Fair Housing Rights and Obligations
All real estate advertised herein is subject to the federal Fair Housing Act, which makes it illegal to advertise “any preference, limitation, or discrimination because of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin, or intention to make such preference, limitation or discrimination.” Real estate advertised is also subject to state and local fair housing laws, which prohibit discriminatory advertising in additional categories, such as sexual orientation, gender identity, and source of income.
We will not knowingly accept or permit any advertisement for real estate that is in violation of the law. All persons are hereby informed that all dwellings advertised are available on an equal opportunity basis.
When it comes to renting a property, several state and federal laws were enacted to ensure equal opportunity in housing for all people. The Civil Rights Act of 1866 prohibits all racial discrimination in the rental of property. Moreover, the Fair Housing Act declares a national policy of fair housing throughout the United States, making illegal any discrimination in the lease or rental of housing, or making housing otherwise unavailable, because of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin.
Other laws also impact the lease or renting of a property. Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act prohibits discrimination against persons with disabilities in places of public accommodations and commercial facilities. The Equal Credit Opportunity Act makes discrimination unlawful with respect to any aspect of a credit application on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, marital status, age or because all or part of the applicant’s income derives from any public assistance program.
In addition, state and local laws often provide broader coverage and prohibit discrimination based on additional classes not covered by federal law. For example, many states and localities include express protections against discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity or expression. Several states and localities also prohibit discrimination based on a potential tenant’s source of income or background history. This means that landlords cannot refuse to rent property because a potential tenant will use a subsidy or a voucher, such as a Section 8 voucher, to pay rent. In these states and localities, it is also illegal for landlords or housing providers to post advertisements or listings that discourage tenants who plan to use subsidies from applying (including language like “no vouchers” and “vouchers not accepted”).
As a landlord you have a responsibility and a requirement under the law not to discriminate in the rental of property on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin. You cannot instruct the licensed broker or salesperson acting as your agent to convey for you any limitations in the rental because the real estate professional is bound by law not to discriminate. Agents in a real estate transaction also are prohibited by law from discriminating on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin. They are prohibited from complying with a request from the landlord to act in a discriminatory manner in the lease or rental. Moreover, a landlord cannot establish discriminatory terms or conditions in the rental, deny that housing is available, or advertise that the property is available only to persons of a certain race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national original.
As someone seeking to rent a property, you have the right to expect that housing will be available to you without discrimination or other limitations based on race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin. This includes the right to expect equal professional service, the opportunity to consider a broad range of housing choices, no discriminatory limitations on communities or locations of housing, no discrimination in the insuring of housing, reasonable accommodations in rules, practices and procedures for persons with disabilities, and to be free from harassment or intimidation for exercising your fair housing rights. In many states and localities, you also have the right to expect that housing will be available to you without discrimination based on additional classifications like source of income. This means that a landlord cannot refuse to rent to you or treat you less favorably because you plan to use a subsidy or voucher to pay your rent.
IF YOU SUSPECT DISCRIMINATION:
Despite our zero tolerance policy, much of the information regarding real estate and related matters in this Site is provided by third parties. As such, there may be an instance of potential discrimination by these third parties that we are not yet aware of. If you see potentially discriminatory language in a listing or suspect discrimination by one of these sites, please contact our staff at firstname.lastname@example.org. Complaints alleging discrimination in housing may be filed with the nearest office of the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), or by calling HUD’s toll free number, 1-800-669-9777 (voice), or 1-800-543-8294 (TDD). You can contact HUD on the internet at http://www.hud.gov.
If you believe that you have been the victim of discrimination, you can also contact your state’s Attorney General or a local legal aid organization.