Neighbours and smoking outside

(28 Posts)
chicaguapa Wed 10-Jul-13 20:53:16

Our neighbours smoke in their garden and it comes in our windows. We also can't eat outside because when they light up, it puts us off our food. There are 3 of them; mother and two daughters, all smokers, so there's a fair regularity of this starting from 6am and up to after midnight.

I can smell it in any room in the house, not just the ones at the back. And if the windows are closed, it still comes in through the vents at the top and we can smell they're outside if we're in the room. I should also add that we're in a town house so the living room is on the first floor, which makes it worse as the smoke rises and come in though the window. It also does this in DS's room on the top floor. hmm

But I know IABU to be annoyed by this because they have the right to smoke in their garden and any outdoor space they want to do this in.

So does this right extend to music in my garden? I'm so wound up with having to sit in the house on a sweltering day with the windows closed, because of next door's filthy habit, that maybe I don't want to be a considerate neighbour anymore.

I would like to put the radio on the kitchen window sill and turn it up loud enough so I can hear it when I'm sitting in the garden. Not all day, but periodically during the day when I want to sit outside. Of course, it would be quieter than the noise limit that neighbours are allowed to make, so that it's legal, just like smoking in the garden is. But they'd probably be able to hear it in their house, especially with the windows open, and they might need to close the living room window when they're watching telly.

The irony of not actually enjoying sitting out in my garden anyway, even with music, because it smells like a pub garden isn't lost on me. smile And of course I wouldn't do this anyway.

But I would just be interested to explore the boundaries of what is ok as a considerate neighbour and what is ok because it's legal and because you have the right to do what you want in your own space. Maybe IABU to even consider the question and for thinking smoking and listening to music outside are the same thing, who knows? confused

HaroldLloyd Thu 11-Jul-13 21:08:59

I dont think your being unreasonable to ask they could just move a little further down the garden couldnt they,

Sounds like your on a hiding to nothing though.

chicaguapa Thu 11-Jul-13 22:01:08

We didn't even ask them to move. DH just wanted to open a discussion about it. confused

Is this social equivalent of herd immunity? Where the inconsiderate get to live in a civilised society created by those who are considerate?

woodlandrealm Fri 21-Mar-14 15:09:07

I have the same problem, everything was wonderful at our new house, and a month after we moved in we got new neighbors that have destroyed our peace with cigarette smoke ever since. We went through the passive aggressive window slamming phase because there was nothing else I could think of to do. I get an immediate headache when coming into contact with cigarette smoke, and sometimes begin to sneeze uncontrollably. The smoke wafts over to our yard, to the point where we can’t enjoy eating on our deck, or even gardening. Worse it gets sucked into our house when the windows and doors are open, filling the room with the scent, this issue is the most frustrating at night, when smoke fills our bedroom. We can’t just leave our windows shut, through the summer it soon becomes unbearably hot inside, and we moved here for this weather, so it brings me near to tears to lose access to that wonderful air. On top of all that, the smoke also comes through our vents somehow, so even through a freezing winter, when every window is shut tight, our kitchen will fill with the smell of smoke, and we got written up for it on our last inspection. The rental company gave us a first warning this fall to remember that no smoking is allowed in the house, because the inspector “detected a lingering smell of cigarette smoke inside the house.”

I finally wrote a very polite note to the smoker asking if he could smoke around the side of his house where his car is parked: “When you smoke in front of your house, or in your backyard the smoke is easily carried on the wind over to us, so we are hoping that if you stand around the corner of your house, that the smell will disperse somewhat before it gets to our yard. I know this is your home, usually the one place you can do whatever you feel like in peace, and I wouldn’t be bothering you if this was a problem with occasional smells from your property to ours, but this is a constant presence. This affects our everyday life, especially through the coming spring and summer months.” We are not even hopeful that will take care of the problem, but it should help.

When he continued to smoke out front by our property line and in his backyard by our garden, I talked to him, and asked if he got the note. He said that he would try to smoke around the corner, but that he will continue to smoke out front “when I get home from work, and late at night, and early in the morning”. So basically even though his phrasing was nice, his tone was mean, and his underlying message was forget it, I’m smoking right here no matter what you say.

I’ve been searching all morning for revenge, and I think I’ve got it. I can set up a battery powered fan on a little table, spray some nasty liquid on it, then turn it on toward his smoking spot. If he starts up a conversation about it, I can politely tell him that if he was around the corner of his house he would not be able to smell it as bad! :D
here is the gross liquid: http://www.liquidass.com/neighbor_revenge.html

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