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What are ‘reasonable accommodations’ in condominiums?

On Behalf of | Sep 29, 2023 | Real Estate Law

Those who have managed a condo know that it’s common for residents to request certain conveniences and accommodations. As with any living situation, they may have unique needs that require special attention. This is especially true for residents with disabilities needing “reasonable accommodations.”

These accommodations enable them to enjoy their homes and shared spaces just like anyone else.

Fair requests and accommodations

Like other states, Connecticut condos must ensure fairness to people with disabilities. Doing so adheres to the Fair Housing Act (FHA) along with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Under these laws, a “reasonable accommodation” means changing a rule, practice or service to accommodate a person’s disability. Some accommodations may include allowing the following:

  • Service animals and emotional support animals
  • Reserved parking
  • Accessibility changes
  • Policy adjustments

Everyone, including those with disabilities, should have the same chances to enjoy and use public and shared spaces. They should also be able to do their duties as unit owners without limitations. For instance, if a condo only accepts checks, they might agree to online payments for someone with mobility issues. Another example could be letting a service or emotional support animal live in the condo, even with a ‘no pets’ rule.

Unjust workload

Most condos might consider a request as ‘reasonable’ if it is not too much of a burden financially or operationally. However, they can only refuse a request if it puts an undue burden on them, including:

  • Impose an unnecessary financial strain
  • Demand too much administrative work
  • Alter established core policies
  • Intrude on the rights of other residents

Condominiums must consider the resident’s request for accommodation while also considering other factors. Balancing these things can sometimes be challenging, but it is crucial for all residents. It ensures a harmonious, inclusive and legally compliant community.