National Fair Housing Month supports affordable housing by helping make affordable housing a reality for many working families, representing many backgrounds, races, and colors. The Fair Housing Act was enacted into law in 1968 to protect Americans from discrimination when selling or buying houses, including rental properties and mortgage financing, based on color, race, and even gender. According to the Fair Housing Amendments Act, it is illegal to discriminate against any person because of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin.
The Fair Housing Act protects consumers from following unlawful, discriminatory housing practices in:
- the rental or sale of housing properties, including residential lots
- the establishment of real estate brokerage services
- the marketing or advertisement of properties for sale or rent
- the appraisal process of housing properties
- the housing finance process
Marcia L. Fudge, Secretary, Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), states that “Fair Housing Month is a time to recommit to our nation’s obligation to ensure that everyone has equal access to safe, affordable housing. Unfortunately, housing discrimination still exists, from individuals and families being denied a place to call home because of the color of their skin or where they come from, to landlords refusing to allow persons with disabilities to keep assistance animals, to individuals being denied a place to live because of who they love.”
Are you a victim of unlawful housing discrimination?
Anyone who believes they have suffered unfair housing practices or discrimination can file a complaint with HUD’s Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity at (800) 669-9777. You can also report housing discrimination online by using the following link: https://www.hud.gov/program_offices/fair_housing_equal_opp/online-complaint#_How_to_File
To learn more about Fair Housing, contact UF/IFAS Extension Gadsden County at (850) 875-7255.