Accessible Housing

Reasonable Modifications and Accommodations Section 6(a) of the Fair Housing Act of 1988 makes it illegal for landlords to refuse to let tenants make "reasonable modifications" to their house or apartment if the the tenant is willing to pay for the changes. The law also requires new construction of dwellings with four or more units to include features such as wheelchair accessibility, reinforced walls to accommodate later installation of grab bars in bathrooms and accessible electrical outlets and thermostats. A home modification can convert or adapt a housing environment to make performing tasks easier, reduce accidents and support indepdendent living. Examples include ramps and stair glides, hand- held showers, grab bars, roll-in showers, better lighting, and widened hallways and doorways. (As people age, major danger areas are stairs and bathtubs What does “Reasonable Modification” mean?  A “Reasonable Modification” is a structural modification that is made to allow a person with disabilities the full enjoyment of housing and related facilities, made at the tenant's expense. A landlord can require property to be returned to original condition when the tenant vacates the property. What does “Reasonable Accommodation” mean?  A "Reasonable Accommodation" is a change in rules, policies, practices, or services so that a person with a disability will have an equal opportunity to use and enjoy a dwelling unit or common area. Being "reasonable" means that the accommodation is both practical and feasible, or meaning that a housing provider (landlord or property management company, or condominium or homeowner assocation) must grant a request for an accommodation, only if the accommodation does NOT: Impose an "undue burden," or an unreasonable financial or administrative cost Represent a "fundamental alteration" that changes the basic type of service provided by the landlord (or condo or homeowner association) Housing providers should do everything possible to assist with an accommodation, unless doing so poses an undue financial or administrative burden.

Fair Housing is not an option. It’s the law.

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