Updated as of 8/29/04.
California State and Federal laws protect your right to be treated fairly
in connection with any real estate-related transaction. Whitcombe
& Co. takes fair housing laws very seriously.
Federal and state fair housing laws create a level playing field for all
homebuyers, and prohibit discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex,
disability, familial status, and national origin.
Civil Rights Act of 1866
The federal Civil Rights Act of 1866 prohibits all racial discrimination
in the sale or rental of property.
Civil Rights Act of 1968 and 1988 Amendment
In leasing or sale of residential property, the Civil Rights Act of 1968
expands the definition of discrimination to include not only race, but also
national origin, color, and religion. The Fair Housing Amendments Act of
1988 further broadens the definition to include age, sex, and handicapped
Fair Housing Act
The federal Fair Housing Act of 1988 and Title VIII of the Civil Rights
Act of 1968 are referred to as the Fair Housing Act. The Act prohibits
discrimination in the sale, lease or rental of housing, or making housing
otherwise unavailable because of race, color, religion, sex, disability,
familial status or national origin.
Americans with Disabilities Act
The federal Americans with Disabilities Act prohibits discrimination
against persons with disabilities in commercial facilities and places of
Equal Credit Opportunity Act
The federal Equal Credit Opportunity Act makes it unlawful to
discriminate against anyone on a credit application due to race, color,
religion, national origin, sex, marital status, and (with certain exceptions
for senior housing communities) age or because all or part of an applicant's
income comes from any public assistance program.
California State Laws
Unruh Civil Rights Act
The Unruh Act guarantees states that all persons in California are
entitled to full and equal accommodation, advantages, facilities,
privileges, or services in all business establishments without regard to
their sex, race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, or disability,
and/or (with certain exceptions for senior housing communities) age.
Fair Employment And Housing Act (FEHA)
FEHA prohibits discrimination in supplying housing accommodations on the
basis of race, color, religion, sex, marital status, national origin,
ancestry, age (with certain exceptions for senior housing communities),
familial status or disability.
Your Rights and Responsibilities
As a home seller or landlord, you are obligated not to discriminate in
the sale, rental or financing of your property on the basis of race, color,
religion, sex, disability, familial status or national origin. Likewise, you
cannot do so through your licensed broker or salesperson. Such persons are
also bound by anti-discrimination laws. You may not set any discriminatory
terms or conditions in a purchase contract or a lease. Additionally, you may
not deny that housing is available or advertise a property's availability
only to persons of a certain race, color, religion, sex, disability,
familial status or national origin.
Real Estate Professionals' Responsibilities
Real Estate agents, mortgage brokers and loan officers in a real estate
transaction may not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex,
marital status, national origin, ancestry, age (with certain exceptions for
senior housing communities), familial status or disability. Likewise,
they may not follow such instructions from a home seller or landlord.
What To Do if You Feel the Law Has Been Violated
Discrimination complaints about housing may be filed with the nearest
office of the U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) or by
calling HUD's telephone numbers, (202)708-1112 (Voice) or (202)708-1455
(TTY). Or contact HUD on the Internet at http://www.hud.gov/fhe/fheo.html.
You can also Contact the California Department of Fair Employment and
Housing (FEHA). You can find contact information for FEHA at their website,