Smoking and the Communal Scheme

Smoking has always been a problem in communal schemes, especially sectional title buildings such as apartment blocks where smoke can enter other apartments.

This has recently come under the spotlight, since the Constitutional court declared that one may smoke cannabis within one’s own private property.

The Sectional Titles Schemes Management Act, its regulations, as well as the registered rules of the scheme, and or the Constitution, if an HOA, must be consulted, should an objection or dispute arise as a result of smoking residents.

Whilst most rules are silent on smoking, specifically, the Act and its regulations are silent on the topic as well, however, the Act (viz S13(1)(e), as well as the prescribed regulations (viz Management Rules 30 (a)(b)) do provide for no resident to cause nuisance or interference with any other resident (by resident the Act refers to owners and or members, however, by definition, this includes tenants and or visitors).

Therefore, should a complaint be received about the ingress of smoke or odours, same may be referred to a dispute resolution process, some rules specifically provide for same, such as the Community Schemes Ombud Service, for a ruling.