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Condo association forcing us out for smoking. What can we do?

Posted on Sat, Feb 06, 2010 @ 06:27 AM
My neighbor has complained to the condo association about my husband's cigarette smoke seeping into her condo. She was a smoker when she moved in about 6 yrs. ago. Now she says she has asthma and the smoke irritates it. My husband and myself are being threatened with a fine of $100.00 a day until we stop smoking or sell our condo. We have lived in these two towers for over 23 yrs and now we are very unhappy over this situation. What can we do to end this horrible nightmare? We feel she does not have to put us through this since she once smoked. We have been told the cigarette smoke is seeping through the outlets between her bedroom and ours. PLEASE HELP US.



Call an insulation contractor and see if he can foam the areas which ajoin your two units. 
I would also check with a lawyer if after the foam if she still complains. 
When a condo places a new rule in place such as no smoking in your unit I beleve that you should be grandfathered in as you were a smoker when you bought and should have every right to continue to smoke in your unit. Try the foam first.

posted @ Saturday, February 06, 2010 6:56 AM by Donald Montgomery

The first one is right get a contractor to come in and check it out. It is possible that nothing is seeping into her home and she just smells old cigarette smoke still lingering in her home from smoking for years. Once you have the contractor check it out, get something in writing from them and submit it to the condo association. Also don't tell anyone you smoke in your place anymore (their are busy bodies who will report you even though you think they are your friends) Also check the bi-laws does it say anything about smoking yes or no? If not they have no leg to stand on unless a vote by all the unit owners is taken. They just can't fine you because of a complaint. First a rule must be broken. Check your bi-laws or if you are not sure you can email them to me I'd be more then happy to go through them for you. 

posted @ Saturday, February 06, 2010 2:11 PM by Barbi Rose

HEAVENS... ta betsy. please tell me you DO know the answer to that, inherently... i KNOW you do !!!! 
just for the heckie dern of it, i'll put it out there anyway. 
option #1: 
YOU ACQUIRE 8,982 MORE FRIENDS THAT SMOKE, INVITE THEM TO YOUR HOME DAILY AND TRIPLE Y'ALLS (your husband and yourself's) SMOKING BY FOUR (triple by four? yeah... that sounds good) and TEACH THE DOG TO SMOKE IF NEED BE AND THAT OSTENTATIOUS "IT'S ALL ABOUT ME" BITCH'LL BE DEAD LIKE ::el snap-o:: (with just'ah modicum of luck!!!!)  
option #2: 
make it a game ta see how long it takes that $100 fine doled out randomly to get to $3.4 mIl and ALL Y'ALL (friends, dog'n all) run around nekkid in yer 'common property' yellin' "ED McMAHON REALLY AIN'T DEAD !!!! WE ARE IN DEBT IN THE CONDO ASSOCIATION'S HOLIER THAN THOU PRETENSIOUS WORLD FOR $3.4 MIL !!!! and i NEVER thought we'd have that kinda money ta lose !!!!, LET'S SMOKE AND EAT BIPOLAR MEDS (in honor of the condo dudes/gals, of course) AND POP'AH FEW TOPS OFF $323.89 A BOTTLE OF TEQUILA.. AREBA REBA AND WE DON'T MEAN McINTYRE"... then run in YOUR condo when ya hear'ah siren or two and deny everything. 
i guaranteeeeee ya THAT ain't in tha bylaws (which NObody seems ta realize are only accountable for if they're on your mortgage docs) cuz i've been foreclosed on by my condo assn. 2 times and since they didn't abided by THEIR letter of each "bylaw" (vomit) my mortgage was null and void.... and guessie whattie? i'm livin' here FREE OF CHARGE and YES, i wanted a free ride, i put up with them idjuts (read your bylaws and demand a receipt or contract for every single itty bitty piece of crap they demand cuz nobody's gonna have read 'em but you anyway). FREE, i tell ya. NO shame'n my game... and guess who has tha deed. <sweet smile> 
then go write your own bylaws and give'em hell everytime they complain that you slashed their tires (cuz "no complaining" will be in your bylaws, naturally... and even have it notarized. it's more than probably did. 
(now i'm gonna smoke'ah cigarette and i don't even smoke !) 
live it up ! 
p.s.) and when the exhaust goes crazy in the cold cold weather when they start their car, turn'm in for smokin'.

posted @ Saturday, February 06, 2010 5:53 PM by belle

Seeping through outlets??? Gimme a break! Making you sell because you smoke???? I don't buy that either. My guess is that there's several others complaints against you (valid or otherwise) and that the smoking issue is simply a convenient club with which to beat you. 
By the way - smoking is stupid! Everybody knows that. Why don't you just quit? Not because anybody's making you, but because you'll feel smarter.

