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Does the association have the power to require owners to provide the name, address, and phone number of tenants? By Erika R. Finley, Esq.

On this topic, the law is different for condominium associations and home owner associations.

Ohio Revised Code 5311.09 requires condominium owners to provide contact information regarding both themselves and tenants of the condominium to the board.  Specifically, the statute requires owners to report the following information:

  • The owner’s physical home address
  • The owner’s home and business mailing address
  • The owner’s home and business telephone numbers
  • The names of all occupants, including any tenants, of the unit
  • The occupants or tenant’s home and business mailing address
  • The occupants or tenant’s home and business telephone numbers

Under 5311.09, a condominium owner’s duty to provide the above-outlined information for occupants and tenants is mandatory.  Therefore, it is proper for boards to request this information from owners, when the association learns of a title transfer or believes information on file is out of date.  The statute requires owners to provide the information within thirty days after taking title or acquiring an interest in the property.  However, most owners may not be aware of this law or may not know who to contact.  We recommend the association use a standard form to request occupant information from the owner.

While Ohio Revised Code 5312 governing homeowner associations does not contain a similar provision, the planned community act still requires tenants in a homeowners association to comply with the covenants, conditions, and restrictions set forth in any recorded document for the association.  Additionally, some homeowner associations’ recorded documents may contain a restriction prohibiting rentals or a covenant requiring owners to provide contact information for tenants similar to that of 5311.09.

Nothing in Ohio law permits a community association, regardless of whether your association is a condominium or homeowner association, to conduct any type of screening for prospective tenants.  Any question that the association asks on an occupant information request form, other than names, addresses, and telephone numbers, may be considered discriminatory by the Ohio Civil Rights Commission as a violation of Fair Housing laws that prohibit discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin.