In downtown Boston, we have a lot of rules about where people can and can not smoke. I can’t think of any public place where smoking is allowed indoors, certainly not in bars or restaurants.
When it comes to apartment buildings, condos, and lofts smoking is prohibited in common areas.
Recently I have been contacted by a Boston real estate blog reader about a situation involving Beacon Hill townhouse where the occupants of one home is a nonsmoker and the people on the other side of the wall ( but a separate home not in an association) smokes. The non-smoker got there first, both of the buildings are older, which is usually the case in Beacon Hill, and the non-smoking owners are having a fit about the smell of cigarette smoke coming through the common wall. The non-smokers are also concerned about air quality in their homes.
Something to take into consideration before buying a Beacon Hill townhome with a common wall. Even if you find out that your neighbors don’t smoke you never know when a smoker will move in. If you are a smoker you may find that laws will be enacted which may prevent you from smoking in your own home if secondhand smoke travels inside your neighbor’s homes.
I’m not a lawyer, I’m not sure who has the better case here. So here are my final thoughts:
My suggestion is to have a buyer’s home inspection and to get help from the inspector to determine if secondhand smoke can leak through the common wall. The way some units are built it is not an issue.
Also check this website: http://www.smokefreecoalition.org/