posted @ Sunday, February 07, 2010 11:07 AM by gazzelle

Menards stores sell small foam products to put around outlets in walls. I think they are primarily used for insulation purposes, but they might work for smoking seepage.

posted @ Monday, February 08, 2010 9:42 AM by nellie

Smoking indoors is regulated by 386 of the Florida Statutes, some obscure federal law I cannot recall due to the time that this blog is being written, and under condominium law can be deemed a nuisance. There are several cases submitted for arbitration and/or civil cases related to smoking in units affecting others and several affected have one. You are most probably not in a winning situation. 
By not abating the "nuisance" the Board could be in violation of their obligation under the Condominium Documents, Florida law, other local applicable health codes and the Federal Fair Housing Act. 
The reality is, not everyone enjoys waking up to the lingering smell of bar filled cigarette smoke.  
You are forcing your neighbors to endure your second hand smoke and damage to their property the tar causes - even through walls which is actionable. 
If you want to smoke, I suggest you do try outdoors.

posted @ Monday, February 08, 2010 10:37 PM by Joyce Nord (thecondocommando.com

You are also directly affecting your neighbors health without their consent.

posted @ Monday, February 08, 2010 10:38 PM by Joyce Nord

Believe it or not, in condominium situations, yes it seeps. 
As a condo manager, I have been involved in an instance where someone smoking next to a non-smoker caused "haze" in a unit everyday.  
The Board and owner sued and won. It happens. 
This is not just applicable to cigarette smoke but also for other types of smoke like crack and marijuana.

posted @ Monday, February 08, 2010 11:27 PM by Joyce Nord thecondocommando.com

I’m glad I found this site and hope I can get help here and do appreciate any advice. 
I was reading many comments here about someone being fined if they smoked in their condo due to a neighbor being affected by the smoke seeping in to their condo unit. 
I have a Condo in Vero Beach Florida that my wife and I go to several times a year from New England. I have this neighbor right below me that’s a chain smoker. HE RENTS THIS PLACE. He never leaves is unit and constantly smokes causing the smoke odor to seep into my condo unit and saturates everything with the smell.  
This has been going on since I bought this place 4 years ago. We both are being effected health wise due to the smoke coming in. 
I noticed this the first day we moved in. Being that the place was newly rebuilt, I thought the smell was the paint on the walls etc. Then after awhile, I realized it was the smoke coming into my unit from the below unit. 
I tried to track the smell and caulked areas but didn’t help that much and smoke odor still spews in. 
I recently called the Condo Association and it seemed to me that they didn’t want to be bothered with my issue and gave me a quick fix and said to buy a (AIR PURIFIER). ????? 
What can I do? I don’t know the Florida laws but can I get a lawyer to help me out here? Or are there laws that I do have a right to resolve this issue 
I do want to resolve this issue ASAP. 
I’m hoping to get some good advice. 
Thank you, 

posted @ Friday, March 05, 2010 7:41 AM by Jamie G

It's 3AM and I have been chocking since 11PM - even with a CPAC mask on! This has been happening day and night since I moved in 4 months ago. I have sealed everything, professionally cleaned the coils and ducts in a 1 year old A/C, installed an expensive air purifying system by Shakely, plug-ins etc. My neighbor swears he doesn't smoke. 
Tonight it was so bad I called the fire department (they couldn't help except to sympathise because they could smell how bad the problem was).  
I even woke the condo president, who was kind enough to come and witness the major problem. 
I simply cannot breathe in my unit, my eyes are red, irritated and watering. 
Finally, I stuck my nose in my neighbors door frame and sure enough it was him!!! I knocked his door down until he opened and nicely admitted that yes, he had been smoking for hours. He agreed to stop. This after I've spent over $1,000 trying to seal the condo to no avail. 
If anyone has any thoughts, I'd welcome them. 
I've read there is a clean-air act and that we non-smokers do have rights. I'm hoping the association will cooperate in turning this condo into a smoke-free building.  
Has anyone successfully accomplished that in their building? 

posted @ Friday, March 26, 2010 2:22 AM by Chocking in Miami

I live in Salt Lake City. We have just enacted a nonsmoking clause in our bylaws. There are no grandfather clauses, and a warning system. First offense is a warning, then a $100 fine for each offense thereafter. It is completely legal here in Utah for clean air acts. We have them in Bars, restaurants, hotels etc.  
We do allow smoking in the parking lot which is @ 40 feet away from any dwellings of the HOA, but they must distinguish their butts in the provided ashtrays. If this is not adhered to a complete non-smoking bylaw will be adopted.  
It really makes sense to me for resale value, and to a potential buyer to not see cigarette butts scattered on the ground or in flower pots or to smell smoke as they come to an open house. These laws even lower the insurance rates for fire reasons.  
I have no bad feelings for voting in these bylaws as we are having a child this winter and don't want any complications. 
Why should anyone have to suffer from the addictions of other people taking chemicals into their bodies?

