Just had a new neighbor move into the apartment complex next to mine this weekend. First thing I noticed was the cigarette smoke infiltrating the common hallways and into my apartment even though we have separate forced air systems. I've got asthma so I steer away from places with second hand smoke. What irritates me is that last month I spoke with the Manager and advised her not put anyone in there who was a smoker. Goes to show you that money is more important that the tenants health concerns. I live in Michigan where they are behind the times with non-smoking communities or apartment complexes. I'm going to have a few choice words for her come Tuesday. I just renewed my lease a couple months ago so I gotta put up with this nonsense for another 10 months.
I got of a lease due to the same thing. My clothes reeked of smoke and when I moved out and took pictures off of the wall, the walls were yellow except where the pictures had been. Bitch and you can probably get out of the lease.
Wow. I used to smoke (3 years clean), but I still didn't smoke in my appartment. I'm surprised that the owner doesn't ban smoking in your appartment complex given how much it costs to get the smell out when the tenant leaves.
That is so white-trash. I would be gone in a second.. no way I could stick around and live next to that redneck piece of shit. I fucking hate smokers.
Doogie's right. Leases may be "legally binding," but if you bitch enough you can usually get out of them. Since you have asthma, I can almost guarantee that you'd be able to get out of it. Another option would be to go talk to your new neighbor, explain your situation to them, and see if they'd be willing to only smoke out on their porch/balcony.
If you have a problem getting out of the place, consult a lawyer in your jurisdiction. There is a legal doctrine called "constructive eviction." Basically, if the landlord makes the place uninhabitable (or allows it to become uninhabitable), you may be able to walk away from the lease. Good luck.
...then if that doesn't work...throw them off it...
You can probably break the lease on the grounds that the place is now uninhabitable for you. Get a 'note from your doctor' that you can not live there for health reasons. Give them the full notice required by your lease and then go. I was going to do something similar due to a water leak in my last apartment (the tenant above me had a leaky toilet that drained into my bathtub. yuk) Leverage is a beautiful thing.
Write a nice polite letter that reminds them that you told them you couldn't live near a smoker - if you did that in writing you're golden - then tell them you need to break your lease and move for health reasons. Tell them you can provide the necessary medical records to back up your reasons for leaveing. In my experience, if you have your ducks in a row they will let you out to avoid the headache of dealing with you if you decide to make a huge production of it. Also, you could offer to stay for 60 days and help them find a new tenant. Just have a few of your friends call and say that you sent them to look at the apartment.