Sex (including gender identity and sexual orientation)

You are protected against unlawful housing discrimination on the basis of your sex (including gender identity and sexual orientation). The Fair Housing Act protection from sex discrimination include sexual orientation and gender identity. That means it is illegal to discriminate on the basis of your sex, your sexual orientation and/or your gender identity in the sale, rental, and financing of dwellings and in other housing related transactions. If you are denied an opportunity to rent or buy a home because of your sex, your gender identity and or your sexual orientation , you are a victim of illegal housing discrimination. It is also illegal for landlords and other housing providers to treat current residents or tenants differently because of their sex or their perceived or actual gender identity or sexual orientation.

Examples & Warning Signs of Sex Discrimination:

  • People who are pregnant or are on maternity leave are delayed or denied home loans or offered less favorable terms.
  • Increasing rent or threatening eviction because of the birth of a child or for adding a child to the household.
  • Policies that have a negative impact on survivors of domestic violence because of the actions of their abusers (for example, evictions due to calls to police).
  • Advertising that indicates a preference for or against individuals based on sex, gender identity or sexual orientation.
  • Sexual harassment by the landlord or landlord’s agents or employees.

Sexual Harassment

Sexual harassment in housing is illegal and is a form of sex discrimination prohibited by the Fair Housing Act. There are two main types of sexual harassment: (1) quid pro quo and (2) hostile environment sexual harassment.

  • Quid pro quo sexual harassment occurs when a housing provider offers something (for example, reduced rent, repairs, or stopping an eviction) to a resident in exchange for sex. Quid pro quo sexual harassment is illegal even if the offer is accepted because of the difference in bargaining power between a housing provider and the tenant.
  • Hostile environment sexual harassment occurs when a housing provider, including employees such as office staff and maintenance workers, subjects a resident to conduct of a sexual nature (for example, unwanted or suggestive compliments) that is unwelcome and sufficiently severe or persistent that it interferes with or deprives the resident of their right to use and enjoy their housing.

Click here to learn more about sexual harassment in housing and how you can fight back to feel Safe at Home.

If you believe you were discriminated against because of your sex, file a complaint.