posted @ Friday, November 12, 2010 6:46 PM by Jo Teerlink

I too suffer from a neighbor's cigarette addiction. I do agree with the smoker's viewpoint of having the right to do whatever he/she may (smoke) in their own home. It is only when it goes beyond one's own home that makes it unacceptable. I compare smoking, smoke intrusion, second hand smoke, etc. to driving drunk. Everyone has the right to drink alcohol (smoke) to the point they become intoxicated. But when that intoxicated person gets in a car (second-hand smoke), they now are a deadly threat to society (cancer, heart disease, bronchitis, etc.). It's wrong.  
Second-hand smoke is a by-product of smoking just as feces is a by-product of food consumption. Why then do smokers use a toilet to rid their waste? Should they not just leave their feces on the living room floor, or balcony (as some smokers feel they kindly do to not disrupt the living environment)?  

posted @ Monday, January 17, 2011 11:10 PM by Dan

I've written on this before. I can't get the condo association to install smoking in your unit only - if it seeps you must seal your unit. I can't afford to hire an attorney. Has anyone had any luck in getting this accomplished? Especially under Florida law? Thanks for any advice you can give me. (I've had to move out of my condo and can't sell it in this market!!!)

posted @ Tuesday, January 18, 2011 9:55 AM by Chocking in Miami

It's about time you had some respect for others you selfish PIGS!

posted @ Friday, February 25, 2011 3:09 PM by davy

I need help with this problem too. I have a downstairs neighbor that smokes and it comes in through my windows. During nice weather i like to open my windows and its a nice day i my leave them open during the day and when i return home i can smell the smoke in everything my cloths my bedding. towels. 
I bought this place because it was a no smoking condo..I'm thinking of retaining a lawyer suing for the cost of my condo.

posted @ Sunday, April 10, 2011 5:48 PM by Tracy

@Tracy: I don't understand, if your condo was "no smoking" when you bought it, how can they be smoking now? I'm looking for an attorney myself. I'd like to find one that will begin a class action suit against condo associatons who don't protect the rights of non-smokers. I still can't move back into my condo even though I need to desperately. This matter might just put me under financially. If you find an attorney, or whatever else you find out, please post it here. I'll do the same. Good luck! Ana

posted @ Sunday, April 10, 2011 9:11 PM by Chocking in Miami

If you live in a non-smoking building, that has always been that way (which is rare), you have a valid complaint. If not, you're being an annoying neighbor.  
The amount of smoke that will likely seep into your unit from another with proper insulation is tiny, and you likely have worse chemicals seeping up from your carpets, furniture, and plastics in your home. 
If being in near proximity to people who may have (perfectly legal) habits you dislike bothers you, I suggest you move to a lower-density housing environment, or seeking a condo building that shares your values. 

posted @ Wednesday, October 19, 2011 11:03 PM by SmokersHaveRightsToo

I'm experiencing the same situation with my neighbor down stairs from me. 
I've live in a house converted into 3 seperate apartments for almost two years. The apt above be has been vacant for several months and she lives below. NOT once in nearly two years has she ever complained to me about cigarette smoke seeping into her unit untill a the landlord switched new property management this early fall. Never once. Now suddenly her place is "thick" with smoke and its intolerable for her. Did I mention she's a smoker too? Oh! But she smokes outside on the front and back porches she has direct access to, so the story goes. I sincerely don't know this for a fact as I never see her as she's rather cold and unapproachable, but I'll assume this is true. 
I just renewed the same lease this last august with the old property management before the switch was made...only 3 months ago. There is absolutely NOTHING in my lease that's states a no smoking clause-ive re-read it 3 times. Girl downstairs complains to new management and now new management says I can't smoke and it says so on the lease...again no such clause is on this lease. 
This is unbelievable. I've both asked others I know that are in the business of property management and done research and all seem to make a clear case this is not legal. I have neither signed nor made any agreement of these terms.  
Just to feel an extra cushion of confidence...can anyone confirm this for me. I live in pgh,pa btw.

posted @ Tuesday, December 06, 2011 8:29 PM by jessica

We have been living in our condo for a couple of years now, and they have never had a problem with us smoking inside. I wonder if you switched to e-cigarettes if they'd still have a problem with it. Some people really just don't understand how hard it can be to quit smoking. http://superpuffecig.com/product-category/vapes

posted @ Tuesday, August 26, 2014 4:53 PM by Trevor Smith

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