What’s “Equal Housing Opportunity?”

Fair housing rules are guidelines on how not to discriminate. Race, religion, familial status, or lawful source of income are examples of protected classes.

This may seem pretty simple. It is not.

Let’s say the prospective tenant works nights, and s/he needs to sleep during the day. The unit we’re looking at is next to a church that bongs its bells loudly every Sunday at 9am. I can’t reveal that the place is next to a church, even if the prospective tenant will be disturbed by the bells. Because they’re church bells. Mentioning a school or place of worship could make someone feel that the unit is only for people who go to that church or have kids in that school.

Quiz! Guess which one of these is discriminatory:

a.) “Great for roommates!”

b.) “Great for roommates because the bedrooms aren’t next to each other!”

c.) “Great for roommates or anyone else!”

d.) “Bedrooms aren’t next to each other!”
A, B, and C are discriminatory. Why? Because if you had a family, you may feel that you shouldn’t live in a place for roommates. Saying “Great for roommates or anyone else” would technically not be discriminatory, but we keep our opinion out as much as possible. Everyone should feel like they’re welcome to live anywhere. We put “Equal Housing Opportunity” in all of our ads.

However, “Equal Housing Opportunity” doesn’t mean “Section 8 Accepted.” Section 8 is a government housing voucher system. Vouchers can only be used in buildings qualified for Section 8. In order for a building to qualify, the government inspects and certifies the building, and the landlord must fill out lots of paperwork. Some landlords don’t want to do that. We’ve gotten calls from people who thought that “Equal Housing Opportunity” means “Section 8.” Nope. Try here if you’re looking for Section 8.

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One thought on “What’s “Equal Housing Opportunity?”

  1. […] What’s “Equal Housing Opportunity?” […]

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