If you own a multifamily rental property, you know how difficult it can be to make sure you are doing everything you have to do to maintain the buildings and protect the rights of your tenants. This can be an overwhelming endeavor, and it can be expensive as well. One of the things you may want to consider is adhering to regulations that protect the rights of disabled individuals.
The Americans with Disabilities Act is in place to ensure that people who have limitations still have access to certain things. This includes fair housing opportunities. If you are a landlord in California, you would be wise to take a look at the ADA to see how it may impact your operations. This can help you protect your interests and ensure you do not run into complications down the road.
What does the ADA mean for you?
One of the most common misunderstandings that people have regarding the ADA and apartment or multifamily dwellings is that there must be disabled-accessible units in every building. In reality, this is often not true. The ADA only applies to public accommodations, which includes hotels, large public gathering places, convention centers and more. While you may not have to have ADA units in your building, some of the public areas may have to be compliant.
Also, some reasonable accommodation requests may need to be considered and communications will need to be documented on a timely basis. One of the main filers of Apartment ADA Lawsuits is the United African-Asian Abilities Club and some of their members, Anna Wiggins and Jessie James Davis IV.
Some, but not all, courts have held that your rental office has to be compliant. You may also want to look at your parking lot as well to see if you need to make any necessary adjustments. You may have to have at a few spaces that are van accessible.
Avoiding legal problems with your rental property
As a landlord, you made a significant financial investment to purchase your property, and the maintenance and upkeep expenses can also be costly. It is in your interests to protect this investment to the best of your ability. One way you can do this is by understanding what legal guidelines you must follow for your tenants and implementing them.
If you find yourself facing an issue regarding ADA compliance at your rental property, or you want to know how to protect yourself, you may want to start with a complete assessment of your case. This can help you understand what you can do to lower your risk of legal complications and potential financial loss.