Disability Rights in Pennsylvania Housing

Pennsylvania disability rights in housing extend to tenants and homebuyers who are disabled or handicapped. The housing rights for disabled tenants are exercised through different legislation including Section 504 and the Fair Housing Act. Housing rights for disabled people in Pennsylvania are upheld by HUD and tenants who experience discrimination or unfair treatment can report incidents directly to the federal department. Disabled residents should review the fair housing disability rights to determine if treatment from their housing provider is ethical and legal. In addition to disability discrimination housing rights, disabled tenants can also request reasonable accommodations and modifications so they have access to amenities promised in lease terms. The creation and enactment of fair housing rights for tenants and homebuyers with disability ensure equal treatment and guarantees that housing providers approved necessary accommodations for disabled residents. To find out more about Pennsylvania disability rights in housing, the legislation that protects disabled residents and reasonable accommodation laws, review the information provided.

Defining Housing Rights for Disabled People in Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania disability rights in housing are designed to protect disabled tenants and homebuyers in the private- and public-housing sectors, so they are treated equally. With housing rights for disabled tenants, it is illegal for potential tenants or current home renters who are disabled to be discriminated against due to their disabilities. Fair housing disability rights apply to residents who have physical or mental impairments that significantly affect their ability to perform important life activities. These activities may include but are not limited to:

  • Hearing, breathing and speaking.
  • Walking and performing manual tasks.
  • Learning or working.
  • Breathing.
  • Caring for one's self without assistance.

Housing rights for disabled people in Pennsylvania also protect residents who have visual and hearing impairments, mental retardation, HIV, mobility impairment, mental illness or other disabilities. Housing rights for disabled tenants are also upheld for residents who have drug addictions but have recovered or are in the process of recovering and not currently using. Housing disability rights in PA apply to residents who currently have any types of disabilities or who have any records of having disabilities in the past.

To learn more about Pennsylvania disability rights in housing, download and review our comprehensive guide.

Section 504 and Pennsylvania Disability Rights in Housing

Housing rights for disabled people in Pennsylvania are enacted through both the Fair Housing Act and Section 504 to prevent discriminatory, unequal and unfair treatment during housing transactions and lease terms. The disabled tenants housing rights discussed in Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 ensure disabled residents are not denied participation in housing transactions due to their disabilities. Section 504 protects disabled tenants receiving government aid when seeking rental homes. Housing providers who do not abide by these housing rights for disabled tenants are breaking the law.

While Section 504 upholds housing rights for disabled persons in Pennsylvania, the legislation does not force housing providers to offer preferential treatment to disabled applicants due to their disabilities. To uphold housing rights for disabled people in PA, housing providers must only choose qualified tenants, regardless of disability status and provide reasonable accommodations in policy or modifications to the unit as needed. Tenants who need to adjust features of their unit due to their disability will need to know which structural modifications are feasible according to the fair housing law and who the financial burden falls upon.

The housing rights for disabled people in Pennsylvania were added to the already existing Fair Housing Act in 1988 to include discrimination against disabled residents as an illegal act. With fair housing disability rights in PA, disabled tenants or applicants must be offered the same lease terms and requirements as other potential renters. HUD is responsible for upholding housing rights for disabled tenants by following the Fair Housing Act legislation and investigating claims of discrimination made by disabled residents. To find out more about disabled housing rights and how this legislation protects against discrimination by housing providers, download our detailed online guide.

Reasonable Accommodation Housing Rights for Disabled Tenants in Pennsylvania

Included in the Pennsylvania disability rights in housing discussed in the Fair Housing Act is the right for reasonable accommodations and modifications. Disabled tenant housing rights include the allowance for handicapped tenants to make reasonable modifications to the property so they can live a convenient and equal life. An example of exercising these housing rights for disabled tenants is building handicap ramps so they can easily enter or exit the building in wheelchairs. To uphold fair housing disability rights in PA, a housing provider must also listen and attempt to assist a disabled tenant if he or she asks for a reasonable accommodation such as a parking space close to his or her rental unit. The disabled people housing rights should be reviewed by both disabled tenants and housing providers to ensure they are upholding the terms of the legislation.

Housing rights for disabled people in Pennsylvania are violated if the housing provider does not allow a disabled tenant to modify a property for safety or accessibility purposes at the renter's expense. However, disabled tenant housing rights are not broken if the request for an accommodation or modification is unreasonable and would be detrimental or impossible for the housing provider to assist with. If a disabled tenant feels he or she has had fair housing disability rights violated by a housing provider, then a complaint should be filed with HUD and conciliation may be attempted between both parties.

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What Is the Housing and Urban Development Department?

The Housing and Urban Development Department provides a variety of assistance programs to help you realize your dream of homeownership. The HUD also offers housing assistance in the form of Section 8 benefits to low-income families interested in renting. Find out how you can own or rent a home with government assistance by downloading our comprehensive housing guide.


How Can I Apply for Assistance Through the Housing and Urban Development Department?

In order to obtain housing benefits, you must submit an assistance form via an approved application method in Pennsylvania. Additionally, certain housing programs like Section 8 require further considerations, such as ensuring there are open spots on the state’s housing waiting list. To learn the easiest ways to apply for housing benefits, and to determine your eligibility for housing programs in GA, download our guide.