Do I have a right to withhold rent due to a smoker in the building that has made me sick?

Asked over 1 year ago - Boston, MA

I have lived in a small apartment building for nearly two years. One of the tenants is a heavy smoker, every couple weeks or so he smokes cigars. I live on the top floor and all the smoke wafts up to my apartment. I have complained numerous times since moving in. A month ago I got a cold, which turned into bronchitis. The day after one of his cigar binges I developed a secondary infection to my bronchitis and got very sick again. I notified management and have been trying to leave my lease early. I was unable to secure a new place before my lease expires so will have to remain here for the next two months. I requested my final month rent be reduced if smoking occurred again and was refused. Landlord stated he has a right to smoke, however I feel I have a right to live in a healthy space.

Attorney answers (1)

  1. George Charles Samiotes

    Contributor Level 9


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . If this smoking is adversely affecting your health and well being you may have a right to withhold rent. To withhold rent though you must follow certain precise procedures. I would recommend consulting an attorney as to how to go about withholding rent.

    The foregoing answer does not establish an attorney client relationship, is not confidential, and should not be... more

Related Topics

Tenant rights

Tenant rights vary by state, but in general, you have the right to safe and habitable housing, privacy, and to not be discriminated against, among other things.

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