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Forum Spotlight: Tenant smoking in property

Victoria Barker
Written by Victoria Barker

This week, a report published by Action on Smoking and Health People found that people who live in rented housing are more than twice as likely to smoke as home owners.

This week our Forum Spotlight looks a recent question that a landlord asked about what they should do about one of their tenants, who seems to be ignoring their request to stop smoking at the property.

The situation

The property is a five bed HMO, and all five tenants are on a short hold tenancy agreement. The landlord said that one of the tenants in the property is constantly smoking in her room, and this is starting to get on the nerves of the tenant who lives in the next door room.

The landlord said that the other tenants in the property have already tried to ask the smoking tenant to go outside to smoke several times, the request has been ignored.

One of the tenants in the property is even claiming that they are struggling with breathing problems from passive smoking caused by the tenant continuing to smoke.

The landlord wanted to know what they should do next, and asked for advice from the other landlords on our Forum.

Response from our Landlord Advice Team

In this situation, our landlord advice team recommended that firstly this landlord writes a written tenancy warning to the tenant, underling that the tenant is acting in breach in the tenancy agreement by continuing to smoke in the property and ignoring requests to stop.

This warning should be slid under the bedroom door, and the landlord should also keep copies on yourself.

The landlord should also inform her in writing that she is risking her deposit because it is very likely that the whole room will need redecorating due to  the smoking, mentioning as well that other tenants have complained about the smoking issue and  that her behaviour will be reflective in any future referencing.

What does the law say?

Our Landlord Advice Team manager Rupinder Aujla said:

“Smoking in properties is a bit of a grey area. Landlords can say no to smoking in bedrooms and communal areas but this is still difficult to police. As a suggestion landlords should make sure they have a good inventory and photographs at the start of the tenancy”.

Learn more
  • You can have a read of the original Forum Post here
  • Need advice? Join the RLA today for unlimited one to one advice, available over the phone and online.

About the author

Victoria Barker

Victoria Barker

Victoria is the Communications Officer for the RLA.

She is responsible for producing articles for our Campaigns and News Centre, the weekly E-News newsletter and media review, and creating social media content. She also contributes to our members magazine, Residential Property Investor.

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