Why should I make my building smoke-free?

Smoke-free housing will not only save you time and money, but it is also in high demand among Albertans. Find out the facts and stats and benefits of smoke-free housing.

Is there a demand for smoke-free rental properties in Alberta?

Yes. Seven out of 10 Albertans who currently live in multi-unit housing would choose to live in a smoke-free building. That is a significant majority of your potential market.

Alberta’s young-adult residents report the strongest desire for smoke-free housing. 18 to 34-year-olds desire smoke-free housing because they have grown up in a society where exposure to second-hand tobacco smoke is not a social norm. Many don’t remember a time when being exposed to smoke in restaurants and bars was common. Fewer and fewer of them are choosing to start smoking to begin with. As tobacco legislation continues to shape our social reality, and, as the dangers of smoking become better known, demand for smoke-free housing is only going to continue to increase. However, while demand is high, the availability of smoke-free multi-unit housing in Alberta is limited.

It is also important to understand that there are many Albertan tenants who smoke, but they don’t necessarily smoke in their homes. Many make a deliberate decision to keep their property smoke-free in order to protect either their property or their loved ones. You may be surprised how many would choose to live in a smoke-free home when presented with the option.

A smoke-free policy is not a no-smoker policy and should never be portrayed as such.

Is smoke mitigation enough?

No; air filters, purifiers and ventilation systems cannot eliminate second-hand smoke. They may remove some of the smoke and larger particles from the air, but they will not remove the smaller particles or gases found in second-hand smoke.

The American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE), the world’s leading association of heating and air conditioning engineers whose indoor air-quality standards are followed internationally, indicates that there is no acceptable ventilation system that can protect individuals exposed to second-hand smoke.

In 2005, James Repace, an internationally recognized second-hand smoke physicist, conducted a review for ASHRAE on controlling tobacco smoke. He concluded that “ventilation technology cannot possibly achieve acceptable indoor air quality in the presence of smoking, leaving smoking bans as the only alternative.”

How can I advertise my smoke-free building?

Spread the word about your smoke-free policy anywhere you currently list information about your properties.


  • your application form
  • your website
  • your portfolio in third-party directories
  • other marketing and advertising materials

Plus, we have an online directory to help residents find smoke-free housing, so list your property there to advertise even further.

Where can I find more information about smoke-free housing?

This website is full of information about smoke-free policies, including the benefits of a smoke-free environment and how to go about creating a policy for your building. There are also many tools and resources to help you throughout the process. 

For more detailed information, download our comprehensive guidebook on smoke-free policies for rental properties or contact us to order a print copy.