Fair Housing vs. Unfair Housing

Do you know the difference?

Knowing the difference between fair housing and unfair housing isn't as obvious as you might think. This blog aims to present a variety of important and interesting fair housing issues.

If you're an apartment professional, avoid costly mistakes by reading the stories of others who — even with good intentions — learned compliance lessons the hard way. (For the easy way, click here.)

If you live in an apartment, get familiar with your rights when it comes to housing discrimination, as well as your options for seeking justice.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Fair Housing Help: Who Makes Decisions When Apartment Hunting With a Disability?

One way that landlords commonly get into fair housing trouble is by making assumptions about a prospective tenant's housing needs based on their perception of the person's apparent disability. (See, for example, my post entitled, "Paying Dearly for Fair Housing Violations, Despite Good Intentions," October 9, 2009.)

If you're looking for an apartment with a disability or you're a landlord who encounters prospects whom you believe or know have a disability, remember that when it comes to wants and needs, the apartment hunters are the decision-makers—whether or not they have a disability.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Fair Housing Help: What's a 'Qualifying Disability'?

Many people know that federal fair housing law protects prospects and tenants against discrimination based on disability. But what the Fair Housing Act (FHA) considers to be a disability may surprise you by being broader or narrower than you think.

People who have a disability that fits the FHA's definition have the right to some important protections against discrimination. Tenants and landlords alike should check out this summary of the characteristics of a qualifying disability under the FHA.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Fair Housing Help: Learn From Others' Experiences or Share Your Own

One way to find out more about housing discrimination is to learn from others' actual experiences.

That's why I set up a "Readers Respond: Dealing With Housing Discrimination" resource so that apartment prospects and tenants have an outlet to share their fair housing experiences.

If you've got a fair housing story to tell, here's your chance to say what happened, how you dealt with the situation, and what you learned that might lead you to act differently next time.

Check the resource periodically for new stories.