Renters’ Rights and Housing Assistance for People with Disabilities

Living independently is a goal for many young adults with disabilities. It’s an important part of having a fulfilling life, and the drive for freedom exists regardless of ability. 

Medical advancements, supportive therapies, and architectural trends have made it possible for adult children with special needs to not only live, but thrive among their peers. Today, people with Down syndrome typically live well into their 60s, which is several decades longer than in past generations.

Many people with Down syndrome live and work independently, and so do many other adult children with disabilities. Adults with autism and other intellectual spectrum disorders are no exception.

Most parents never wish to limit their child’s potential, but fear can give way to sheltering. But the truth is, adults with disabilities can form a shelter and a family all their own under the right circumstances. 

What is a Disability under the Law?

Before getting started, it’s important to understand what qualifies as a protected disability under the law. Adult children with special needs are one specific class outlined by the Social Security Administration (SSA) who have a “disabling impairment [that] must have started before age 22.” However, there are many qualifying disabilities that receive protection under many areas of the government, including employment, housing, and transportation. 

While SSA determines one’s eligibility for disability benefits, the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) outlines protections for and definitions of people with disabilities. The ADA is featured in Chapter 126 Equal Opportunity For Individuals With Disabilities under Title 42 of The Public Health And Welfare. Other government agencies have a responsibility to enforce these ADA as well as laws pertaining to housing that are outlined in the next section.

Summary of the ADA: The ADA notes disabilities as mental or physical impairments that inhibit significant aspects of one’s daily life (e.g., everyday routine) and/or bodily functions. Many conditions fall under these definitions, but some may not qualify. The difference is generally the extent to which a condition limits a person’s activities.

Certain cases have been argued and won to obtain protected disability status for people with HIV or AIDS as well as people with mental illness.

Still, not all people with a mental illness will qualify as disabled. Specific circumstances can impact one’s rights as well. For example, someone with alcoholism may qualify for protections in cases where they obtain treatment as part of an “accommodation.” An eviction will likely be upheld under the court of law for an alcoholic who cannot pay rent because of their impaired ability to work but refuses to seek treatment; however, a protected person with an alcoholic disability might be someone who cannot pay rent due to alcoholism but asks their landlord for an accommodation that holds off an eviction until he or she completes treatment.

An illness does not need to be visible (e.g., a person who uses a wheelchair) to qualify. These are sometimes referred to as “hidden disabilities” like the cases noted above. A person with high-functioning autism or even a hearing impairment are other potential examples of a person with an invisible disability. 

A full list of disabilities outlined by the SSA shows even impairments that are considered “mild” in some circles, such as the skin disorder dermatitis, would qualify if it met the ADA’s definitions. From amputation to chronic heart failure, impairments do not discriminate and neither should a person who holds the key to your loved one’s home.    

What is Disability Discrimination in Housing? 

The Fair Housing Act and the Fair Housing Amendments Act (42 U.S. Code §§ 3601-36193631) forbid discrimination against tenants or prospective tenants because of a disability. It governs both renting and owning a home. 

  • Sec. 802.[42 U.S.C. 3602] Definitions: There are three specific definitions that pertain to renters with disabilities: 

    • “Dwelling”: “any building, structure, or portion thereof which is occupied as, or designed or intended for occupancy as, a residence by one or more families, and any vacant land which is offered for sale or lease for the construction or location thereon of any such building, structure, or portion thereof.”

    • “To rent”: “includes to lease, to sublease, to let and otherwise to grant for a consideration the right to occupy premises not owned by the occupant.”

    • “Discriminatory housing practice”: “an act that is unlawful under section 804, 805, 806, or 818 of this title.” 

Summary of the FHA for renters with disabilities: Sec. 804. [42 U.S.C. 3604] of the FHA prohibits landlords from exclusionary practices, such as refusing to rent or negotiate rental terms to or with someone with a disability. This includes lying about the availability of an apartment or rejecting the lawful right to reasonable accommodations (covered in detail below in the section titled Understand the term “reasonable accommodations.”). 

In addition protections for people with disabilities, Section 804 also identifies protected classes related to race, color, religion, sex, familial status, or national origin. 

Fair housing isn’t just a nicety – it’s the law. Know your rights. There are specific and fine details related to disability compared with other points of discrimination, such as race or religion. The law applies to not just a person’s disability but living arrangements of people with disabilities and the accessibility of rental housing. 

