Let's be clear. Smoke-free housing is about saving property managers money and hassle. It's about giving residents healthier, safer places to live. It's not about singling out smokers.

It's perfectly legal. (And perfectly logical.)

Property owners have the right to make their buildings 100% smoke-free. And residents have the right to ask for safer, smoke-free housing policies. You just need the right resources to get started.

wismokefreehousing.com provides educational information only. Please seek an attorney for legal advice.

Smoke-free housing is more popular.

Renters desire smoke-free housing and will make sacrifices to live in a smoke-free building,
such as pay more or travel more for work.

For Owners & Managers

Your rental property is an investment.
Protect it-and make it more profitable-
with smart smoke-free housing policies.

Smoke-free housing is more profitable.

A smoked-in unit can cost up to 6 times as much to clean. The solution is clear.

The Benefits

Cleaner units. Faster turnovers. Healthier residents. There are plenty of reasons to go smoke-free.

Smoke-free buildings save you time and money.

  • They're easier to clean: Removing smoky odors and residue is time-consuming.
  • They're less dangerous: Without the risk of smoking-related fires, your insurance premiums may go down.
  • They're popular: 72% of Wisconsin residents who keep their units smoke-free (but live in buildings that allow smoking) would prefer a smoke-free building.


The Benefits of Smoke-free Housing »

Smoke-free housing policies are legal, like any other lease clause.

  • Public or private: Enacting a smoke-free housing policy in public or privately-owned housing is legal.
  • Indoors and out: You can make your entire property smoke-free, including all apartment units and outdoor spaces.
  • They're less of a legal liability: Without a smoke-free housing policy, property owners may be open to legal action from residents exposed to secondhand smoke.


Smoke-free Housing Legal Q & A »
Smoke-free Housing: Reasonable Accdommodations »

Smoke-free buildings are safer and healthier.

  • There is less risk of fire: Smoking is still the leading cause of fire deaths in the US.
  • There are fewer unhealthy chemicals: Cigarette smoke contains hundreds of chemicals, toxins and cancer-causers that can coat surfaces and irritate the skin.
  • The air everyone shares is cleaner: Up to 60% of the air (or secondhand smoke) leaving an apartment leaks into the unit next door. Secondhand smoke can't be contained.
  • 1 in 3 nonsmokers in rental housing are exposed to secondhand smoke.


Secondhand Smoke Health Risks »

wismokefreehousing.com provides educational information only. Please seek an attorney for legal advice.

Making the Switch

Going smoke-free in your buildings is easy. Just let residents know what to expect.

You can make your entire property smoke-free, from the units to the outdoor spaces. In fact, smoking is already prohibited in common areas like stairways and laundry rooms in Wisconsin. And smoke-free housing policies can be enacted and enforced just like any of your other property policies. To find out more about Wisconsin's statewide smoke-free air law, visit wibettersmokefree.com.

Need help making the switch? Check out our step-by-step guides for tips and customizable templates, including letters for residents, lease addendums, signage and more.


Going Smoke-free Signage

Building Signage

  1. This building is smoke-free. (English & Spanish) »
  2. This building is smoke-free, including electronic cigarettes. (English & Spanish) »

Property Signage
  1. This property is smoke-free. (English & Spanish) »
  2. This property is smoke-free, including electronic cigarettes. (English & Spanish) »

Get help going smoke-free

Select your county for contact info:

If you are interested in signage, please contact your local county contact (see drop-down above).
To order heavier duty non-smoking signage, please visit the Great American Property Management Products website and select your sign. GAPMP is not a partner of wismokefreehousing.com or Clear Gains. Clicking this link leads to an off-site vendor.

wismokefreehousing.com provides educational information only. Please seek an attorney for legal advice.

For Residents

Your family, your guests, even your pets. Everyone has the right to breathe healthy, smoke-free air. Especially at home.

Smoke-free housing is healthier.

Breathing secondhand smoke increases the risk of heart disease by up to 30%. It's time to clear the air.

Health Hazards

Because of secondhand smoke, you don't have to use tobacco products to feel their unhealthy effects.

Secondhand smoke is a major health problem.

  • It is toxic: There are more than 7,000 chemical compounds in secondhand smoke, including many recognizable poisons and 40 known cancer-causers.
  • It causes disease: Secondhand smoke causes heart disease, lung cancer, asthma, high blood pressure and more.
  • It leads to illness: Secondhand smoke irritates the eyes, skin, nose and throat. It causes ear and respiratory infections and can have a long-term effect on residents' health—especially children.
  • It doesn't take much: The Surgeon General warns there is no risk-free level of exposure to secondhand smoke.


Secondhand Smoke Health Risks »

Secondhand smoke cannot be contained.

  • It travels fast: Secondhand smoke moves from unit to unit, along baseboards, through electrical outlets and light fixtures, shared ventilation and in and our of windows and doors.
  • It clings to surfaces: Secondhand smoke isn't just in the air. Its toxins linger in carpet and fabrics, and invisibly coats walls, countertops and tables.
  • Ventilation systems are ineffective: The sight and smell of secondhand smoke may diminish, but ventilation can't eliminate the chemical residue, and shared systems may spread the problem.


Secondhand Smoke Health Risks»

If a smoke-free environment is important to you, tell your property manager. Because you are important to them.

Make sure your property manager knows about the clear benefits of going smoke-free:

  • It is legal: Property managers have the legal right to make their buildings smoke-free.
  • It protects residents: Smoking is already prohibited in housing common areas, like entrances, laundry rooms and basements. Smoke-free housing policies just extend that protection.
  • It can be enforced: There are federal laws that can help people with serious health conditions seek reasonable accommodations from property managers, including smoke-free housing policies.


Secondhand Smoke Health Risks »

Secondhand Smoke Residents' Rights »

Help to Quit

Don't let tobacco beat you. Call 1-800-QUIT-NOW for free tailored one-on-one coaching and support, available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Or check out other Cessation Resources.