5. Residential accommodation

Smoke free legislation applies to communal parts of residential properties, particularly those that employ any staff. All communal areas must be smoke free. These areas include:

  • shared stairways in blocks of flats
  • lifts
  • common parts in houses converted into flats
  • areas where people may share a kitchen of bathroom

You, your staff, tenants and visitors are not allowed to smoke within communal areas if those areas are wholly or substantially enclosed, and smoking rooms are not allowed.

You need to ensure that employees, tenants and visitors obey this law.

No smoking signage

The law requires smoke free premises to display prominent no smoking signs at each entrance.

No smoking signs must be A5 in size, feature the international no smoking symbol and state, in easy to read characters:

No smoking. It is against the law to smoke in these premises.

Substitute words can be used for "these premises" as long as they refer to the particular premises, eg "communal areas".

Download no smoking signage for communal areas.

If people are smoking in communal areas

It is an offence for a person to smoke in communal areas and it's an offence for management to let it continue. If it happens:

  • Draw the person's attention to the no smoking signs and tell them they are committing an offence
  • Inform the managing agent and/or notify the council on 020 7641 2000


Last updated: 9 August 2016
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