To ask my neighbour to take her smoking outside...

(31 Posts)
nyldn Fri 04-Apr-14 19:31:54

We have a new neighbour in the flat below us and it's clear that she's smoking inside. We can smell it in ours. Our lease says no smoking, so I assume hers would as well. I generally wouldn't care too much other than disliking it, but I'm pregnant and it's a concern for me that the baby will be breathing it in constantly. WIBU to ask her to please take it outside? I don't want to go straight to the landlord and cause unnecessary tensions...

expatinscotland Fri 04-Apr-14 19:34:40

Mind your own business. She may own it for all you know.

fedupworking Fri 04-Apr-14 19:35:43

She's paying for it so can do what she wants in it

really1234 Fri 04-Apr-14 19:35:43

Surely it is her business if she can smell it in her flat?!?!

really1234 Fri 04-Apr-14 19:35:59

And that is the same whether the person owns the flat or not.

expatinscotland Fri 04-Apr-14 19:36:52

It's not your business what a person does in one's own home.

hiddenhome Fri 04-Apr-14 19:38:13

The smoke won't actually be drifting into your flat though. It'll just be the smell. Can you tell where it's getting through and seal it up somehow?

Beanymonster Fri 04-Apr-14 19:38:17

I'd ask her nicely, tbh, she might be really reasonable..
And when she isn't at least you tried?! I'd go passive agressive and mention to letting agent that your flat smells like you smoke due to the lady smoking in hers downstairs, you don't smoke, and wish it to be documented so you arnt liable to hefty cleaning costs when you leave..

expatinscotland Fri 04-Apr-14 19:38:22

No, it's not the same. I don't smoke, but if some busybody came over and tried to dictate to me not to in my own home I'd tell them where to stick it.

deakymom Fri 04-Apr-14 19:38:28

if she is renting and the lease states no smoking she shouldn't smoke! but the smoke will drift up to you anyway if you open your windows sad

softlysoftly Fri 04-Apr-14 19:38:40

I'd report it to her landlord then if she's not allowed it'll stop and if itis then you can do nothing

WaterLoadaCack Fri 04-Apr-14 19:40:49

If her lease says she shouldnt smoke inside the building, then thats that.

expat sure its ok for someone to do as they please in their own home but if it begins to bother the neighbours, whether it be noise or smoke then of course it becomes an issue.

As much as the smoker is allowed to enjoy doing as they like, the OP is allowed to be comfortable and enjoy her own home.

If something infringes that, whatever it may be, then it becomes an issue.

squoosh Fri 04-Apr-14 19:41:02

I can sympathise.

The flat below mine was once let to a smoker. I had no qualms about my health but it absolutely stank my flat out. I'd wake up in the morning to a bedroom reeking of fags. I put a grovelly note through his door sweetly asking if they didn't mind not smoking in their bedroom and I did so hope that wouldn't be an inconvenience to him blah blah blah.

Thankfully he didn't stay long and I was straight on the phone to the landlords to make sure the next tenants weren't smokers.

I would raise the matter with her, pretty much as you have done here. Tell her that the cigarette smoke leaks into your flat and you are concerned for your baby's health and the fact that your carpets, curtains, sofa will start to stink of it too. If she persists then yes, I would go to the landlord, at the very least to cover my back and assure him that the smoking is not taking place inside your flat. You might otherwise have trouble in the future with your landlord believing that you have broken the terms of your lease.

If I had a no smoking clause in my contract and my flat smelt of cigarette smoke I'd be telling my landlord immediately, in writing, to make sure I had it documented just in case they tried to say I'd clearly been smoking and was thus in breach. They could withhold part of your deposit for cleaning even though it's not you. If your flat smells and you've never mentioned it how would you prove it wasn't you? You couldn't.

ikeaismylocal Fri 04-Apr-14 19:44:19

YANBU. Smoke can be really dangerous to small babies and fetuses.

If you can smell the smoke the toxins will be in your home, smoke doesn't just drop all of it's toxins when it seeps through to other people's homes.

I would talk to her, explain your pregnant and will soon have a tiny baby, explain the risks (sids was the one I was most worried about when we were in a similar situation) the advice may well have changed since she had children. Point out that you are not allowed to smoke inside and ask her if her lease is the same.

If she doesn't stop call the landlord.

Good luck!

BirdieWhirlie Fri 04-Apr-14 19:46:16

Of course it's her business what the neighbour does downstairs... if it's drifting upstairs. Likewise playing insanely loud music. The second hand smoke could have profound affects on the OP and her baby, depending how much is wafting upwards into the OP's flat.

