New Neighbor hates my cigar smoking


Lowland Gorilla
All of this reminds me of the apartments we just moved out of. I never had any issues with people complaining about smoking, but rather I had some complaints about my neighbors. You see, it was a 2 story building and we were on the ground floor. The upstairs neighbors (well into their 30's) seemed to have a rather active sex life (never missed a night). However, at the time, I was still working at UPS so it was imperative that I was able to get to sleep early, which I had expressed as a concern when we were considering the place. Well, it wasn't the intercourse that was a problem. They weren't obscene or loud, but they had this ONE SPRING in their box-springs or mattress that would squeek to high hell starting about a month in.

Now, given the delicacy of the situation (and the hour), the only thing I could do was bang on the ceiling. This would fix their location that night, but it would happen again the next night and wake me up. Finally, I went to see the office manager and told her that I simply could not continue to live like that. She danced around the topic, saying they couldn't tell people what to do in their apartment, to which I replied that I didn't care what they did, but they would need to find a way to do it without waking me up literally every night. I would either have to move out or live rent free while I find a new job.

I assume she talked to them about it because it never happened again. There is no point to this story except to offer a little bit of a view of the other side of the aisle. Most people like to be outside because it doesn't smell like anything. Or it smells like nature. Or something they like. It may not be that they don't like the cigar smell, but it is definitely not what they WANT to smell. So put yourself in their shoes. Think about it before you do anything dick-ish.


I live in a neighborhood where the houses are very close together (West Coast living!) so I know that my stogie stink wafts into the neighbors' houses in the summer when their windows are open (we're one of the few houses with AC). I also live in a high-tech, immigrant community so most of my neighbors are Indian or Chinese and are accustomed to living in close quarters while still respecting everyone's privacy in a way that most native born Americans would find hard to adjust to. Everybody just minds their own business and gets along fine.

I feel for your situation as nothing's worse than a passive aggressive adversary. They'll just keep stewing until it all comes to a head and explodes instead of just talking and working something out with you.


Maturing Primate
I showed my apartment neighbors a thing or two. I bought a house and moved out. That'll show'em. Just couldn't stand to live under lordship any more - land lordship that is.


monica lewinsky
i can't stand neighbors. apartment living pushed me to get a house sooner. i bought the house and put up hedges and an eight foot fence around it. check out this site


I showed my apartment neighbors a thing or two. I bought a house and moved out. That'll show'em. Just couldn't stand to live under lordship any more - land lordship that is.

yeh and then you get some crazy homeowners association. agghhh


Elder Jungle Leader
If my neighborhood started a homeowners association, I simply would not join. We have enough room between houses that there are not too many complaints about smoking plus both of my neighbors smoke cigars also.


Get it sorted out...perhaps an alotted cigar time, or to just make a courtesy call when dones, etc?

Sometimes when we live so close to each other compromises have to be the neighbor upstairs keeps his music down, and I keep the smoke off his balcony when he's out there.


Swamp Gorilla
I see no reason why compromise can't be reached. I too, live in an apartment complex, and my neighbors are avid cigarette smokers, however they loathe my cigar smoke for some reason. I hate the piles of butts they leave on the ground outside of their apt on the lawn and sidewalk.

So I made a courtesy call one day and spoke frankly with them. We reached an agreement, they bought a sand bucket and use it, I make a point to try and keep my smoking away from them while they are outside, and we agreed that first one out has fist call on location. Almost a year later, we still hold to this agreement very well.

People who want to be obstinate and childish about things probably won't change, but if you can stand up and say "Hey, I tried to work it out and reach a compromise, but they were unreasonable anyway" then you can simply ignore them and go about life as normal. You have moral high ground, and they're not willing to compromise you can't change that, but you can tell the landlord that you've tried to reach an agreement and it was to no avail.

I agree with one thing...praise down South...complaining about smoke is akin to saying you're anti-confederate, and won't make you many friends :)


A Cat eating Spaghetti...
I had a neighbor complain about my cigar smoking INSIDE my apartment, claiming it was coming out from under my door and going through theirs...across a mass wind tunnel that prevents the usage of any doormat for fear of losing it to the wind...they went to the leasing agents who asked me, in person, over a cigar, if I was smoking in my apartment...what was I going to They were smoking with me for the love of god...after the meeting in my place they went on their way.... I came home later that night to find my biatch of a neighbor out on her patio smoking Marb light Menthols....I told her her smoking was the reason that cats like mine end up with lung cancer....I have not had a complaint since...HELL...I even gave her all the cigarettes I got at the IPCPR...she baked me some badass Chocolate Chip cookies in trade! In other words....screw your neighbors and their opinions....


Maturing Primate
damn there are a lot of posts in this thread.

well there is one solution that might be a good one, depending on if your neighbor is a jerk or not.

my buddy lives next to an older man who would smoke his pipe when doing things outside and my buddy's family would be able to smell it from their yard and they think that it smeels really good. so my suggestion would be to get a pipe and some good smelling pipe tobacco and see if that works.:2

if not, tell him to go :bnhimself! haha.

just kidding... dont do that!

