Suspect discrimination? Call (305) 651-4673!


The amended federal Fair Housing Act prohibits, nationally, any discrimination in the sale, rental, lending, insurance, or advertising of housing on the basis of: Race · Color · National Origin · Religion · Disability · Sex · Familial Status (as in whether or not you have children)

Florida’s fair housing laws provide protection against discrimination on these additional bases: HIV Status · Pregnancy

Miami-Dade County’s local fair housing laws provide protection against discrimination on these additional bases: Age · Ancestry ·  Being a Victim of Domestic Violence · Gender Expression or Identity · Marital Status · Sexual Orientation · Source of Income

Broward County’s local fair housing laws provide protection against discrimination on these additional bases: Age · Being a Victim of Domestic Violence or Human Trafficking · Gender Expression or Identity · Marital Status · Political Affiliation · Sexual Orientation · Source of Income · Veteran Status

There may be further protections under your city’s laws.


In housing-related transactions, for both rentals and sales, no one may treat you differently because of the applicable criteria above in bold.  This includes, but is not limited to, the following, when done because of those criteria:

  • Refusing to rent, sell, or negotiate for housing
  • Making housing unavailable or falsely claiming that housing is unavailable for inspection, rent, or sale
  • Setting different terms for the rental or sale of housing
  • Discrimination in a home loan or insurance
  • Pushing people to live only in certain areas (steering)
  • Pushing owners to sell or rent their homes (blockbusting)
  • Denial of a membership/amenity related to housing
  • Unequal treatment in servicing or compliance inspections
  • Making an advertisement, notice, or statement that indicates any limitation, preference, or discrimination

*    Laws also prohibit threatening, coercing, intimidating, or interfering with anyone exercising a fair housing right


A housing provider must allow a tenant with a disability to make reasonable modifications (structural changes) to living spaces or common areas – possibly at the tenant’s expense – if necessary for the use and enjoyment of the housing.  Example: the installation of a wheelchair ramp.

Also, if necessary, a housing provider must make reasonable accommodations (policy changes) in rules, practices, or services for a tenant with a disability to use and enjoy the housing – without cost, in some cases.  Example: a reserved parking space for a tenant with a disability, even though parking is usually unreserved.


Instead of a “Keep Out” sign, housing discrimination usually comes hidden behind a friendly smile and a handshake. Maybe you’re told that you’ll get a call back about your moving into an apartment, but you never get that call.  Or perhaps you’ve been clearly told that a home is unavailable to you, yet you learn that it’s still being advertised or listed.

You should also listen for phrases like these, as they may be warning signs of discrimination:

  • “Sorry, I rented that apartment just before you came.”
  • “Sorry, the price has gone up.”
  • “This building is for adults only.”
  • “Ramps?  Handrails?  I can’t make those changes, sorry.”
  • “Do you think you can afford this neighborhood?”
  • “You wouldn’t like this neighborhood.”
  • “I’ll need to pre-qualify you before I show you the homes.”
  • “Sorry, that house just went off the market.”
  • “We need at least a 25% down payment.”
  • “You haven’t been at your job long enough to get a loan.”
  • “I can’t help you; you should work with another bank.”


If you feel that you have been discriminated against, we strongly encourage you to take the following steps:

– Keep a record of any meetings and phone calls with the housing provider, noting what happened and what was said.

– Include specific information such as names, titles, meeting places, dates, and times.

– Save receipts, applications, business cards, leases, and any other documents obtained during the transaction.


MIAMI-DADE: 305-651-HOPE (4673)

BROWARD: 954-567-0545

TDD: 1-800-955-8771


LGBT Fair Housing Rights
The Fair Housing Act bars housing discrimination against both homebuyers and renters in a number of protected classes, including gender identity and sexual orientation.
Key takeaways

Almost half of LGBTQ renters fear discrimination when buying a home.

The Fair Housing Act prohibits housing discrimination against several protected classes, including sex, gender identity and sexual orientation.

