Selecting the suitable resident for your rental home can be a challenge. Potential renters come in all sorts, and plenty has personal demanding situations of their own. Every so often, these personal challenges of a resident overlap along with your obligations as a landlord, and this is when the Fair Housing Act (FHA) regularly comes into the case. It is fairly critical to recognize what those obligations are so that you can respond appropriately to conditions that are covered by the Act.
The Fair Housing Act’s reasonable accommodation requirements are designed to protect both you and your residents against disability discrimination. The philosophy at the back of this policy holds that on account that certain guidelines or regulations would possibly impact folks with disabilities differently than the ones without, treating all residents exactly the same may also simply deny disabled individuals important use-aspects of a rental home. It is for this reason that the FHA permits residents to request “reasonable accommodations” at any point within the leasing process or occupation of the property.
So, what exactly is a “reasonable” accommodation?
According to the FHA, a “reasonable” accommodation is any modification in “rules, policies, practices, or services” necessary for an individual with a disability to have equal opportunity to perform routine major life activities (for example walking, eating, sleeping) at home. This might mean that a resident which has a hearing impairment wants smoke detectors with flashing lights to be installed in the rental home. Other examples of reasonable accommodations may include:
- Large print rental documents for the visually impaired
- Helping someone with mental impairments fill out paperwork
- Assigning a lower mailbox for a person in a wheelchair
- Permitting an assistance animal (including emotional support animals) in an otherwise “no pets allowed” residence
- Installing safety bars in showers or bathtubs
What makes these “reasonable” modifications is that they’re both directly associated with the individual’s disability and are within the capacity of the property owner to permit. normally, residents are chargeable for set up and elimination of any physical modifications.
This doesn’t suggest that property owners need to accommodate each request. as an example, if a resident with a phobia of dogs, will request that a neighbor’s dog is removed from the property then that is clearly unreasonable and may be appropriately denied. Any changes requested by the resident have to be both essential and within the assets owner’s economic and administrative capacity to complete. If a preliminary request is found to be unreasonable, the owner ought to work with the resident to provide an alternative solution which could nonetheless deal with the disabled person’s needs. The concept of “reasonable accommodation” is extensive and pretty flexible, because of this there’ll regularly be a couple of powerful solution.
The last thing that a property owner needs is to worry about FHA compliance. At Real Property Management LoneStar, we have the expertise to guarantee you and your property will be up to the challenge of responding appropriately to accommodation requests. Want to learn more? Please contact us online or call us directly at 512-520-9060.
We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.