Know the Ins and Outs of Live-In Aides

March 28, 2010    

From time to time, you may be asked by a resident to approve the addition of a “live-in aide” to his household. Reasons for the aide vary. The resident may have a disability and need help with day-to-day living. An elderly resident may need an aide for assistance and companionship to...

Set Smoke Detector Policy to Protect Residents, Avoid Liability

February 22, 2010    

You are required by HUD to have at least one smoke detector in every unit at your site. It's more than good common sense to take this safety step; smoke detectors can save lives.

Having the required smoke detectors in place also could save you down the road in a legal battle—but...

How to Conduct an Effective Eviction Meeting

February 1, 2010    

If you ever have to evict a resident, you need to keep in mind that the resident has certain rights. Among them is the right to meet with you to discuss your rationale for the eviction. Essentially, during this meeting, the resident has the right to present his or her case to convince you not to...

Translating HUD's LEP Requirements into Practice

December 28, 2009    

In 2007, HUD issued final guidance on helping those with limited English proficiency (LEP) gain access to federally funded services and programs. The guidance called for HUD-assisted housing entities to implement a plan that includes translating “vital” written materials and...

Abandoned or Absent: How to Handle Unit That May Have Been Vacated

September 22, 2009    

How do you know if a resident has abandoned his unit? What are the signs that it may just be an extended absence instead of abandonment?

Be Vigilant in Protecting Resident Information

September 22, 2009    

HUD has established “Privacy Principles” in which the agency outlines its obligation to protect privacy and safeguard the information that individual citizens entrust to it (see HUD's Privacy Principles on p. 7). This obligation is, HUD says, a fundamental part of its mission to...

Observing the Rights of Applicants and Residents with Mental Health Disabilities

September 20, 2009    

Owners and managers of assisted housing often struggle to comply with fair housing requirements. Laws protecting people with disabilities can be especially tough to interpret. To help clarify the requirements, particularly with respect to people with mental health disabilities, the Insider...

Avoid Appearance of Retaliation Against Residents

August 23, 2009    

When is an eviction retaliatory? That is an important question for managers of rental housing because many state and local rental housing laws bar “retaliatory eviction.” In addition, the Fair Housing Act makes certain retaliatory actions against residents illegal if they hinder the...

How to Write a Tenant Selection Plan

July 26, 2009    

One of the toughest jobs of a site owner or manager is writing a good tenant selection plan. The tenant selection plan is a crucial document, says Dan Bancroft, an attorney who has written tenant selection plans for project-based sites. It gives you a way to explain and justify your decisions if...

Comply with New EPA Rules When Renovating Older Housing

June 23, 2009    

In April 2008, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued important new rules on renovation, repair, and painting of housing that was built before 1978. According to the EPA, the new requirements are part of a comprehensive federal effort to eliminate childhood lead poisoning.


Lead Hazard Disclosure: Tell What You Know

May 24, 2009    

Federal law requires housing providers to disclose to potential renters and buyers the presence of lead-based paint hazards on the premises. Almost all housing built before 1978, whether subsidized by HUD or not, is covered by the disclosure law. The penalties for noncompliance can be...

Comply with Military Service Law Covering Residents on Active Duty

February 26, 2009    

With tens of thousands of military personnel overseas in 2003 and 2004, Congress rewrote a World War II-era law that provides certain financial protections to members of the military and their families. Today, the conflicts abroad are continuing to require the service of thousands of men and...