Housing Discrimination Article


Fair Housing For All: It's the Law!

Housing Discrimination Still Exists

Despite a wide range of housing opportunities throughout Arizona, the doors of homes, apartments, mobile homes and condominiums are closed to many citizens because of illegal discrimination. Complaints and testing by the Fair Housing Centers in Arizona indicates that discrimination is a common practice, frequently undetected by home seekers who are unlawfully denied access to housing.

Fair Housing Laws

The U.S. Civil Rights Act of 1968 declared a national policy of fair housing throughout the United States. Title VIII of that federal law, as amended by Congress in 1988, prohibits discrimination based upon the race, color, religion, sex, national origin, handicap or familial status (children) of those seeking housing.

In Arizona, State Fair Housing laws are equivalent to federal law. In some communities local ordinances also make it illegal to deny housing based on age, marital status or sexual orientation.

The Fair Housing laws protect the right of each home seeker to equal opportunity in the purchase, sale, rental, leasing, financing, insuring and advertising of housing.

Signs of Housing Discrimination

  • Refusing to sell, rent, or show available housing
  • Only showing housing in areas of minority concentration
  • Harassment or intimidation
  • Housing advertisement with discriminatory statements or displaying no minorities in group scenes
  • Differing terms for identical dwellings
  • Extensive questioning prior to offering or providing information about the availability of housing
  • Being told the dwelling is not appropriate for your family
  • Terms or availability change between phone contact and visit
  • You are not contacted after acceptance of your application
  • Dwelling has an available sign but you are told it is not available
  • Refusing to make a reasonable accommodation or allow a modification to make the dwelling accessible for a person with a disability
  • Refusal to finance the purchase of a home or write property insurance or offering non-standard and unfavorable terms.

If You Believe That You or Someone You Know Has Been Discriminated Against

  • Record the experiences. Write down names of individuals, companies, addresses, phone numbers, dates, times and witnesses involved.
  • Make notes of conversations or incidents that might indicate discrimination.
  • Keep copies of advertising, letters or other relevant information.
  • If you know a person of the opposite sex, or different race, etc., who received a different answer than you did, make a note of their name and address.
  • Contact a legal aid organization near you.

Comments:

On 8/23/07
Paula said
I believe i was discriminated against when i was homeless and went to the HUD housing department in Surprise and was told all they had available was The Projects,believe me when your homeless you do care where its at.

QUESTIONS

  • how long does a property management company have to accept or deny your application for occupancy? How do they have to respond if you are denied?
  • Is it the managers job to notice tenants if any kind of substance if being strayed around the premises. As a precautionary measure, specially those with younger kids?
  • I had an affair wth the man guy who wasnt running the housing authority before and I was 8 and 9 on the housing list now that he is now running the place and to do personal issues wth me he moved my housing up to 99 so I had to eventually had to leave Williams I kept all paperwork updated I was given an excuse and told on personal call I'd never get it so what can I do I feel threatened and dont know what to do and I'm on disability
  • Can a Landlord deny a rental due to a felony arrest from 10 years ago that was dismissed in court?
  • Asked to surrender and have my photo ID withheld from me during a routine inspection of a unit for possible rental. First told was for safety reasons then told "was AZ law". Since it is not the law (?)- was this an attempt to swipe all information from DL without my permission while I was looking at the rental unit or was this an deliberate act of discrimination?
  • Are landlords allowed to park across the street and watch a unit at 2:30am ? only to later use what he or she saw as evidence in an informal hearing to terminate a tenant?
  • I went in to paseo park apt paid my 40.88 application fee and also my 100.00 holding fee I was approved signed the rental agreement for a apt took proposal to section 8 it was denied talk to property manager and explained it was a mistake she said okay but there's another problem the apt I gave you the tenants decided not to move and I have no other apt that will fit in your budget now if I'm not mistaken didn't she suppose to find me another apt or tell the tenants they have to move because she rented the apt to someone else what are my legal rights now I'm living in a roach infested property
  • My tenant lied about having a puppy. My home is a no pets home. She moved the dog in when she moved it. When we found about the dog we gave her a 10 day notice letter that she had no idea was coming. Within 18 hours she went on a website and got a letter saying that the puppy is now an emotional support dog and if we try to evict her she will sue us under Federal Housing Act. What are my protections? Add said no pets, applications said no pets, lease says no pets and she lied. Also advertised in local neighborhood website for a pet sitter. So, it wasn't an emotional support dog then
  • Can a landlord dictate where a child sleeps? Saying a child over 2 “needs” their own bedroom. Not only is this nickel and diming parents to pay the extra rent for more rooms it feels extremely discriminating and invasive of parental rights. Telling me where my child can and can’t sleep, basically not allowing bedsharing or trying to get families with kids to move elsewhere cause they can’t afford adding another bedroom to their budget.
  • Can my landlord tell me I am violating my rental agreement for something that is not on the agreement?

STORIES

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FIND LEGAL HELP

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OTHER LEGAL RESOURCES

  • State Bar of Arizona
    www.azbar.org
  • Maricopa County Bar
    www.maricopabar.org
    Referral number 602-257-4434
  • Pima County Bar
    www.pimacountybar.org
    Referral number 520-623-4625
  • National Domestic Violence Hotline
    800-799-7233
  • Bankruptcy Court Self Help Center
    866-553-0893
  • Certified Legal Document Preparer Program
    Link

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