Offering smoke-free housing at our newest building helps to preserve a pleasant atmosphere for our staff, tenants and their guests for years to come. The overwhelmingly positive feedback we have received from our tenants reassures us that it was the right choice at the right time. — Bob Dhillan, Housing Case Manager, Canadian Mental Health Association Elgin.
After reviewing our current occupants, it was determined that moving to a smoke-free property was the right thing to do. New tenants are very pleased that the properties are smoke-free and the maintenance costs have drastically been reduced. Smoke-free is the way businesses are moving today, so it only proved positive that we move that way as well. — Jon McCurry, Administrator, Eastwood Housing
Your landlord or condo board is permitted to introduce a no smoking policy for your building making individual units, property or balconies smoke-free. The Smoke-free Ontario Act (SFOA) only specifies public areas in apartment and condo buildings to be smoke-free, including hallways, laundry rooms, stairwells and other commonly used space. No smoking policies:
- Create a healthier environment for tenants and staff by reducing second-hand smoke exposure.
- Reduce the risk of fire. The Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management reports that lit smoking materials are the number one ignition source in fatal fires in residential dwellings.
- Save money on insurance and the cost of turning over a unit.
- Are enforced a the Landlord Tenant Board.
Section 10 of the standard lease invites parties to agree to a smoking policy. This section gives space to describe the details of the policy. The standard lease is mandatory for most residential leases.
Support for smoke-free housing
In 2015, the Ontario Tobacco Research Unit released the following information about second-hand smoke exposure:
- In 2014, 29% of Ontario adults living in multi-unit dwellings were exposed to second-hand smoke drifting between units at least once in the past month.
- 9 out of 10 adults in Ontario believed that smoking should not be allowed inside multi-unit dwellings. The level of support has increased significantly since 2005 (89% vs. 73%).
There are resources available for both tenants and landlords on the Smoke-free Housing Ontario website.
For assistance developing or implementing your smoke-free policy, contact Southwestern Public Health at 1800-922-0096 or email email@example.com.