Landlord Tenant Oregon – What Is Illegal Housing Discrimination?
Most landlords don’t start out investing in rental properties with the goal of engaging in illegal housing discrimination, it’s something that typically happens when a landlord doesn’t know or understand landlord tenant Oregon laws and they become embroiled in a landlord-tenant dispute, accused of discrimination.
If you’re just getting started with owning rental properties in Portland, or elsewhere in the United States, this article will offer you more information on illegal housing discrimination and how to avoid it.
Landlord Tenant 101 – What Is Illegal Housing Discrimination?
State law also makes clear that housing discrimination is unlawful whether it is deliberate and intentional or has the effect – intentional or not – of having a greater or ‘disparate’ impact on people who are in a protected group.
In most cases, neither federal nor state housing law protects people from discrimination based on age if the person being discriminated against is 18 years or older. (However, the Equal Credit Opportunity Act prohibits discrimination based on age in credit transactions that include the purchase of a home.)
Federal and state laws cover most kinds of residential housing. There is one limited exception involving protection of people with children, and that exception is senior housing. In senior housing, either all the residents must be age 62 or older; or the housing is part of a federal or state program that provides housing solely for seniors; or 80 percent of the units have at least one resident over age 55. However, the regulations controlling senior housing do not always make it impossible for elders to have children living with them. Elders should get specific legal advice on this question.
Housing providers are allowed to set landlord tenant rental criteria and make reasonable rules for their tenants. They are not allowed to apply criteria or rules that would be unfair to a person who is a member of one of the categories described earlier. Therefore, it is illegal to do any of the following to a protected group member:
- refuse to provide the opportunity to rent or buy;
- refuse to negotiate a rental or purchase;
- lie about the availability of housing;
- treat an individual differently concerning the terms, conditions or privileges of sale or rental in providing services;
- make statements or advertise about intending to exclude certain protected categories of people;
- evict or attempt to evict, or harass, intimidate or threaten the individual, a guest, or a member of that person’s household.
As of Jan. 1, 2014, it is illegal to refuse to rent to a tenant because of a previous arrest, certain kinds of criminal convictions, or an eviction that happened more than five years earlier.
As of July 1, 2014, it is unlawful to refuse to rent to prospective tenants for the reason that they have a Section 8 voucher or another form of housing assistance.
Fair housing laws cover landlords, their managers, property management companies, mortgage companies, financial institutions, homeowners’ insurance companies, cities, counties, housing authorities and any other entity that provides housing.
People with disabilities have the right to make physical changes – such as ramps, grab-bars or widened doorways – to their housing unit if such changes are needed, but most landlords do not have to pay for these changes. Landlords do have that obligation in certain subsidized housing. Landlords must make other reasonable exceptions to rules that interfere with a disabled person’s ability to live comfortably in his or her home.
A housing provider may establish reasonable occupancy limits. Landlords may set reasonable rules about the behavior of tenants; those rules cannot single out children for restrictions that do not apply also to adults.
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When you choose us to manage your property, you can have confidence in our property management services, including peace of mind in knowing that we will professionally manage all aspects of your property from tenant screening and placement, to maintenance and more!
For more information about the property management services that we can offer you, contact us today by calling (503) 447-7735 or click here to connect with us online.