October 21st
Uncategorized

You Said You Wouldn’t Smoke In the House…

You can expect to see more smokers (of all substances) out on the street with the passing of Senate Bill 332, banning tenant smoking in California. As a landlord, I talk to perspective tenants about not smoking, and tell them I don’t want smoking on the property. Now it is written into law that smoking on […]

You can expect to see more smokers (of all substances) out on the street with the passing of Senate Bill 332, banning tenant smoking in California.

As a landlord, I talk to perspective tenants about not smoking, and tell them I don’t want smoking on the property. Now it is written into law that smoking on a rental property can be prohibited, but this must be written into the lease or rental agreement.

Read the anti-smoking SB 332 to learn more: Beginning January 1, 2012, a residential landlord can prohibit the smoking of cigarettes and other tobacco products on the property, including any dwelling unit, building, other interior or exterior area, or the premises on which the property is located. For new tenants on or after January 1, 2012, the areas where smoking is prohibited must be stated in the lease or rental agreement. For preexisting tenants before 2012, a new provision prohibiting smoking is a change in the terms of tenancy that requires adequate written notice, depending on whether the tenancy is month-to-month or for a fixed term.

The question immediately comes to mind: What if a tenant agreed to not smoke on the property and the landlord finds out there was smoking? I would be inclined to write a fine clause into the lease. What do you think would be an appropriate amount to fine a tenant for smoking on a rental property when they agreed not to smoke?

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