I've never understood why they outlaw smoking in public spaces, but leave you free to suffer against your will in a block of flats. I can choose not to enter a smoky pub... but I have to go home.

JCDenton Fri 04-Apr-14 19:49:45

I sympathise too, next door smoke and it stinks. Sorry, smokers, everyone should be able to indulge in their own home but fag smoke is a special kind of nasty. I grew up in a smoking household and couldn't smell it at all then, now I haven't lived there for 15 years I can, and it's a special, cloying kind of stink which hurts my throat.

They had a heavy session a few nights ago and the thick smell of stale smoke just hung in the air all bloody night, it was awful.

You can't make her do anything, but you should ask nicely, I'd be mortified if it was me causing displeasure to next door with something I did.

Two Neutradols under the floorboards seem to be holding the smell off for me, but I've had a lot of false dawns with keeping the smell away.

DrankSangriaInThePark Fri 04-Apr-14 20:12:08

YANBU to not like it, but of course you can't dictate what someone does in their own home!

Our upstairs neighbour must smoke 60 a day but I wouldn't dream of telling him not to!

squoosh Fri 04-Apr-14 20:12:50

Smoke rises, much worse when it's a downstairs neighbour.

Waltonswatcher1 Fri 04-Apr-14 20:18:03

So sorry op .
That's a mare , I would have to move .
I can't stand it .

Koothrapanties Fri 04-Apr-14 21:02:26

I completely sympathise op. We have recently moved and the guy below us was a chain smoker (he has just moved out) and the smoke was coming up into the cupboard in the hallway and the bathroom. I have a baby dd who has health problems and I was very concerned about it. I contacted our LL and they sent someone round to seal up the holes around the pipes. As it turns out there was a massive hole under the flooring in the cupboard.

If you have no luck talking to your neighbour or if you decide not to, perhaps you could look to see if you can find any holes and seal them with expanding foam?

Ericaequites Fri 04-Apr-14 21:07:23

You're being very precious to complain about what a neighbor does in her own home.

squoosh Fri 04-Apr-14 21:08:56

How is it precious if the smoke is making her home smell? I'm an easygoing neighbour, don't mind parties that go on all night etc, but someone else's cigarette smoke invading my home is a different matter.

chicaguapa Fri 04-Apr-14 21:09:47

If she goes outside it will come in through the vents in the windows anyway. I sympathise. I've never understood why it's ok to pollute someone else's house with cigarettes but not noise. confused

BirdieWhirlie Fri 04-Apr-14 21:14:48

If she won't take it outside after a polite request, you could always start doing street dance sessions in your flat - best done about 5am for maximum health benefits. Or indoor jogging? Something that requires hammering on the floor? After all, she would be precious and unreasonable to dictate to you what you do in your own home.

NeedsAsockamnesty Fri 04-Apr-14 21:18:00

I wonder how enforceable that clause is

nyldn Fri 04-Apr-14 21:33:59

Thanks for the opinions. I do feel that people should be able to do what they want in their own home, however, it's a rented home and if the owner of the building has put a no smoking clause in my lease, I'm sure it's in hers as well. If my flat didn't smell because of it, I wouldn't take issue. Someone would certainly complain about a constantly barking dog if there was a no pet clause, right? Isn't this basically the same thing, only actually a bigger problem in my opinion as it's a health concern...

OooOooTheMonkey Fri 04-Apr-14 22:32:07

YANBU. Our downstairs neighbour smokes WEED and it sometimes comes up. We've put extra insulation down all the gaps but since having dd my dp went and had a word. She was a bit stoned mortified (esp as our other neighbours are police officers --face palm--) and we've had a vague whiff since but it's been mainly disgusting incense sticks since hmm

Joysmum Fri 04-Apr-14 22:53:13

I'm a LL and my tenancy agreements have no pets and no smoking clauses. Trouble is, these are basically unenforceable as the tenant has the right to quiet enjoyment of their home and if it goes before a judge for a repossession order, there's no guarantee it'll be successful so it's not worth it, how could I gather proof or habitual smoking in the property? All I can do as a LL is to not extend the tenancy when it expires and apply to retain some of the deposit for the smoke damage and deep cleaning.

Mimishimi Fri 04-Apr-14 23:03:18

It depends. Does she rent the property or own it? If it's the latter there is probably not too much you can do about it. If the former, you could check with the landlord to see what her lease clauses are. Also, if she does go outside to smoke, there's a good chance you will get more smoke drifting into your flat through the windows.

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