Conditional Offer of Tenancy

June, 2020

Traditional property management practices screen rental applicants to evaluate potential financial risk to business operations. Of primary importance is an applicant’s potential risk of rent default, evaluated on a history of the applicant’s management of financial obligations and a current, stable source of income. If there is potential business risk of rent default, but the […]

Is source of income a protected class?

June, 2020

As of this writing, source of income is not a protected class under the federal Fair Housing Act. However, in some states, cities, and counties, source of income is a protected class. In these jurisdictions housing providers cannot reject an applicant based on where his income comes from as long as the income is from a […]

A tenant moved in a dog who he now claims is an ESA. What steps should I take to determine if this is legitimate?

June, 2020

Depending upon the circumstances it may be advisable to seek legal advice on how to proceed. You may wish to also research HUD guidance FHEO-2020-01, the “Assistance Animal Notice” that clarifies how housing providers can comply with the Fair Housing Act (FHA) when assessing a person’s request to have an animal in housing to provide […]

I need to hire a property management company for my rentals. What are some important questions to ask when interviewing companies?

June, 2020

Utilizing a property management company can be advantageous for an owner particularly in managing the everyday details in property operations. Keep in mind however that the use of a property management company does not eliminate owner liabilities related to business ownership and operation. The property management company will be the owner’s legal agent who essentially […]

Lease Amendment and Lease Addendum

June, 2020

Lease agreements protect the interests of landlord and tenant by defining duties and responsibilities required during the term of tenancy. Changes, additions, and deletions can be made to the lease agreement as warranted by business necessity and legal compliances. The type of document required to effect the change, addition, or deletion may depend upon its […]

How should housing providers handle Reasonable Accommodation Requests due to COVID-19?

June, 2020

The Fair Housing Act provides an affirmative right to persons with disabilities to reasonable accommodations. A reasonable accommodation is a change in a rule, policy, practice, or service that may be necessary to allow a person with a disability the equal opportunity to use and enjoy a dwelling. Failure to provide a reasonable accommodation may […]

Is a person who has COVID-19 covered under Fair Housing disability discrimination protections?

June, 2020

There are differing opinions of whether COVID-19 is or should be considered a fair housing disability. It may be that determination of disability due to COVID-19 under Fair Housing Act standards will ultimately be decided by the courts. However, it is important for a housing provider to follow fair housing disability protections in all aspects […]

How do fair housing protections apply to COVID-19?

June, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has raised fair housing concerns, particularly on the basis of race, national origin, disability, and age. There have been reports that housing providers have refused to negotiate with persons that the provider perceived, on the basis of race or national origin, to be associated with an area where a COVID-19 outbreak is […]

EEOC Guidance for Employers during the COVID-19 Pandemic

June, 2020

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recently updated its previously published pandemic guidance, “Pandemic Preparedness in the Workplace and the Americans With Disabilities Act”, to incorporate new information for employers regarding the COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally the EEOC has released updates to its publication, “What You Should Know About COVID-19 and the ADA, the Rehabilitation […]

Is it safe to conduct a physical showing of a vacant unit?

May, 2020

Prospective tenants have been accustomed to physical tours of a vacant unit to aid in their decision to submit an application. Be sure you understand and comply with state and local directives for business practices before you schedule an appointment for the prospect to tour the unit. The following suggestions may be helpful in developing […]