Smoke-Free Housing

Smoke-Free HousingIf smoking is permitted in multi-unit housing, secondhand smoke can infiltrate into neighboring units. Tobacco smoke can find its way through the smallest of openings, including through light fixtures, ceiling crawl spaces, electrical and plumbing fixtures, and gaps between walls. The only way to be completely protected from secondhand smoke in multi-unit housing is to prohibit smoking throughout the building. In addition to protecting residents from harmful secondhand smoke, smoke-free policies can also benefit landlords by reducing fire insurance costs, sharply cutting renovation costs after smokers move out, and eliminating any risk of liability for exposing tenants to secondhand smoke.

For more information about smoke-free policies, see our publications below or contact the center at

Additionally, New Yorkers can learn more about smoke-free housing and obtain smoke-free apartment listings nearby by visiting

Related information may be obtained from the Public Health Law Center and Changelab Solutions.

New York Guide to Smoke Free Condominiums
A guide outlining the steps necessary to establish a smokefree policy in condominium housing.

New York Guide to Smoke Free Housing Cooperatives
A guide outlining the steps necessary to establish a smokefree policy in cooperative housing.

New York Tenants’ Guide to Smoke Free Housing
This guide provides information to tenants about their rights relative to secondhand smoke in a multi-unit building, and guidance on how to work with neighbors and property owners to reduce or eliminate secondhand smoke.

New York Smoke-Free Housing Toolkit
A toolkit for landlords wishing to adopt smoke-free policies for their property.

Creating Smoke Free Spaces: Policy Options to Reduce Secondhand Smoke Exposure and Tobacco Use in Vermont
Report exploring policies to reduce exposure to secondhand smoke and tobacco use in Vermont.