About Housing Accessibility

It is a common misconception that private residential housing is covered by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Where the ADA does apply in relation to housing is government-owned or -operated housing and certain privately owned facilities. For example, the ADA applies in areas such as public housing, student and faculty housing, and nursing homes. The ADA also applies to temporary housing provided in emergencies and to social service facilities, such as homeless shelters. 

In the private sector, the ADḀ's coverage of housing is limited to places of public accommodation, such as social service establishments and housing provided on or behalf of a place of education, such as a dormitory. The ADA does not apply to individually owned or leased housing in the private sector not used as a public accommodation, including single family homes, condominiums, and apartments.

Places of public accommodation located in residential buildings, such as rental and sales offices, commercial spaces, and hotel accommodations, are covered by the ADA Standards.

Another federal law, known as the Fair Housing Act (FHA), typically applies to multi-family housing such as apartments and condominiums. 

See also Federal Housing Act (FHA).

 


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