Asked and AnsweredI don’t smoke, but the smell of smoke is wafting into my apartment from my neighbor. Is there anything that can be done to remedy this condition?
Possibly. Second hand smoke is a hot button issue in general and can be a very emotional topic for co-ops and condos. Unless a building has amended its organization documents (which is not an easy task as unit owner approval is required in most cases, unless the sponsor still controls the building), to restrict its unit owners from smoking anywhere in the building, imposing restrictions on this behavior in individual apartments may be extremely difficult, if not impossible. When a second hand smoke complaint is made, the managing agent will have the ventilation checked in the complaining person’s apartment, in the hallway and in the suspected smoker's apartment. Sometimes tweaking the air handler or installing air purifiers can improve the situation. In many cases, the issue doesn’t go away until the smoker sells his or her apartment. Litigation of quality of life issues can be very expensive for all involved and often provides limited or unsatisfactory results. Pursuing an equitable result through the cooperation of the parties, with the assistance of your managing agent and co-op or condo board, is the better way to go.