Satellite Dish Installation

Residents may wish to install a satellite dish to get lower cost television programming or to access television content that is not available through over-the-air broadcast, cable TV, or increasingly, fiber optic television services. 

As of April 2004, federal law states that residents must be permitted to install satellite dishes if they are under three (3) meters in diameter and placed in an area such as a patio or balcony where only the tenant has access (property staff not counted).  These requirements are governed by regulations promulgated by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

FCC rules Over-the-Air Reception Devices (“OTARD”) regulations require that owners permit residents to install their own antenna's or satellite dishes, as long as they are being installed in non-common areas where the resident has "exclusive" use.

Apartment management may disallow the installation of antennas (and satellite dishes) on balconies or patios where the it may protrude beyond the railing, and on common areas such as exterior walls or rooftops, as well as those installations that would require drilling into the building, and may thus impose rules and requirements at the owner's discretion concerning installation in said areas, including a rehabilitation fee and/or a renters' insurance policy.  Further, restrictions that do not impair a resident's ability to receive reception are permitted; clearly-defined, legitimate safety restrictions necessary for safety are also permitted.

For more information, see the Federal Communication Commission website with up-to-date information and frequently asked questions and answers.