Generally speaking: Persons with disabilities are entitled to privacy about their disability; they should be treated equally to someone without a disability, and should not be excluded from an apartment due to a landlord’s fears or misgivings related to the disability; the person with a disability has a right to “reasonable accommodations” related to their special needs, even if their needs are different from the policies or structures related to the apartment or building; persons with disabilities may also make reasonable modifications that support their special needs. 

Living Arrangements for Adults With Disabilities

Establishing a home outside the nest looks different for each adult child with special needs. This guide will cover situations related to host homes and self-reliant apartment living; however, your child may find freedom in the following arrangements as well: 

  • Group homes – In the right group home environment, residents are given responsibilities and choices that relate to their personal goals. Some group homes provide socialization opportunities and basic observation, while others may administer some medications. There is a risk for abuse, so thorough research is key. 

  • Assisted living facilities – These organizations are similar to group homes, but they provide more medical care as well as emergency services. An assisted living facility may work well for someone with a physical condition that compromises their mobility or health. As with a group home, the quality of care should be a primary concern. 

  • Shared living – This option is an excellent way for two people with special needs to live together and support each other through friendship and accountability. Adults are less likely to feel isolated, but they are still able to establish a home without renting alone. 

  • Disability communities – These communities are part of a growing trend, and the services and amenities they offer are dramatically different from one organization to the next. Some are simply neighborhoods that unite people in the same way 55-plus communities connect seniors; others offer a structured program with their housing, such as a ranch with therapy animals and on-site long-term lodging.

Surprisingly, in these disability-designed living situations, owners and staff members knowingly or unknowingly engage in discriminatory behavior. 

According to Section 802 and the definition of a dwelling as outlined above, each of these facilities are designed for occupancy and are therefore subject to anti-discrimination protections. The types of discrimination may look different based on the building and accommodations, but that doesn’t make the practices any more or less legal. 

Homes that specialize in “exclusive community care” for people with disabilities could be discriminating if they fail to admit your loved one based on disability-related conditions. 

For example, a group home that toutes a community for people with Down syndrome but refuses to house a person with cerebral palsy could be engaging in discrimination. Inquires about type of disability are also protected under the FHA, which makes them illegal as part of an application process for an assisted living facility. Yes, you could file a complaint even if the facility offers medical care. 

It’s important to note that some state and local laws may provide unique restrictions or exemptions for managed housing, including the home types outlined above, outside of the federal laws in place. Consult a lawyer if you’re unsure of which regulations protect your loved one based on the specific facility you’re considering.

The idea of leases, contracts, and fees for support services can feel overwhelming, but gathering knowledge on renters’ rights for adult children with special needs is a big step toward the threshold of your child’s adult home. 

What to Expect: Finding an Apartment for Adults With Special Needs

From positive representations of self-reliant people with special needs to the challenges they face, this section provides a comprehensive look at what it means for young adults with special needs to find an apartment all their own. 

Positive Stories of Adults Living Independently With a Disability 

The Census does not collect specific information on adult children with special needs and independent living; however, learning about the true stories of people with different types of disabilities who have lived and thrived on their own can help dispel the fears and myths associated with young adulthood for people with special needs. 

The media might like us to believe that everything is bad news. Use the right keywords, and you just might find a story that supports your fears. But if you’re a parent of an adult child with special needs, you’re likely here because you believe independence is possible for your child. Maybe you’re unsure about where to start.  

Positive representations of people living independently with disabilities are a good place to start. Here are just a few, diverse examples of real people who have lived alone or alone with a partner despite what society thinks they’re capable of.

Of course, not all stories have happy endings – but there’s a common theme in these triumphs: Emotional support from parents is the glue that binds the book of a hero’s journey. 

Barriers to Apartment Living for Adult Children With Special Needs

Apartment living looks different for everyone: Some call a studio home; others, especially people with limited mobility, may require more space. But before you and your child start knocking on the doors of potential homes, it’s important to know the potential issues waiting on the other side. Understanding your housing rights and the challenges ahead will give you the courage to answer listings with confidence. 

Financial concerns are no small matter. A child with a special need presents a financial challenge for some families, which may limit a parent’s ability to save. Further, adult children with disabilities may find it difficult to earn a living wage. The following action items will prepare you for the road ahead. 

