As a Shrewsbury landlord for a single-family residence, you have to follow the Federal Fair Housing Act’s requirement to allow ‘reasonable accommodations’ to both residents with disabilities and residents living with or who are associated with disabled persons. Then again, what is ‘reasonable accommodation’ and what would ‘unreasonable’ be?
To start with, ‘reasonable accommodation’ may be for the physical components of the rental home and might include simple modifications, such as lowering light switches and towel bars or adding a smoke alarm equipped with flashing lights together with an audible alarm. Moreover, the resident would pay for both the setting up and removing of these accommodations.
In addition to accommodations to the physical components of the home, the resident might ask to be provided ‘reasonable accommodation’ on the administrative side. For example, you might have a resident with a memory-related mental disability. This resident might ask that you call monthly to remind them to pay the rent. This would be regarded as reasonable.
Now, let’s explore an instance that could be thought of as ‘unreasonable.’ One of the key concerns in this respect is whether the accommodation would make it hard for you as a housing provider. For example, what if you have a two-story single-family rental house and receive a request for you to install an elevator for someone with a physical disability? This could be refused as it would be pricey and require major construction.
An unreasonable accommodation request could appear on the administrative aspect too. Suppose you own a single-family home and get a request from a possible resident with a mental impairment to call them each morning and evening to remind them to turn the exterior lights on at night and off in the morning. This can be declared unreasonable and you as a landlord have grounds to deny this request.
Real Property Management MetroWest-Worcester is well versed in the Fair Housing Act requirements and how they affect you as a Shrewsbury landlord with a single-family property. We can help you manage these requirements to ensure that you are in compliance when renting to persons with disabilities. Would you like to find out more? Please contact us online or call us at 508-329-6000 for more information.
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.