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Smoke Free Housing

Smoke-free housing policies benefit the health and the safety of residents by eliminating dangerous chemicals emitted by secondhand and thirdhand smoke. Other benefits include the reduced risk of building fires and the decreased costs of rehabilitating rental units.  

The Need for Smoke-Free Housing

There are several reasons why smoke-free housing is crucial:

  • In multi-unit housing, secondhand smoke can drift from unit to unit. This smoke can travel through air ducts and vents, as well as small openings in the walls, floors, and ceilings.
  • Thirdhand smoke can damage and stain various surfaces in smoke-filled units, and this smoke can give off dangerous chemicals to future tenants.
  • Chemicals in firsthand, secondhand, and thirdhand smoke are dangerous to all residents’ health and can cause serious health problems such as heart disease, various cancers, and asthma.
  • Lit cigarettes in a building are a safety hazard and are the leading cause of fire related deaths in the United States. Download The Dangers of Smoking in Apartment Units below. 

The Benefits of Living in a Smoke-Free Residence

  • Smoke-free housing is a healthier and safer environment to live in.
  • Non-smoking residents do not have to worry about secondhand smoke drifting into their homes.
  • Future residents will not be exposed to thirdhand smoke remaining from previous tenants.
  • Cigarette related fires will no longer be a cause for concern.
  • Building owners can save anywhere from $1,250-$2,955 per unit due to less repairs and cleaning costs with a smoke-free unit. 

The following table illustrates the cost to rehabilitate a unit where smoking is prohibited vs. a unit where smoking is allowed:    

  Non-Smoking Light Smoking Heavy Smoking
General Cleaning $240 $500 $720
Paint $170 $225 $480
Flooring $50 $950 $1,425
Appliances $60 $75 $490
Bathroom $40 $60 $400
Total $560 $1,810 $3,515
Data reflects surveys from housing authorities and subsidized housing facilities in New England; Collected and reported by Smoke-Free Housing New England, 2009.

Many individuals are opting for a smoke-free residence. Surveys show that individuals would be willing to pay more, or give up various amenities, in order to live in a smoke-free housing facility.   

View a video on The Benefits of Adopting a Smoke-Free Apartment Building Policy.

Smoke-Free Housing Policies are Legal

Smoking is not a protected right or activity. Additionally, there is no law that prohibits a landlord or building owner from making a shared-living facility smoke-free. Secondhand smoke can also be considered a nuisance by other non-smoking residents, and legal action can be taken to stop this occurrence. For additional legal information, please click here.

The Trend for Smoke-Free Housing

Smoke-free housing policies have become a growing trend nationwide! Housing facilities all over the country are developing smoke-free housing policies to help their residents live longer, healthier, and safer lives.  

The following multi-unit housing facilities in Will County have been identified as having a smoke-free housing policy*.  If you know of additional facilities with smoke-free housing policies to add to this growing list, please contact the Tobacco Control & Prevention program at 815-727-8769.


·         Heritage Woods of Bolingbrook (550 Kildeer Dr., Bolingbrook, IL 60440)
Crest Hill
·         The Inn at Willow Falls (1681 Willow Circle Dr., Crest Hill, IL 60403)
·         Zousa Drive Group Home (21046 Zausa Dr., Crest Hill, IL 60435)
·         Candice House (23810 Candice Ct., Crete, IL 60417)
Homer Glen
·         Marian Village (15624 Marian Dr., Homer Glen, IL 60491)
·         Emeritus at Joliet Campus (3320 Executive Dr., Joliet, IL 60431)
·         Gee-Jay Properties (Management Office at 301 Burr Elm, Joliet, IL 60433)
·         Joshua Arms Senior Residences (1315 Rowell Ave., Joliet, IL 60433)
·         Larkin Village Apartments (947 Lois Pl., Joliet, IL 60435)
·         Marycrest Village (2115 Marmion Ave., Joliet, IL 60436)
·         Salem Village (1315 Rowell Ave., Joliet, IL 60433)
·         Marley Oaks Assisted Living Residence (21631 W. 187th St., Mokena, IL 60448)
New Lenox
·         Encore Senior Village (1023 S. Cedar Rd., New Lenox, IL 60451)
·         The Cottages of New Lenox (1023 S. Cedar Rd., New Lenox, IL 60451)
·         Trinity Services (301 Veterans Parkway, New Lenox, IL 60451)
·         Harbor Chase of Plainfield (12446 S. Van Dyke Rd., Plainfield, IL 60585)
·         Heritage Woods of Plainfield (14731 S. Van Dyke Rd., Plainfield, IL 60544)
·         Senior Star at Weber Place (605 Edward Dr., Romeoville, IL 60446)
·         Shorewood Horizon Apartments (820 W. Black Rd., Shorewood, IL 60404)

*Updated: March 2016


Tobacco Control & Prevention Program

Please take our tenant survey! This survey is intended for Will County residents living in multi-unit housing facilities and should take less than 5 minutes to complete.  

If you are interested in learning more about smoke-free housing policies, please contact the Tobacco Control & Prevention program at (815) 727-8769. We can provide services such as smoke-free housing toolkits, free signage, surveys to tenants, notification letters, policy templates, Illinois Tobacco Quitline materials, educational presentations, and other resources to assist with developing and implementing a smoke-free housing policy. Please fill out an order form located in the “Documents to Download” section below.  

If you currently have a smoke-free building, call us at (815) 727-8769 and send us a copy of your smoke-free housing policy. We can help you advertise your smoke-free building!  

Additional Smoke-Free Housing Resources