  • Understand the limits of SSDI and SSI. Social Security Disability (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) are two forms of government income assistance. Because SSDI applies to people who have worked recently, for a number of years or “work credits,” your child likely won’t qualify for SSDI right away. In the future, however, if he or she works for at least five years and then applies for SSDI benefits, your child may receive some financial support. SSI is a more common option for adult children with disabilities since it’s available to any low-income individuals regardless of work history. The low-income limits refer to a person with a disability whose assets equal no greater than $2,000. It’s important to note that neither option is a quick fix: A coverage decision is not guaranteed and often takes time; an applicant’s claims are also subject to review (usually every three years at minimum). Further, the cost of living is generally higher than the average SSI payout, which can be as low as $763 per month.

  • Explore low-income housing. Section 811 is a government-funded housing program from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The initiative is also known as “Supportive Housing for Persons With Disabilities.” Unlike SSI, it does not provide an income check; instead, the program unlocks access to low-income housing by designating subsidized buildings or complexes for people with limited funds who have special needs. These subsidized housing options are generally more affordable than unsubsidized apartments because they are income-contingent, meaning residents usually pay only a portion of their income (around 30%) toward their cost of living. You and your child must apply via their regional HUD office to receive assistance. 

  • Review job programs. Your son or daughter could possibly pay rent with their gainful employment. Government, private, and non-profit institutions often offer employment assistance and job training specifically geared toward people with disabilities. 

  • Consider relocation. Whether you’re looking for a better cost of living, more access to special programs, or options for disability-friendly apartments, relocation may be the answer.  

  • Exhaust grant opportunities. Free money is hard to come by, but it isn’t impossible if you can demonstrate a need. Apply for all grants related to your child’s condition to maximize the potential for financial benefits. Just remember, a grant doesn’t guarantee reliable future income. In most cases, you’ll need to reapply or find financial alternatives if the grant is discontinued. See the sections below for more information on assistive support. 

Housing discrimination is an unfortunate reality for people living with disabilities – especially those looking for their first rental. As a parent of an adult child with special needs, you are an ally in the fight for fair housing and the rights of your child afforded by the FHA. 

Housing associations, landlords, subletters: All of these organizations and people can discriminate either knowingly or unknowingly. It’s up to you to advocate for your son or daughter. 

The following are examples of violations related to each of the main tenets of the FHA, or the sections of the law that support the rights of people with disabilities.

  • Example of Privacy Violation: A landlord who casually tells other tenants that they should watch out because their new neighbor has schizophrenia and is prone to paranoia. 

  • Example of Exclusivity Violation: A landlord who fears a person in a wheelchair will not be able to properly navigate the apartment building without injury. 

  • Example of Accommodation Violation: A landlord who limits overnight guests and refuses to change this policy for a person with a disability who may require a night nurse. 

  • Example of Modification Violation: A landlord who bans a tenant from installing disability-related pull-up bars or guide rails in a home, despite repeated requests for permission.  

The following action items for disabled renters’ rights education will give you and your child an upper hand against discriminatory practices. 

  • Understand the term “reasonable accommodations.” Everything from allowing a service animal in a pet-free apartment building to modifying the accessibility of a kitchen is on the table. A reasonable accommodation does not need to be a written request. A person can request a change in person via a conversation; however, it is a smart idea to follow up with an email or letter that clearly states the request. If the answer is “no,” it doesn’t end there. A landlord cannot simply deny an accommodation because it isn’t favorable. Unless the landlord can prove (with documentation) that the repair, modification, or policy change will unreasonably and negatively impact the building or the landlord’s budget, then the accommodation must be granted. Failing to grant a just accommodation is discriminatory and against the laws set forth by the FHA. Understand the specific situations related to reasonable accommodations:

    • Question add-on fees. Reasonable accommodations include all changes to a tenant’s living experience, from policies to physical structures that support the tenant’s abilities. They are considered “reasonable” because they don’t pose a significant financial burden on a landlord or tenant, which means it’s unreasonable (sometimes unlawful) for a landlord to request more monthly rent. In most cases, the cost of the accommodation will get passed to the tenant in the form of an extra deposit.

    • Understand some fees are unlawful. Fees related to modifications must be in the form of a deposit and not an additional monthly cost. Modifying monthly rent based on accessibility needs is discriminatory. Deposit funds or fees cannot be related to a medically necessary aid and the way it impacts the dwelling (e.g., a wheelchair or service dog). 

