What is housing discrimination:
Housing discrimination is the restriction on the access to housing against potential home renters and buyers by landlords, property managers, brokers or lenders on account of their color, class, religion, nationality, disability, sex or familial status, etc. According to the Fair Housing Act of 1968, it is illegal in the United States to discriminate against home buyers or renters based on the abovementioned conditions but bias still remains stubborn to eradicate.
How to fight against housing discrimination:
- Get state or local assistance
If you suspect you are facing the housing discrimination, visit your state or local fair housing commission for help. Testers may be dispatched to find out whether you are really in a situation of housing discrimination or not. If you want to file a complaint against the discrimination, make sure to take documents such as the copy of the lease, rent receipt, utility bills with you when you go to your local or state commission. As soon as your case is accepted, you will be able to sign a formal complaint and your landlord or renter will receive the copy of the complaint and a hearing notice.
- Get federal help
Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is the federal agency in charge of enforcing the Fair Housing Act. In addition to local assistance, you can also get federal help by calling the HUD at 800-669-9777 or file a complaint by visiting HUD complaint website, where languages like Spanish, Korean, Chinese or Vietnamese are available for people from various backgrounds. Upon receiving your complaint, HUD will have the obligation to investigate your complaint in due time and sometimes they will try to help you and the other party to reach a conciliation agreement.