The ability to smoke in public and at apartment communities has been under attack for years. But what about rental homes? Often times an owner plans to rent their home for only a year or two. Certainly the owner does not want to receive the house back with the smell of cigarette smoke still lingering in the house. Even if the renter was a model tenant in all other respects, cigarette smoke can be very destructive. Smoking turns walls yellow (new paint job $1,200), it destroys carpets ($1,500), and it requires a deeper cleaning, perhaps with a deionizer ($500). The cost of all this stress…priceless.
The best approach? In all of our homes we have a no smoking policy. However, we do allow the renter to smoke outside, perhaps on the porch or deck. However, this issue can be a hard one to enforce. What if it’s cold outside? Who wants to stand outside when it’s only 35 degrees? The renter is easily tempted to stand inside the house or close to an open window and light up. Inevitably, smoke gets in the house and the home owner smells the evidence. A good suggestion is to do an inspection within the first month or two of a new lease if you know the renter smokes. Catch the problem early. Then do another inspection a few months later to make sure. If you detect smoke after the tenant moves out, a landlord can charge the tenant for the remediation of the smell. But this can be a tricky proposition. It is always best to be pro-active and keep this issue from becoming a possible expense. It is less ideal to react and pursue a vacating tenant for money.
You can always call Rappold Property Management with questions about your single family home investment.
Rappold Property Management, LLC
1125 SE Madison Street, suite #201
Portland, OR 97214
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I absolutely agree. This has been a longstanding requirement in my properties, whether they are renting or leasing. Smoke not only discolors the interior, but also the after effects create a health hazard. My renters must have a renters policy which names me as an additional insured party and also requires annual inspections of fire, smoke and carbon monoxide. If they are in violation, their monthly rent or lease payment is increased by as much as 20%. They can smoke in the parking lot, near a freeway, but not on my property or anyplace to disturb other guests or children (and event pets).
This is like buying gasoline.. I have one price for non smokers, another price for smokers