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Fair Housing

Our Fair Housing and 504 compliance courses are continually updated to reflect the most current requirements. We offer courses suitable for agents and owners as well as courses for both new and experienced on-site staff. Select a course to find out the available formats and to read the course description. For a complete list of courses, download our Signature Course Catalog.

Fair Housing Timely Topics

Format: 90-minute webinar or 1¼ - 1½ hour conference session

Focus: Join us for an update on Fair Housing and COVID-19, HUD’s “sexual harassment in housing” initiative, limited English proficiency and national origin discrimination, documentation challenges with VAWA, Fair Housing violations in signage and on-line advertising, Rural Development’s enforcement initiative for 504 Compliance, the Census Bureau’s new tools for AFHMP’s and Language Assistance Plans, and new guidance on processing requests for service and emotional support animals. Find out the effect of HUD’s recent repeal of the 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) rule, proposed revisions to the Disparate Impact Rule, and the draft 27061 Race and Ethnicity form. Ask your burning questions on Fair Housing and get the answers you need in order to stay in compliance. [Topics subject to change.]

Fair Housing: The Letter and the Spirit

Format: 90-minute conference session (perfect for a "general session")

Focus: An interactive look back at the origins and evolution of Fair Housing laws in the United States: Where we are, how we got here, and where we might be headed. This is not a "nuts and bolts" course - it is a course designed to re-energize jaded housing providers to approach the rules in the spirit of the law. This course is interactive and engaging including a "Price is Right" style intro with prizes, a matching game of dates and events, and an inspirational Power Point.

Complying with VAWA: 2020 Update

Format: 90-minute webinar or 1¼ - 1½ hour conference session

Focus: VAWA expired in December and renewal legislation is pending. New protections are included in HR 6545 – the proposed reauthorization bill. Find out what VAWA expiration and reauthorization will mean for your property. We will review the current requirements and discuss the challenging issues facing managers. Find out about the status of the proposed form revisions and HUD’s candid answers to real-world dilemmas you encounter. Current RD guidance will be discussed along with an update on what the state agencies are doing to implement VAWA on their tax credit sites. We will review the latest additions to your state(s) laws regarding domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking and close with an updated list of “Actions Needed” for each type of property covered by the law.

Fair Housing Case Studies: Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me!

Format: 90-minute webinar or 1¼ - 1½ hour conference session

Focus: You’ve been trained ad nauseam on Fair Housing, right? So, let’s put that book-learning to use with some real-life challenges you face on site. The answer is right on the tip of your tongue. Or is it?

Fair Housing for Maintenance Workshop

Format: Half-day – conference add-on or stand-alone

Focus: Maintenance personnel come into contact with residents more than anyone else on site. And if they aren't careful, their interaction with a resident or a potential resident could be misunderstood and result in a fair housing violation. The workshop reviews fair housing basics from a maintenance team perspective and takes a look at typical situations where the well-intentioned maintenance person could be at risk of violating fair housing laws, ways to handle these without discriminating, and the importance of documentation. This interactive session Includes how to fair-housing-proof your maintenance procedures, communicating with tenants who don’t speak your language or are hearing-impaired, what to do if a tenant has a communicable disease, how to deal with clutter, what to do about suspected child abuse and more . . .

Fair Housing: Maintenance Do's and Don'ts

Format: 90-minute webinar or 1¼ - 1½ hour conference session

Focus: (Recommended for all staff – both managers and maintenance.) Maintenance personnel come into contact with residents more than anyone else on site. And if they aren't careful, their interaction with a resident or a potential resident could be misunderstood and result in a fair housing violation. This session includes a review of Fair Housing basics and explores typical situations where the well-intentioned maintenance person could be at risk of violating fair housing laws, ways to handle these without discriminating, and the importance of documentation. Includes a checklist for assessing whether company policies are providing the guidance a maintenance person needs plus a special focus on sexual harassment and communicating with persons with disabilities.

How to Write an (Approvable) AFHMP

Format: 90-minute webinar or 1¼ - 1½ hour conference session

Focus: Managers should not need a course in statistics or even an MBA to develop an AFHMP that meets the requirements of the current 935.2A form. This webinar takes the participants through the process of completing a sample AFHMP -- including learning how to navigate the data.census.gov and geocoding.geo.census.gov. The Census Bureau decommissioned the American Factfinder on March 31, 2020 so the method of retrieving the data and maps has changed dramatically. Learn how to navigate these and interpret the data, identify community contacts, work with the field office, and expedite the approval process. In the past two years Gwen has prepared, reviewed and revised more than 150 AFHMP’s for national companies and non-profits in numerous states for HUD, RD and even state agencies that require them. Let her show you how it’s done.

How to Implement an AFHMP

Format: 90-minute webinar or 1¼ - 1½ hour conference session

Focus: So, you’ve written your Affirmative Fair Housing Marketing Plan and HUD, RD or the State Agency has approved it. Now what? This course reviews where the information came from and what it means, teaches you how to implement and train staff on the plan, keep and organize records, track results, and prove ongoing compliance. We will also discuss how to perform the 5-year review of the plan, how to determine if the plan needs to be revised, and how to report the changes or lack of changes to HUD.