    • Know that modifications may impact your timeline. Prepare your child for the possibility of move-in delays based on the time it takes for certain modifications. Talk about the benefits of choosing housing that’s already accessible. 

    • Know that the modifications shouldn’t take forever. If the landlord stops communicating or takes an excessive amount of time to comply with an accessibility request, it is unlawful. 

    • Make a lawful request on behalf of your child. It is within your rights as a family member to request a reasonable accommodation on the behalf of your child with a disability. 

    • Understand the right to privacy. A landlord is not allowed to share information about your child’s disability with other rental occupants. An example of a violation related to reasonable accommodations might include flyers around the apartment building that announce construction due to a new tenant with a disability.  

    • Plan to reverse modifications. In certain situations, you may opt to modify a rental on the landlord’s behalf. In these cases, unless the modification included an ADA compliant change that was not in place but should have been, you will likely need to reverse the renovation. The ADA, or Americans With Disabilities Act, is a federal standard for design standards related to all areas of public life, including employment, transportation, and housing. ADA compliance is regulated under the FHA by HUD. An example of a common ADA complaint fixture is a wheelchair ramp at the main entrance to an apartment building. 

    • Obtain approval for any changes. It is very likely that your accessibility modification will be well within the law; however, it is your responsibility to contact a landlord and obtain approval before making the change.

  • Beware of idle chit-chat. Under the right circumstances, anyone can make a probing question sound harmless – just watch an episode of “Law and Order.” But this is a tactic that could be used for discrimination. Future romantic partners, details about your child’s disability, even your child’s age – all of these are topics you don’t need to broach, even casually. 

  • Make a complaint. There’s a whole host of reasons to complain about a landlord, but discrimination over a disability is a legitimate issue over which you can take action. If you’ve exhausted other forms of resolution, such as contacting your local housing authority, file an official federal complaint. While it won’t necessarily help your child secure that landlord’s apartment, it will ensure other people with special needs don’t have to face the same abuse. 

Remember this: Your son or daughter has you as their ally, but some adults must face discrimination without support. You are supporting all people with disabilities each time you exercise your child’s right to fair housing. If you have any concerns about disabled tenants’ rights, consult a lawyer. 

Other considerations that could delay or impact your process are far less complicated. Sometimes, they’re quite mundane and occupy the minds of any first-time renters. Add the following to your child’s new apartment checklist. 

  • Scope out access to public transportation. Obtain a list of access points such as bus stops or subway lines and start your apartment search there. Your child will have greater autonomy if he or she can commute freely. 

  • Look for a place close to home. According to Pew Research, a combined 34 million adults with disabilities need support navigating their home or completing daily tasks. Choose a hyperlocal rental so you can be on call should your child need you. 

  • Understand the risk vs. reward of a roommate. People with special needs can thrive with a supportive roommate, especially one they can relate to. Still, you’ll want to consider how these ties bind. It’s important to review the lease thoroughly. It might even be a good idea to sit down with the roommate's family and draft a formal agreement that complements the lease, preventing either party from prematurely backing out of the rental without some financial obligation. 

  • Consider the lease period. If this is your child’s first time on his or her own, choosing a shorter lease term would be wise. Weigh the pros and cons of a six-month lease. In some cases, the monthly rent may be higher for the period, but you’ll have more flexibility to explore your child’s independence without a year-long commitment. 

  • Read the lease carefully. As discussed in the point on roommates above, breaking a lease will likely result in some financial obligation for the lease signer. If you’re concerned about your son or daughter’s commitment to their new apartment, the best option is communication. Talk to the landlord about any restrictive lease terms and ask if he or she will offer more lenient terms. The landlord doesn’t have to comply with your request, but it doesn’t hurt to ask. Negotiating is a normal part of the rental process, and you shouldn’t feel ashamed about personal requests of any kind. 

  • Beware of older properties. The last thing you want is to rush over every time something breaks. Happy visits should be the goal. It is the landlord’s responsibility to fix major issues that impact livability and safety; however, the minor repairs, especially those caused by an inexperienced renter, are a bit less cut and dry. Further, while a landlord should fix things in a timely matter, it’s not uncommon for them to need a nudge. An old apartment could come with so many “nudges” that you’ll eventually feel shoved against its wall. 


