Can the body corporate stop someone from smoking a cigarette on their balcony when the smoke goes into a next door balcony? – Jackie, QLD

Cigarette smoke drifting from a neighbouring balcony is a common concern raised in body corporate community living. Whilst every owner has the right to enjoy their property in their own way, they should also be mindful of your right to peaceful enjoyment.

If your neighbours smoking on the balcony are doing so on private property or with exclusive-use by-laws, it can be challenging to restrict. However, if they’re doing so on common property, your body corporate can help you out – they can mediate matters between you and your neighbours and also put up clear signage and notices to demarcate clear smoking zones and no smoking areas on common property.

You may speak with your neighbours and discuss your concerns yourself – sometimes an open, friendly conversation can make a significant difference. You may also, want to review your property by-laws to know what is outlined regarding smoking on body corporate property and help your neighbours understand, who may be unaware of by-laws.

If your by-laws are inadequate unclear, you can approach your body corporate to have them amended in your next annual general meeting (AGM). Breaching by-laws can result in fines, so that can help restrict the issues of smoking to an extent.

Here is a guide on more tips for body corporate living that may interest you.  You can also find more useful tips in this free body corporate living guide here.