The trend in rental properties is definitely swinging toward smoke-free. Tenants are demanding it, an landlords are seeing that the liabilityand costs associated with smoking inside rental properties makes it difficult to keep allowing it.
Many tenants are sensitive to cigarette smoke. Even if you thoroughly clean the unit, paint, replace carpets and change out the blinds, some tenants will still smell the odor of the previous tenant’s smoke. It just doesn’t make for a pleasant living situation, and you could lose a good tenant over it.
Old cigarette smoke is a health risk, too. Particulates in the exhaled smoke stay around for longer than you might think. They are in the dust floating around in the air; they settle in cracks and crevices; and they set the stage for long-term health problems—particularly for children and individuals with lung or breathing issues, such as asthmatics. New studies show that it’s not just second-hand smoke that is potentially harmful. In other words, you don’t have to directly breathe in someone else’s smoke to be harmed—you could be in a room today that someone smoked in yesterday, and still be affected.
A study a couple of years ago focused on 5,000 children who lived in smoke-free residences, both detached and multi-family. It found that overall, 73% of the children were still exposed to tobacco—but those who lived in apartment buildings had much higher instances of nicotine in their blood (84.5%, compared to 70% of kids in detached homes).
The poisons and chemicals in tobacco smoke linger. They travel down hallways, and through ducting and shared walls. The long-term affects on children and other vulnerable populations are not known now. But do you want to be partly responsible for a child’s future health problems? Turning your rental apartments into smoke-free housing is good for everyone—your current tenants, your future tenants and their children, who are the most innocent victims of other people’s smoking habits.
This article originally appeared on tenantscreeningblog