To read more about what to expect from the rental process as well as information on independence in the special needs community, review the following resource articles:

Ability to Benefit: Housing Assistance for Adult With Disabilities 

Assistance programs for people with special needs come in many forms. It’s time to determine the right assistance options for you and your child; you’ll need to ask yourself tough questions. To get started, review the following questions with your family. 

Establishing a Reference for Assistance Needs 

Can my child safely live on his own or will he require some supervision? Housing programs aren’t about grants and financial assistance only. Some programs actually support the independent living arrangement, either through a non-profit or private organization that promises some kind of on-site presence in close proximity to your child’s apartment.  

What can I contribute, if anything, to my child’s cost of living? This is an important point as many grants and assistance programs often use parental support to determine a person’s eligibility. Be honest with yourself about this number, but understand that many aid programs often believe you can contribute much more than you feel comfortable with. Each organization will use a different calculation method, but this tool might offer a similar estimation of what you might expect to contribute to another aid program. 

How will I provide for my child’s independent living in the event of my death? Regardless of whether you’re providing complete financial support or splitting the difference through grants, SSI, and other programs, you’ll need to establish a safety net for your child. This safety net should concern not only the finances but administrative support as well. Many grants and special programs require complicated applications and renewal processes. It’s a smart idea to designate a default Power of Attorney who may handle all the fine details of your child’s independence in the event of your passing. 

Blueprint for Support: Finding a Program for You or Your Child

General Financial Aid and Grants 

  • National MPS Society Extraordinary Experiences Grant: fill out this form to apply for a $1,000 grant that also provides a platform for people with MPS to share their experience. 

  • The Elsie S. Bellows Fund: explore this option if your child needs assistive technology that could support his or her independent living.  

  • Easterseals Grant Search: bookmark this website search term and check back often, as this disability focused organization gathers info on numerous grants from many related charities. 

  • GoFundMe: use this free fundraising service to ask family and friends for help with security deposits or other apartment-related startup costs. 

Federal Assistance Programs

Examples of State Assistance Programs

Other Helpful Initiatives 

Examples of Disability-Friendly Communities Throughout the U.S. 

  • Autism Housing Network: explore the largest database of disability-friendly residential living to find the right community in your area. 

  • Quest Village (FL): uncover a fun independent-living community, with some staff support, designed specifically for people with developmental disabilities. 

  • Main Street (MD): find joy in an apartment community with designated housing for people with disabilities and a team that supports them. Non-members can also enjoy social events.  

  • The Shupin House (CA): discover an apartment community that supports residents through by teaching independent-living skills. 

Advice for Parents: Legal and Safety Concerns for all First-Time Renters and Strategies for Adult Children With Disabilities 

All first-time renters are bound to land in hot water at some point – even if that busted water heater only runs cold. For adult children with intellectual and developmental disabilities, first-time renter troubles can feel insurmountable – and in some cases, parents may not know to help until it’s too late. 

Adult children with disabilities can end up on both sides of the law. Unfortunately, when it comes to victimhood, they have a risk factor of 4 to 10 times greater compared with those who do not have impaired abilities. 

You already know the discrimination challenges that face your son or daughter at the beginning of the rental process. Sadly, the challenges don’t end there. But wait: You aren’t powerless! 

Armed with carefully planned talking points, you can stay ahead of a potential housing crisis. Explore the following scenarios with your child:  

Unexpected Evictions

  • What is a legal reason for an eviction? An eviction notice is most commonly served when a renter fails to comply with the lease terms (e.g., misses a rent payment) or does something illegal on the property (e.g., sells drugs).

  • Why it shouldn’t happen: An eviction should never be related to a disability in any way per the Fair Housing Act, this includes a reasonable accommodation request; however, you can halt an eviction process by requesting an accessibility accommodation. Further, a legal eviction would never result in less than 30 days notice. 

  • Talking point: It’s important to let your child know that he or she would never be in trouble with you if they received a notice of any kind. Keeping an open line of communication will show your child you’re a trusted partner in their quest for independence, which will ensure you’re the first to know about an unlawful landlord. 

Unwanted Visitors

  • Who is an acceptable visitor? A visitor should be someone you know and trust or someone you don’t know, but you’ve contacted (e.g., a pizza delivery person). 

  • Who you don’t have to invite someone in:

  • Talking point: Visitors are another name for guests have just stopped by for a moment and/or have shown up unannounced. It is OK not to invite someone inside who’s just stopping by, even if you know them. Your apartment, your choice. 

