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Southfield Landlords: What is ‘Reasonable Accommodation’ for Disabled Tenants?

A Beautiful Single Level Home with Reasonable Accommodations for a Disabled Resident in SouthfieldAs a Southfield landlord with a single-family residence, you must obey the Federal Fair Housing Act’s prerequisite to admit ‘reasonable accommodations’ not only to disabled tenants but also to tenants who inhabit with or are connected with disabled individuals. However, what is ‘reasonable accommodation’ and what would ‘unreasonable’ be?

At the outset, ‘reasonable accommodation’ may be for the physical parts of the rental home and might include basic transformations, such as lowering towel bars and light switches, or a smoke alarm that has flashing lights in addition to an audible alarm. Furthermore, the tenant would repay you for both the installation and removal of these accommodations.

Besides accommodations to the physical aspects of the residence, you may be asked to furnish ‘reasonable accommodation’ on the administrative side. For example, you might have a tenant with a mental disability that affects their memory. This tenant might ask that you call each month to cue them to pay the rent. This would be judged reasonable.

Now let’s view an example of what might be deemed ‘unreasonable’. One of the key considerations in this respect is whether the accommodation would impose hardship on you as a housing provider. For example, suppose you own a two-story single-family rental house and receive a request that you install an elevator for a person with a physical disability. This could be repudiated as it would require serious construction and charge a great deal.

An unreasonable accommodation petition could arise on the administrative side as well. Suppose you own a single-family residence and receive a request from a probable tenant 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 could be taken into account as unreasonable and you as a landlord could refuse this request.

Real Property Management Metro Detroit is knowledgeable in the Fair Housing Act requirements and how they are relevant to you as a Southfield landlord with a single-family residence. We can help you manage these requirements to guarantee that you are in acquiescence when renting to individuals with disabilities. Would you like to understand more? Please contact us online or call us at 248-808-6550 for more information.

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