Anonymous asked in Business & FinanceRenting & Real Estate · 5 months ago

Can a landlord legally deny special services to section 8 tenants?

I'm a disabled veteran living in a section 8 apartment under a V.A. program and the management. I've been here for 8 years and the management refuses to recarpet and repaint. Hud guidelines say a carpets life is 7 years and it wasnt new when I moved in. After begging for a few yrars they did do a carpet cleaning a few years ago and they've done it for other vets here. Hud guidelines also say that after a tenant has been a tenant for 5 years its the managements job to repaint. But they refuse to do it and I was told they only do that for market rate tenants.. Ive also been told thst the manager can pick and choose which tenants can get different things which I know is illegal.. But is them saying only market rate customers can get repainting and carpeting discrimination.. I'm looking for people answer that actually know the fair housing laws on this to answer.

10 Answers

  • 5 months ago

    I don't know a lot about section 8 specifics but in the private sector, a landlord paints and re-carpets BETWEEN tenants, never while they are living there because of the liability. In order to paint, all of your belongings will have to be pushed to the center of each room and covered completely. Any excess would have to be moved out, for the painters can move around to do the job. How is a landlord to be assured that each room will be properly prepared when the painters show up? He can't. If they can't do the job, the landlord would be stuck with the bill for the day. No landlord is going to accept that. And why should a landlord hire a lawyer to draft a waiver that you would have to sign? More costs than what any landlord would find acceptable - all so that you can have a nice, newly painted place. Hmmm. If you want it painted, do it yourself. Carpeting - everything has to be out in order for that to happen. Are you prepared to pay to have all of your stuff stored and brought back in. You said you were disabled. Are you even able to move furniture and EVERYTHING out? And then move it all back in? Where would you live in the meantime? Can you afford a hotel/motel room for a couple of days? On section 8 - I wonder. I can't see ANY landlord doing either while a tenant is living in the unit. There would be far too much liability and you have a rights where you live, that do not include booting you out to paint and re-carpet.

    Source(s): Certified Paralegal, with 25+ years' experience & with Landlord & Tenant law experience.
  • Judy
    Lv 7
    5 months ago

    With Section 8, they get the full rent amount, it's just that you don't pay it all, Section 8 pays some, so this makes no sense. That said, "guidelines" are not the same as requirements. Laws if any are by state.

    • SimplytheFACTS
      Lv 7
      5 months agoReport

      but often section 8 rates are reduced because there is a limit to what section 8 will pay... a full rate may be 1200. section 8 for the same may be 1000. if the persons income is 800/month, they pay 240 and taxpayers pay 560.

  • 5 months ago

    The life of a carpet begin 7 years has absolutely nothing to do with replacing it. It is the same thing with the paint. The life of the paint is 5 yr. The life of paint or carpet DOES NOT require the landlords to replace it at that time. The life of an item only means that they cannot charge you for any damage to if when you move out if they are older than at 5 yr or 7 yr.

    Landlords ARE NOT required to replace any flooring or paint unless the existing flooring or paint causes a health or safety issue. You have no legal grounds (from what you posted) what so ever to force them to replace your carpet or paint your unit.

    " Ive also been told thst the manager can pick and choose which tenants can get different things which I know is illegal." WRONG. Treating tenants differently is not in & of itself illegal. It is only illegal if the different treatment is based on ILLEGAL discrimination. All discrimination IS NOT illegal!!! "But is them saying only market rate customers can get repainting and carpeting discrimination." True but it is NOT illegal discrimination. There is nothing illegal about doing things for new tenants & not older ones. In fact that is pretty common practice. No it is not fair but it also IS NOT illegal. Fair & legal are not always the same thing

    You are misinterpreting the laws to suit your needs. You are incorrect on what you think is required.

  • 5 months ago

    Guidelines are suggestions, not law. You can contact the local housing authority that administers the HUD program and ask for an inspection. If the inspector finds the place unlivable, they will order the landlord to address the deficiencies. Unless the carpet is threadbare and unable to be cleaned, new carpet will NOT be ordered, and paint....not a chance. I haven't painted since we moved into our house over 30 years ago, and while it could use a new paint job, it's nothing that is a harm to anyone's health and safety. Most landlords are going to wait until someone is out to refurbish a unit with new paint, carpet and other things, and then they are going to bring the rent to market rates. If HUD won't cover the difference, for a new Section 8 applicant, between market and the voucher amount, then that unit will not be rented under Section 8. Therefore, you lose the argument over a landlord picking and choosing what units to do upgrades on.

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  • Anonymous
    5 months ago

    Someone does not have to put new carpeting in every 7 yrs. My tenants have carpeting that was put in in 1988. Their rent is at least $300.00 less than what I could get, so I'm not going to replace it. They could put in some inexpensive carpeting if they wanted, but most tenants wouldn't ever do that, and not think about how much less they pay per month. I put in inexpensive carpeting in a place I was renting because I was smart enough to know I was getting a good deal. As for painting, I'm not going to go in to paint with these tenants, again because their rent is so low, but also because they're very fussy & would then complain the painters did something. They asked for me to have the carpet shampooed & requested I have it chem dryed. I just ignored their request. It's amazing to me when tenants are paying way less in rent how they seem to want more for nothing.

  • 5 months ago

    You are misinterpreting things.

    Just because the lifespan is 7 years does NOT mean it needs to be replaced in 7 years. My living room carpet is from about 1988, The bedroom is over 20 years old, they are still okay.

    It has not been painted since 1988...not pretty, but okay...

    and think about it, section 8 is LOW RENT, where is the landlord supposed to get money from to replace carpets and paint frequently. In my area section 8 pays 200 less than market value for a minimally decent apartment....

    tenants are usually responsible for cleaning the carpet.....

    if you know the guideline is paint after 5 a link....that is ridiculous at taxpayers expense.....only if you are uncivilized would it need to be painted that often.

    no this does not fall under discrimination, being on assistance is not a protected least you aren't a deadbeat...problem is most people on section 8 are deadbeats who live like wild animals.....there just isn't enough money for deserving people...

    NOTE: IN SOME AREAS THERE ARE LOCAL LAWS ABOUT PAINTING, maybe rugs,but not most areas

    YES PAINTING AND CARPETING CAN BE DONE WHILE A TENANT IS IN PLACE, but is not done regularly ..unless really needed..usually when tenant has been there MANY years

  • LILL
    Lv 7
    5 months ago

    HUD guidelines are not law. Unless the carpet or paint pose a health/safety issue, the landlord is not required to replace the carpet or repaint.

  • 5 months ago

    You seem to know HUD guidelines rather well, I would talk to an attorney, but I would also start looking for a different apartment.. They can find a way to get you out.

  • 5 months ago

    Do the HUD guidelines require they replace the carpet after 7 years? Or is that guideline to help with figuring how much deposit can be kept for damaged carpet? No law requires they change out the carpet under any time frame.

    HUD guidelines do not require repainting every 5 years. The only laws that ever require them to repaint are in a few places where they are required to repaint BETWEEN tenants.

  • 5 months ago

    Landlords in these areas cannot legally refuse to rent to someone just because they use a Section 8 voucher to pay their rent. ... However, landlords do not have to lower their standard market rental rates to make the unit reasonably affordable to Section 8 voucher tenants.

    • .5 months agoReport

      Did you read the question at all? I dont know the answer myself to the guys question but its clear you didnt even bother to read the question.

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