Renters banned from smoking and having bbqs

Strata laws give landlords new powers

Are you renting? Did you know that new laws can give your landlord the power to ban you from smoking or having a bbq on your balcony?


Yep. Laws that have just come into effect in New South Wales can prohibit apartment tenants from smoking cigarettes or having a barbecue on their own balcony.

And residents who refuse to comply may face fines of up to $1100 for a first offence, and $2200 for a second offence.

Who’s affected?

  • These are some of more than 90 updates to NSW Strata Laws, effective from 30 November 2016.
  • More than 2 million people rent, own or manage apartments in NSW.
  • Apartment complexes can choose whether they want to adopt the new regulations.
  • Many complexes may choose to compromise by creating new smoking and barbecuing zones.

What are the implications?

  • These reforms will make it easier for residents to complain about their neighbours cigarette or BBQ smoke blowing into their homes.
  • Those warned who choose to ignore the requests to stop can be fined a maximum of $1100 for their first offence, and $2200 for their second.
  • Money from these fines will effectively go to landlords, as they’re paid to the building’s owner’s corporation.
  • So look out. This means your apartment’s Body Corporate may soon be motivated to be on the warpath, as there’s money in it for them!

Tell us what you think!

  • Regardless of what state or territory you live in, these new NSW laws may be a sign of things to come for renters across Australia.

What do you think of the new laws?

Do you think your neighbours and landlord should be able to have a say on what you do on your own balcony or outdoor area?