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Pets in Properties That Serve the Elderly or Handicapped

Agents and Owners of properties designated for the elderly or handicapped persons are reminded that they may not discriminate against applicants or residents that own or keep a common household pet. A phone survey of several elderly properties within the Region X jurisdiction revealed instances where site management informed the caller that no pets were allowed on the premises. This is contrary to programmatic requirements as outlined in HUD Handbook 4350.1 REV-1, Chapter 32, based on the Code of Federal Regulations, 24 CFR Part 243.

Any project that serves elderly or handicapped persons, and is either subsidized or insured by HUD is required to allow pets. The notable exception is health care facilities such as nursing homes, intermediate care facilities, board and care homes and hospitals (projects insured under Section 232 or 242).

The potential downfalls for allowing pets on the premises must be offset with well-written House Pet Rules that are enforced consistently. Collection of a pet deposit is also key, but it may not exceed $300, the initial deposit charged to a tenant may not exceed $50, and $10 per month thereafter until the required deposit amount is met.

For further clarification, please contact a HUD project manager.

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