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Why an HOA Board Needs to Consider Aging Owners
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An important and ever growing consideration for a homeowner association is aging and elderly owners, as this can have a great impact on the HOA both legally and practically.

There must be guidelines in the HOA's governing documents to address issues like disability, dementia and required services. Here's a look at some issues your HOA may face as the building population ages.

Most people prefer to age in their own home comfortably as retirement communities are becoming a thing of the past. The first challenge to the HOA is legal issues, including the need to make accommodations for owners with disabilities.

The HOA has a responsibility to make these accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act and failure to do so will result in costly litigation as well as penalties.

There are also practical issues to address, such as how to deal with Alzheimer's or dementia. Because of the privacy laws governing HOAs, it's important to consult with a law firm specializing in homeowners association law to protect homeowners as well as the association.

As you review your HOA's governing documents, consider a range of possible scenarios. What happens if an owner on a top floor of a building without an elevator has trouble getting up and down the stairs?

How can an older building be retrofitted to accommodate disabilities? Can EMTs and emergency responders easily reach residents in distress? How can the HOA respond if an owner begins to show signs of dementia or Alzheimer's and no longer has the ability to live on their own?

In this particular instance, it's a good idea for boards to keep a full list of contact information for each owner as the move in. If an owner begins to deteriorate and need assisted living, this provides a good starting point for a solution.

If you would like to find the best real estate attorney when it comes to Florida Condominium Law then I highly recommend speaking with Ben Solomon and Michael Furshman of ALG.


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