In the past it wasn’t uncommon for some landlords across the United States to have a some type of ban on renting to anyone with a criminal record but times have changed and thanks to recent changes by the Federal Government criminals can sue landlords for discrimination because failure to rent to anyone with a criminal record is a violation of the Fair Housing Act.
Arrests Must Not Ban Be Reason to Ban Applicants
Thanks to recent guidelines released by Julian Castro, HUD secretary, landlords must make a distinction between arrests and convictions when deciding not to rent to an tenants because they have a criminal record.
Federal Officials give landlords some flexibility here by stating that a landlord can prove that their decision to not rent to someone can be considered to be justified based on the severity and or nature of the applicants crime but landlords need to tread carefully here because the legal system is changing and thousands of inmates are being paroled across the United States after serving time for minor drug convictions.
All Applicants Must Get Fair Consideration
Thanks to a recent interview we know that HUD Secretary Julian Castro supports this new legislation because he feels that some individuals with criminal records who are trying to re-enter society after a previous crime are being unfairly banned from some rental properties regardless of the nature or severity of their crimes.
Besides not renting to certain individuals with criminal records landlords must not ban Latino’s or Blacks because this practice has had what’s known as “disparate impact” on people of color in the past and has never been justified.
Landlords are still allowed to ban or exclude anyone who is found to be manufacturing or selling drugs since drug related crimes are the only ones that are exempt under the Fair Housing Act.
To learn more about the latest legislation affecting your rental property, or to speak with us about our property management services contact Goldenwest Management today by calling us at (602) 765-4750 or click here to connect with us online.