Adding a smoke-free housing policy to leases can significantly impact the health of tenants and the bottom line for landlords. Here are some quick facts about smoking in multi-unit housing from Tobacco Free Florida:
- 80 percent of Florida adults are non-smokers.
- 4 in 5 non-smokers would prefer a smoke-free building policy.
- Smoking is the leading cause of residential fires.
- Some insurance companies offer discounts to properties with smoke-free policies.
- Smoke-free units cost less to rehab and require less turnover time than units that have been smoked in.
- Tenants with pre-existing medical conditions that are negatively impacted by secondhand smoke can file a complaints under the Fair Housing Act.
What can we do about this?
Tenants can advocate to landlords or property managers for smoke-free housing policies by educating other tenants and property management on the benefits of smoke-free housing policies. Landlords, condominium associations, and property managers can develop and adopt policy language in the lease, association rules and/or house rules to limit secondhand smoke exposure in and out of units. The Tobacco Free Pinellas Coalition can present information on smoke-free housing to housing leadership and stakeholders, help facilitate policy adoption, and provide cessation and prevention information. For more information please contact us at (727) 588-4040, ext. 3171.