Federal, state, and local fair housing laws work to ensure that all individuals have equal housing opportunities. The Federal Fair Housing Act, the New York State Human Rights Law, the New York City Human Rights Law, and various local laws, prohibit discrimination by housing providers (including owners, real estate agents, managing agents, building superintendents, cooperative and condominium boards) and lenders (including banks and mortgage companies).
- The Federal Fair Housing Act makes it illegal to discriminate based on a person’s race, familial status (presence of children under age 18), color, national origin, religion, disability (physical or mental), or sex.
- The New York State Human Rights Law makes it unlawful to discriminate based upon a person or group’s race, creed, color, disability, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, military status, age, sex, marital status, lawful source of income or familial status of such person or persons in all forms of housing, with three main exceptions:
- One or two owner-occupied family buildings
- Room rentals in housing for individuals of the same sex; and
- Room rentals in owner-occupied housing