Smokers made our rental house stink

2 Replies

I checked in on my rental property recently after my Tennant of three years moved out. The place looked great an he was a great Tennant, he even say as VP of the HOA... But there was one issue. He had been smoking in the house for three years and it reeked. Any tips on how to get the smell of smoke out, does painting cover it up. I have new tennants as with a young asthmatic child movin in 4 days from today

Our remedy is to clean all hard surfaces with white vinegar. Then clean the walls and ceiling with TSP and repaint with an odor/stain blocker, such as Zinsser or Kilz. You will need to clean inside all cabinets and appliances too and anywhere where smoke could seep in. Get the duct work and HVAC professionally cleaned. Replace carpeting and pads, clean and seal the subfloor too with the odor/stain blocker.

Good luck. Tobacco smoke can cause a lot of damage. That's why we have a strict no-smoking policy. Something you may want to consider for the future. Here is ours:

SMOKING. We have a No Smoking Policy. Tenant acknowledges the premises are designated as smoke-free and agrees not to smoke and will not allow any of their family or guests to smoke on the premises, either inside the unit or outside on adjoining grounds.  Tenant agrees to abide by this no-smoking policy.  This includes smoking tobacco, marijuana, any other substance and/or vaping chemicals. If Tenant smokes/vapes or allows others to smoke/vape on the premises, Tenant agrees to pay a penalty fee of fifty dollars ($50) per violation.

Thank you Marcia for the advice. I was amazed at house well vinegar worked to rid of the smells. I also tried bleaching the walls after I ripped up the carpet and before I installed the new flooring. The killz made a big difference, and so did repainting. I had vaulted ceilings and much of the smoke had gathered their and stained it a yellowish tint. Fresh paint on the ceiling was when we noticed the smoky smell finally erased. 

The most gratifying moment for us, was seeing the new tenants satisfaction with our work.

We didn't let the experience dissuade us from sticking with buying rental properties and put an offer on another nearby home. Looking forward to slowly growing out inventory in the Daphne and Fairhope Alabama region over the next few years. Airbus is moving into the Mobile, AL and bringing lots of jobs and demand for quality rental properties. My wife and I are working in this market and enjoy working with our friends in the south. We even stayed with our plumber while we were working on the property with the smoke. Great people in the South.

Join the Largest Real Estate Investing Community

Basic membership is free, forever.

By signing up, you indicate that you agree to the BiggerPockets Terms & Conditions.