- April 7, 2022
- Posted by: CCM
- Category: Uncategorized
HOAs, like all businesses, must adhere to laws to ensure that their properties are accessible to people with disabilities. The two key laws that determine disability regulations for HOAs are the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Federal Fair Housing Act (FHA).
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
The ADA prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities. The law is broad and covers many possible locations where someone could experience discrimination, including, most notably for HOAs, the use of public spaces. For an HOA, this means that any areas of the property that are open to the general public must comply with ADA regulations. Areas that are restricted to members and guests only are not bound by this law.
One example of this is the HOA rental or sales office. Members of the general public are allowed (and encouraged!) to visit the sales office to learn about purchasing a home or condo in the association. Therefore, the office doors need to be wide enough to accommodate a wheelchair, there must be designated handicapped parking spots, and the restrooms must be handicapped accessible as well.
If the HOA rents out parts of its property for general public use, those areas need to meet ADA requirements as well. For example, if the HOA rents out its pool to a local swim team, the pool must include a pool lift; if the HOA has a ballroom that is available for general public rental, that facility and its associated parking must meet ADA regulations.
The Federal Fair Housing Act (FHA)
While the ADA regulations apply to members of the general public, but not HOA members specifically, the FHA works to protect HOA members who live with a disability. The act “prohibits discrimination by direct providers of housing, such as landlords and real estate companies as well as other entities, … whose discriminatory practices make housing unavailable to persons…” who have a disability.
Under the FHA, multi-family units containing four or more dwellings that were built after 1991 must contain an accessible entrance, accessible common areas, wider doors, accessible light switches, outlets, and thermostats; as well as other modifications to allow someone in a wheelchair to comfortably maneuver around the dwelling and common areas.
In addition, the HOA management must allow owners to make reasonable modifications to their homes to make them more accessible, if desired. For example, the owner of a single-family home would need to be allowed to install a wheelchair ramp instead of steps to their front door.
Complying with ADA and FHA regulations is the law. CCM is an expert in ensuring that the properties that we manage are compliant with disability regulations. Contact us today to learn how we can audit your facility for disability compliance as part of our property management process.
Consolidated Community Management (CCM) is a full-service property management company specializing in condominium and homeowner association management in Broward and southern Palm Beach Counties. We are committed to working together with community Boards of Directors to develop management plans tailored to the unique requirements of each community and their residents.
CCM provides a quality of service that is unique to our industry and consistently delivers a distinct competitive advantage. Our concentrated, extensive local presence and knowledge of community associations results in lasting partnerships and superior service. We have built our industry reputation on employing the best in the business and assigning only a limited number of properties to each Property Manager Team.
Our team at Consolidated Community Management provides expert property management services at competitive prices. Contact us today by calling (954) 718-9903 or clicking on ccmfla.com.
 US Department of Labor. Americans with Disabilities Act | U.S. Department of Labor (dol.gov). Accessed March 2, 2021.