of preventable death in the United States: secondhand smoke.
With all the controversy surrounding this issue, you may
find it difficult to understand what your non-smoking rights are. On
this site you will find the information you need to live in a
For starters, we want you to know that non-smokers with
serious breathing disabilities or smoke allergies have legal protection under the Americans with Disabilities
Act and the Fair Housing Act.
Additionally, laws currently exist that you can use to
assert your rights to a smoke-free apartment.
Here's another important fact: A
smoke-free policy is NOT discriminatory. As long as the policy
is not used to target a protected class or minority, a building manager
is legally free to restrict or prohibit smoking in their building.
Further, the right to smoke is NOT protected under law,
according to the opinions of the Michigan Attorney General and the U.S.
Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
Let us tell you more about your Tenants' Rights, Your Resources and important health facts
You can also find smoke-free apartment
buildings in the Smoke-Free
Apartment Listing found on this section of this website.
The December, 2007 issue of UNITS
magazine, published by the National Apartment Association, has a
cover/feature set of articles, which you can access, titled Clearing
Toward Smoke-Free Housing
An AIMS Property Management Update
issued jointly by the National Apartment Association and the National
Multi-Housing Council on February 1, 2008 provides a
that explains that no-smoking policies are
both legal and good for business. The memorandum also provides "Best
Practices for Implementing a Smoke-Free Policy".
National Multi Housing Council on
February 1, 2008 issued a memorandum
which stated that it was legal for apartment owners to adopt smoke-free
policies and that it made business sense to do so.
Our brief Fact
Sheet and Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) provide concise
information on why adopting a smoke-free apartment policy makes sense
for landlords and tenants; they're also good as handouts at meetings.