Exploitation for Money

  • What should you normally use money for? You should use money for bills, food, supplies, and even personal items – such as clothing. 

  • Why you shouldn’t give it away to just anyone: Money is valuable and some people need it so badly that they will lie to get it. It will be a rare occasion when you should offer or give someone money.

  • Talking point: Beware of people who say they will pay you back. Once the money is gone, there is no way of knowing if you will see it again. This could negatively impact your budget

Overstaying House Guests

  • What is a normal guest? A guest is similar to a visitor, but generally, he or she is someone you’ve planned to invite into your home for a specific period of time. 

  • When it’s time to leave: It is not normal for a guest to move in. If someone asks for a key, uses your home as a place to get take a shower, or leaves personal items that they repeatedly come back to use (e.g., a toothbrush), know that this is not typical guest behavior. 

  • Talking point: It is OK to ask a guest to leave. Ask politely first and then demand assertively if they ignore your request. (Note to the parent: In some states, long-term house guests (or squatters) may have rights to a property, and it could require legal action to remove them; it’s important to look for signs that anyone other than your child is living in the apartment, even if you never see the person.)

Sharing Food and Supplies 

  • What is normal sharing or borrowing? Sharing your resources is a nice thing to do when it feels good – like when you’re cooking for a friend or letting a neighbor borrow sugar for baking. When you live in a community, sharing is somewhat common. 

  • When it’s too much: Sharing your personal items shouldn’t leave you feeling like you have nothing left for yourself. For example, a neighbor or guest who constantly asks for toilet paper but never offers to replace all the rolls they’ve been given. 

  • Talking point: Sharing should always come from an offer from you based on your desire or an answer to someone’s question. If someone takes something from you without your permission, that is stealing. This extends to people who ask to temporarily borrow something, like a smart tablet, but never give it back.

Protecting Your Adult Child With a Disability: Other Legal and Safety Considerations

  • Respect the law. Disabled tenants’ rights vary, sometimes drastically, by state. Know the rules of your local government because they protect landlords too. An example of a common tenant right that varies by state is right of access by the landlord and reasonable notice for entry. In Florida, for example, law specifies that a landlord must provide at least 12 hours notice to a tenant before entering their apartment. In Georgia, however, no set amount of hours are specified by law. In both states, landlords are not granted “unreasonable access” (e.g., they can not enter a tenant’s home without at least some notice and/or they cannot enter a tenant’s home in the middle of the night). 

  • Ask for a key. However, don’t expect that you’ll get one, and be prepared to answer to the landlord if you duplicate a key despite the lease terms. It’s best to negotiate an extra key before you sign the lease. 

  • Understand co-signing. Again, tenants’ rights vary by state, so naturally, potential lease terms will vary as well. Co-signing not necessarily equal tenancy according to lease terms; therefore, a co-signer would not automatically gain the right to enter an apartment. In most cases, however, you can coordinate a wellness check with a landlord in the event of an emergency. 

  • Explore the need for guardianship. This legal order has pros and cons. On one hand, complete or limited guardianship of a person with special needs could protect them in situations where they are being exploited; on the other hand, exercised guardianship (e.g., legally compelling your child move back home) could push him or her way. 

Independent-Living Checklist for Parents of Adults With Disabilities 

Conversations about big issues are a must, but the matter of basic readiness should continue to be your main concern. Before you seek independent living options for your adult child, ask yourself: Is he or she really ready for this major life event? Review the questions below. 

If your answer is no to at least three of these questions, your adult child may not be ready to leave home; still, that shouldn’t mean it’s off the table for the future. You’ve considered independent living enough to make it this far, which means you believe in your child and their right to exercise autonomy. Work with your child to answer the questions on this list, or choose community housing that supports their goals while providing important life skills via an empowering staff presence. 

Letting Go With Love: A Bitter-Suite Goodbye 

Advocate for your child. Remember, it’s completely appropriate and legal to request accommodations and file complaints on your child’s behalf. It’s important to be a partner as well. Sometimes this means taking a step back and allowing your adult child to exercise their independence by participating in the process. Seek legal advice if you’re unsure what your rights are or how to proceed.


If you’re a helicopter parent throughout the process, you might inhibit the confidence necessary for your child to live on their own. Your child will make decisions big and small in your absence, so encourage those decision-making moments while he or she is still under your guidance during the rental process.