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Community health
Smoke-free housing

Clark County Landlord's Guide to Smoke-free Policies (PDF)       This recently updated resource provides guidance on no-smoking policies for both tobacco and marijuana, and includes information from the Central Vancouver landlord survey, with testimonials from local landlords who have successfully implemented no-smoking rules.

A recent study (PDF) in Central Vancouver found that half of all rental properties surveyed are covered by a no-in unit smoking rule. Almost three-quarters of landlords who have a no-smoking rule say that the rule makes it easier to find good tenants. A no-smoking rule is a win-win for landlords and residents!

Rental housing

Landlords and property owners have many reasons for implementing a no-smoking rule for their properties, including:

  • Market demand
  • Reduced cleaning and maintenance costs
  • Protecting property from fire (PDF)
  • It's legal to prohibit smoking inside your rental units
  • Avoid liability
  • Protecting the health of your tenants

Resources

Signage
Smoke-free property signSmoke-free building signSmokefree Property and Smokefree Building signage helps promote your property to prospective residents who are looking for a smokefree apartment home. Signage also reinforces for residents and guests that this is a smokefree community. Signs are 4 ¼“ by 5 ½“, available as a sticker or window cling. To request free signage, call (360) 397-8000 ext. 7378 or email theresa.cross@clark.wa.gov.

Condominiums and community associations

Public Health supports policies that protect people from involuntary exposure to secondhand smoke in multi-unit housing. More and more landlords have made the decision to put a no-smoking policy in place at their rental properties.

If your homeowner or community association is thinking about adopting a no-smoking rule, below are tools to help you move forward.

These materials are for informational purposes only and are not a substitute for obtaining legal advice. Consult an attorney to assist you in developing a no-smoking rule and amending your governing documents.

These materials were developed in collaboration with the Oregon Smoke-free Housing Project and members of the Oregon Chapter of Community Association Institute in Portland, OR. Many thanks to Minnesota's Live Smoke Free, the Public Health Law Center, and the Massachusett's Smoke-free Housing Project for generously sharing their materials for adaptation.

Secondhand smoke

Secondhand tobacco smoke (SHS), also known as environmental tobacco smoke (ETS), is a mix of smoke coming from the end of a burning tobacco product and smoke exhaled by smokers. This complex mixture has more than 4,000 chemicals, 50 of which are known to cause cancer in humans. The 2006 Report of the Surgeon General confirms that secondhand smoke is not only dangerous, it's a killer. In early 2005, the California Air Resources Board identified secondhand smoke as a toxic air contaminant. Both of these agencies warn that no amount of secondhand smoke exposure is safe.

People exposed to SHS are more likely to develop a host of preventable diseases including lung cancer, coronary heart disease, and breast cancer, especially in younger, primarily pre-menopausal women. Each year in the United States, secondhand smoke is responsible for approximately 3,000 lung cancer deaths and tens of thousands of coronary heart disease deaths among people who have never smoked. For more information about secondhand smoke, go to

More information

For more information, please call (360) 397-8000 ext. 7378.

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Spanish contact information

(360) 397-8000 ext. 7205

Russian contact information

(360) 397-8000 ext. 7214