Pets vs. Assistive Animals – Tenant Disability Rights under FHA & HUD

Rights to Assistive Animals for Disabled Tenants

I recently gave a seminar to Realtors and Investors on the difference between pets and assistive (service) animals. I wished to sensitize them to the real world financial risks of ignoring a disabled tenant’s (prospective or current) request for assistive animals.

As of April 2013 both the Fair Housing Act (FHA) & the Federal Housing Administration (HUD)  expanded the definition of service animals to apply its protective rules to ALL assistive/service animals – even emotional support and comfort animals.

Therefore, according to the Tenant Disability Rights under both FHA & HUD, persons with disabilities may now request a reasonable accommodation for any assistance animals, including an emotional support and comfort animal.

AND HERE IS WHAT YOU NEED TO REMEMBER:Assistive animals can range from a miniature horse to an iguana or monkey and the list of the various types of assistance animals keeps on growing;

  • While all pets may be animals NOT all animals are pets;
  • Assistive animals aren’t animals of choice, like a pet, but rather a necessity;
  • These animals are NOT legally required to have ANY special training, tags or certifications.

BOTTOM LINE:

Any animal that assists a disabled person is a service animal. It doesn’t make a difference what service it provides.

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When it comes to managing your single, multi family & commercial properties, rest easy – Octazon Management has got you covered, we can protect your assets and take away your property management headaches and distractions through our full-service or back office property management services. Octazon uses advanced technology that allows us to stay connected and maintain transparency with our clients.

When providing management services to Realtors, Octazon will NOT provide the leasing, rentals or sales– so you never have to worry about losing control of your relationship with the owner. 

With Octazon, we bring order to residential property ownership.

Call us 888-324-9528 or email us at info@octazon.com today.

Check us out @ www.octazon.com  

THE WELL DRAFTED COMMERCIAL LEASE – Landlord Rights & Remedies

Landlord take note – there is significant benefit to creating a well drafted commercial lease.

While the Florida’s commercial Landlord and Tenant statute, Chapter 83 Part I, provides a general framework for enforcing the landlord’s remedies, many of the statutory rights and duties may be modified or waived between the parties in a well crafted lease. Additionally, in the commercial arena, case law also plays a large role in interpreting the commercial landlord and tenant relationship.

For example, the strict and specific laws about security deposits found in the Florida’s residential Landlord Tenant Statute, Part II does not apply to the commercial arena. Rather, security deposits are governed by whatever the parties agree to be bound to, as set forth in the lease between the parties, while the liquidated damage provisions are governed by case law.

 In residential leases it is common for the Realtor and investor to gravitate towards a form lease promulgated by the Board of Realtors and Florida Supreme Court – “The FAR\BAR Lease” – which is very Tenant friendly leaving the landlord without important protections. (See more in our article on the subject – Landlord Friendly Leases )

However, when it comes to a commercial lease, landlords should instruct their Realtors to take advantage of the benefit that case law and waiver plays in the commercial arena and therefore, instruct their agents to engage a strong commercial attorney to draft a commercial lease and insist that a standard or generic commercial form not be used. A strong, detailed, sophisticated commercial lease needs to be tailored for the specific transaction and property to provide the necessary rights and remedies of the Landlord, and to be most protective of the Landlord and their investment.

It is important that the customized terms of the commercial lease be drafted clearly since any ambiguity in the lease is construed against the drafter. So make sure to engage an attorney familiar with commercial transactions.

When it comes to managing your multi family & commercial properties, rest easy – Octazon Management has got you covered, can protect your assets and take away your property management headaches and distractions through our full-service or back office property management services. Octazon uses advanced technology that allows us to stay connected and maintain transparency with our clients.

When providing management services to Realtors, Octazon will NOT provide the leasing, rentals or sales – so you never have to worry about losing control of your relationship with the owner. 

With Octazon, we bring order to residential property ownership.

Call us 888-324-9528 or email us at info@octazon.com today.