Some examples of housing discrimination on the basis of gender identity or sexual orientation include a landlord refusing to rent to a same-sex couple, or a real estate agent showing that couple listings only in neighborhoods known for housing LGBTQ residents.

If you believe you’ve been discriminated against by anyone in the real estate industry, including a mortgage lender or broker, you have options.

LGBTQ homebuyer statistics

LGBTQ buyers are more likely to be buying a home for the first time compared to non-LGBTQ buyers, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR). What’s more:

LGBTQ homebuyers spent a median $245,000 when buying property, according to NAR.

Eighty-one percent of LGBTQ buyers purchased a single-family property, according to NAR, while 48 percent bought a home in the suburbs or a subdivision.

Eighty-three percent of LGBTQ buyers bought a home with a fixed-rate mortgage, with the majority borrowing a conventional loan, according to NAR.

Forty-six percent of LGBT renters fear discrimination in the homebuying process, according to the National Association of Gay and Lesbian Real Estate Professionals (NAGLREP). Thirteen percent did experience discrimination.

Mortgage loan approval rates for same-sex couples were 3 percent to 8 percent lower than for heterosexual couples, according to a 2019 study out of Iowa State University that analyzed loan data from 1990 through 2015. The same study found that same-sex couples also paid more for financing: as much as $86 million more per year, collectively.

The LGBTQ homeownership rate stands at 49 percent, according to NAGLREP. The national average rate as of the first quarter of 2023: 66 percent.

How to recognize housing discrimination

While the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) works to enforce the Fair Housing Act and address cases of discrimination, it’s up to homebuyers and renters to call out unfair practices. There are several clear signals of discrimination to watch for:

A mortgage lender who isn’t upfront about mortgage rates

A real estate agent who refuses to represent you

A seller who suddenly claims their house is off the market

If you and your partner have to work harder to get financing compared with heterosexual couples

If you are turned away from certain rental properties, even when there’s a vacancy

How to protect yourself from housing discrimination

One way to protect yourself from housing discrimination is to work with an LGBTQ-friendly real estate agent. You can find such agents through NAGLREP online, or get referrals from family and friends for the best agents in your area.

In addition to finding an agent, shop around for a mortgage lender who you can be sure won’t discriminate against you. You can consult your local Fair Housing Authority for help.
What to do if you experience housing discrimination

If you believe you’ve been the victim of housing discrimination, there are several ways you can take action:

Speak with an attorney.

File a complaint with HUD online or call 800-669-9777 (or 800-877-8339 for hearing impaired).

File a complaint with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau online.

Call the Lambda Legal help desk.

Contact your local American Civil Liberties Union.

Housing discrimination laws and resources by state

Some states have housing protection laws in place for the LGBTQ community — but not all — and others have NAGLREP chapters.

In 2020, the Supreme Court issued an important decision that extended the concept of sex discrimination from the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to include sexual orientation and gender identity. Four states have adopted what is known as the Bostock rationale, based on one of the cases involved in the decision, Bostock v. Clayton County, Georgia:



North Dakota


In the longer term, advocates and supporters of the LGBTQ community are backing the proposed Equality Act, which would amend current civil rights law to ban discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, sex and gender identity in credit and housing as well as employment, public accommodations, public education, federal funding and the jury system. The House of Representatives passed the bill in 2021, but it remains stalled in the Senate.
Frequently asked questions

Who is not protected by the Fair Housing Act?

The Fair Housing Act is relatively wide-ranging, but it doesn’t apply in some circumstances, including transactions or leases involving for sale or for rent by owner properties and some owner-occupied buildings. As a reminder, the law prohibits housing discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex (including gender identity and sexual orientation), familial status and disability.
Who enforces the Fair Housing Act?

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) enforces the Fair Housing Act through its Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity (FHEO).
What is housing discrimination?

Simply put, discrimination is prejudicial treatment. In housing, that includes anyone taking action against an individual based on one or more of the characteristics considered protected by fair housing law. This includes refusing to lend a mortgage or sell or rent a home to a member of a protected class, or evicting a member of a protected class, for no reason other than discrimination.

By David McMillin