Don Fernando

Lowland Gorilla
I live in an apartment and have the same problem. My neighbor doesn't slam a glass door, but she insists on coming halfway down the stairs and glaring at me as I sit on my patio and smoke. Every time I just say something to the effect of "Can I help you?" and every time she stomps up the steps cussing at me in Spanish. If she was nice about it, or at least talked to me, then I'd consider smoking at different times or figure something out. Staring at me and not saying anything is not going to make me change. Until something is said, I'll enjoy my smokes as I have been in (relative) peace and quiet.
Blow her a kiss next time, maybe she's just in love with you and to shy to admit :r


Young Chimp
First I'm not an attorney. However, I found this Q&A recently and thought it would be helpful for understanding what you might be up against.

Tenants pressure landlord to change smoking policy
Rent it Right
August 14, 2008
By Janet Portman
Inman News

Q: We own a fourplex apartment building with long-term tenants in every unit. The couple upstairs has asked us to implement a smoke-free policy for the building. They claim that the smoke from their downstairs neighbors enters their unit no matter what they do, through the staircase and even the adjacent windows. The downstairs people are perfectly fine tenants, have no intention of quitting, and tell us that we can't do anything about it. What should we do? --Wes and Judy Z.

A: What do you want to do? In this area, because the law is relatively unformed, you have some options. If you want to declare your property to be smoke-free, you can write this rule into every tenant's lease or rental agreement. No court has held that smokers have a right to smoke that trumps a landlord's no-smoking policy, nor have smokers been declared a "protected class," like people of a certain race or religion, giving them protection from onerous treatment. Of course, you'll have to wait until your tenants' leases are up before you implement your new lease rule. If tenants are renting month to month, you can announce a change with proper notice, which is 30 days in most states.

If you don't want to have a smoke-free property, you can do nothing (and probably lose the tenants upstairs). But this doesn't mean that your complaining tenants could not, in the end, stay and have their way. Tenants are using lots of creative strategies to force owners to ban smoking in their multi-unit buildings -- and they're doing it without waiting for owners to announce new policies in new leases or amended rental agreements. Here's how these tenants are clearing the air:

  • Smoking is a nuisance. A legal nuisance is any condition that's harmful to health or morals, such as accumulated garbage or the constant presence of drug dealers. Tenants have successfully argued that smoke is unhealthy (there's plenty of evidence on the effects of secondhand smoke to back them up). If a judge buys this argument, it doesn't matter what everyone's leases say -- the activity has to stop.
  • Smoking violates the warranty of habitability. By state law everywhere but Colorado and Arkansas, landlords must maintain fit and safe rental housing. When they fail to do so, courts will step in and order them to shape up, and in some states, tenants can repair problems and deduct the cost form their rent (or withhold rent altogether until the issue is addressed). Tenants have convinced judges that secondhand smoke is so harmful that it creates an unsafe building. When that happens, the landlord has the necessary ammunition to tell smoking tenants to stop, no matter what their leases say.
  • Smoking violates the covenant of quiet enjoyment. This quaint-sounding phrase actually packs quite a punch -- it means that tenants have the right to peacefully enjoy the homes they rent. Tenants who can't breathe easily because of seeping smoke are hardly enjoying their rented home. Landlords must remedy any problem that substantially interferes with the tenant's right to quiet enjoyment.
  • Secondhand smoke may harm tenants with disabilities. In extreme cases, secondhand smoke can exacerbate an otherwise nondisabling condition. For example, someone with mild asthma could experience severe difficulties as the result of inhaling smoke. This person might qualify as a person with disability under the Fair Housing Act, because the smoke significantly interferes with a major life activity: breathing. You'd be legally bound to address the problem by doing all you could to stop the smoking. (It's unlikely that a judge handling a fair housing complaint could directly order the neighbors to quit, however.)
Finally, your local government may someday have something to say. Cities all around the country are passing ordinances that prohibit smoking in multifamily housing. These ordinances (which typically have a "grandfather clause" for current lease-holding tenants) are usually supported by landlord constituents, simply because smoke-free rentals have a marketing edge over properties with smoke.

Janet Portman is an attorney and managing editor at Nolo. She specializes in landlord/tenant law and is co-author of "Every Landlord's Legal Guide" and "Every Tenant's Legal Guide." She can be reached at
Copyright 2008 Janet Portman



So I lived in the same apartments in anaheim going on 4 years. My fiancee and I have seen neighbors come and go...

About a month ago a new neighbor moves in the apartment above us and everytime I go to light up a stogie and start smoking it they will slam their glass sliding door shut and all their windows too.

The funniest thing about it is they will re open the sliding door to see if they can still smell smoke many times while Im smoking (usually an hour or two) and if they still smell smoke they will slam the door shut again. :r

Anyone else have problems like this with neighbors or other people in general?
No but I don't live in Anaheim either. :D