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A 100% smoke-free building is one where smoking and vaping anything (including tobacco and cannabis) is prohibited in individual apartments, as well as common indoor and outdoor areas. Some smoke-free buildings may allow smoking or vaping in a limited outdoor area.
You can find a list of smoke-free buildings in the city through SmokeFreeHousingNY.
Learn more about the Smoke-Free Air Act and how it affects housing by visiting the Fact Sheet for Tenants and Landlords of Residential Buildings.
Everyone benefits from smoke-free housing:
- For owners, there is less property damage and lower turnover costs. A 2014 poll of city voters found that nearly 70% wanted to live in smoke-free housing.
- For residents, the air is cleaner and healthier in their homes, as well as in common areas, such as hallways, lobbies, elevators, laundry rooms, and stairwells. Smoke-free policies can also help people quit smoking.
Disclosure of Smoking Policies in Residential Buildings
Residential buildings with three or more residential units are required to create a policy on smoking and disclose it to tenants and prospective tenants. Tenants can ask their building owners to make their building smoke-free.
Building owners are responsible for choosing how to enforce tenant violations.
Steps for Building Owners to Make a Building Smoke-Free
- Decide the policy. Do you want the entire building and all common areas, both indoors and outdoors, to be smoke-free, or just apartments and indoor areas? You can involve residents in the process, possibly through a survey, like this sample. (Note: New smoke-free policies do not apply to current tenants of rent-regulated apartments unless they agree to the policy.)
- Educate residents. You must disclose your policy to all current and prospective tenants, either in writing or by posting the policy in a prominent location in the building. This notice should include:
- Policy details
- Benefits of the rule
- Effective date
- Resources for treating smoking and vaping
- Add the rule to leases. You should add the policy to all new leases. The policy will not apply to current rental tenants until they sign a new lease.
- Enforce the rule. You should post signs, remove ashtrays and smoking litter, and start discussing the policy with current and prospective tenants.