504 Coordination

Format: 90-minute webinar or 1¼ - 1½ hour conference session

Focus: Section 504 provides special protections to persons with disabilities who reside in HUD, HOME and RD funded properties. The penalty for non-compliance with Section 504 is loss of all federal funding. The responsibility for coordinating 504 compliance applies to all covered properties – regardless of the number of employees and regardless of whether or not you have one person named as the “504 Coordinator”. This course teaches the duties and responsibilities that properties must fulfill, who must perform them, how to define the specific role of a 504 coordinator when one is required, and how to manage 504 monitoring and compliance efficiently and effectively to prevent complaints and findings.

Fair Housing 101

Format: Half/day workshop

Focus: Fair Housing basics plus problem solving exercises and activities. Includes (1) Why Fair Housing? (2) Protected Classes and Prohibited Activities, (3) Section 504, (4) Familial Status (5) Persons with Disabilities, and (6) Key differences among HUD, HOME, RD, LIHTC, and Conventional property rules.

Format: 90-minute conference sessions or webinars as listed below:

Fair Housing Focus: Protected Classes and Prohibited Activities

Fair Housing Focus: Section 504 Basics

Fair Housing Focus: Familial Status

Fair Housing Focus: Persons with Disabilities

Fair Housing Focus: Key Differences among HUD, HOME, RD, LIHTC and Conventional Rules

Fair Housing Essentials (What You Don’t Know Can Hurt You)

Format: 90-minute webinar or 1¼ - 1½ hour conference session

Focus: An informative introduction to those new to the industry and an excellent refresher for seasoned professionals, this course includes
Why Fair Housing?; Protected Classes and Prohibited Activities; Section 504 and ADA; Key Differences - HUD, HOME, RD, LIHTC, Conventional; and What’s New in Fair Housing – VAWA Final Rule, “new” LEP, and more.

Reasonable Accommodation

Format: 90-minute webinar or 1¼ - 1½ hour conference session

Focus: Live-in aids, assistance animals, assigned parking . . . Fair Housing laws require owners/managers of rental housing to make reasonable accommodations for persons with disabilities when a rule, policy or practice interferes with the person’s right to use and enjoy their dwelling or when an accommodation will enable the tenant to comply with the lease, house rules and other requirements of tenancy. What is reasonable? What is necessary? When and how do you verify that the accommodation is related to the disability? What are the limitations on the Owner/Manager responsibility to provide the accommodation? What do you do when lease violations persist or result from the accommodation? Get the answers to these and other questions by reviewing the applicable laws and applying them to real-world examples and solutions.

Accessibility Requirements

Format: 90-minute webinar or 1¼ - 1½ hour conference session

Focus: Fair Housing Act Accessibility Guidelines (FHAAG), Americans with Disability Act Accessibility Guide (ADAAG), Uniform Federal Accessibility Standards (UFAS). Which ones apply to HUD? RD? Tax Credits?” Conventional Market Rate properties? What are the requirements for new construction? For existing properties? What makes a property “new”? And most importantly - which ones apply to my property and what does that mean for me?

LEP Plans and Fair Housing

Format: 90-minute webinar or 1¼ - 1½ hour conference session

Focus: HUD recently reminded us that failure to provide meaningful access to persons with Limited English Proficiency could be a violation of the Fair Housing Act. Why? Because national origin is a protected class. HUD and RD properties are required to periodically look at the LEP profile of their residents and market area and update their plan to provide meaningful access. But even a tax credit or market rate property could be in trouble if LEP persons face barriers to applying. Come to this session and learn what to do about LEP.

Disparate Impact: What the Courts are Telling Us

Format: 90-minute webinar or 1¼ - 1½ hour conference session

Focus: In Fair Housing law, "disparate impact" can occur when a seemingly neutral policy or practice tends to deprive the members of one protected class an equal opportunity to rent and enjoy a dwelling. Disparate impact isn't anything new - it is a basic principal of Fair Housing Law. But ever since HUD issued new guidance on disparate impact and the Supreme Court better defined it, Fair Housing advocates, aggrieved persons and their attorneys have been filing complaints against providers of housing based on "disparate impact discrimination." This course is a practical look at disparate impact, how it relates to the prohibited activities under the Fair Housing laws, and how recent court cases are treating these claims.

New Guidance on Service and Emotional Support Animals

Format: 90-minute webinar or 1¼ - 1½ hour conference session

Focus: HUD’s notice FHEO-2020-01 advises owners and managers on how to evaluate and approve or deny an applicant’s or resident’s reasonable accommodation request for an assistance animal. Find out what HUD says about on-line verifications and websites that sell ESA certifications. Learn the steps HUD recommends for processing requests for service animals versus requests for emotional support animals and requests for animals “commonly kept in households” versus requests for “unique animals”. Learn how to revise your current policies and procedures in order to utilize the guidance to the benefit of your property, your residents and your management team.