Virginia Fair Housing Laws

In the State of Virginia, it is illegal for landlords to discriminate against tenants based on the following:

  1. Refusing to sell or rent after the making of a bona fide offer, refusing to negotiate for the sale or rental of, or otherwise make unavailable or deny a dwelling to any person because of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, elderliness, familial status or disability
  2. Discriminating against any person in the terms, conditions, or privileges of sale or rental of a dwelling, or in the provision of services or facilities in connection therewith, to any person because of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, elderliness, familial status or disability
  3. To make, print, or publish (or cause to be made, printed, or published) any notice, statement, or advertisement, with respect to the sale or rental of a dwelling, that indicates any preference, limitation, or discrimination (or an intention to make any such preference, limitation or discrimination) based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, elderliness, familial status or disability. The use of words or symbols associated with a particular religion, national origin, sex or race shall be prima facie evidence of an illegal preference under this chapter which shall not be overcome by a general disclaimer;
  4. Representing to any person because of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, elderliness, familial status or disability that any dwelling is not available for inspection, sale, or rental when such dwelling is in fact available
  5. Denying any person access to membership or participation in any multiple listing service, real estate brokers' organization, or other service, organization or facility relating to the business of selling or renting dwellings, or to discriminate against such person in the terms or conditions of such access, membership, or participation because of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, elderliness, familial status or disability
  6. ncluding in any transfer, sale rental, or lease of housing, any restrictive covenant that discriminates because of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, elderliness, familial status or disability or for any person to honor or exercise, or attempt to honor or exercise any such discriminatory covenant pertaining to housing; or
  7. Inducing or attempting to induce to sell or rent any dwelling by representations regarding the entry or prospective entry into the neighborhood of a person or persons of a particular race, color, religion, sex, national origin, elderliness, familial status or disability.
  8. Refusing to permit, at the expense of a person with a disability, reasonable modifications of existing premises occupied or to be occupied by any person if such modifications may be necessary to afford such person full enjoyment of the premises.
  9. 9. Refusing to make reasonable accommodations in rules, practices, policies, or services when such accommodations may be necessary to afford a person with a disability equal opportunity to use and enjoy a dwelling.
  10. Failing to design and construct a multifamily dwelling built for first occupancy after March 13, 1991, in such a manner that the dwelling units and public and common use areas are accessible to persons with a disability.

Virginia’s Additional Prohibited Actions

  1. Failing or delaying maintenance or repairs of sales or rental dwellings;
  2. Limiting the use of privileges, services or facilities associated with a dwelling;
  3. Discouraging the purchase or rental of a dwelling or exaggerating drawbacks or failing to inform any person of desirable features of a dwelling or a community, neighborhood, or development;
  4. Communicating to any prospective purchaser that they would not be comfortable or compatible with existing residents of a community neighborhood or development;
  5. Assigning any person to a particular section of a community neighborhood or development or to a particular floor or section of a building;
  6. Denying or limiting services or facilities in connection with the sale or rental of a dwelling, because a person failed or refused to provide sexual favors;
  7. Failing to accept, consider, negotiate, process or accurately communicate a bona fide offer;
  8. Using different qualification criteria or applications, or sales or rental standards or procedures, such as income standards, application requirements, application fees, credit analysis, or sales or rental approval procedures or other requirements;
  9. Denying or delaying the processing of an application made by a purchaser or renter or refusing to approve such a person for occupancy in a cooperative or condominium;
  10. Employing codes or other devices to segregate or reject applicants, purchasers, or renters; refusing to take or to show listings of dwellings in certain areas because of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, elderliness, familial status or disability; or refusing to deal with certain brokers or agents because they or one of their clients are of a particular race, color, religion, sex, national origin, elderliness, familial status or disability;
  11. Indicating through words or conduct that a dwelling, which is available for inspection, sale or rental, has been sold or rented;
  12. Refusing to provide municipal services or property or hazard insurance for dwellings or providing such services differently;
  13. Threatening, intimidating or interfering with persons in their enjoyment of a dwelling;
  14. Intimidating or threatening any person because that person is engaged in activities designed to make other persons aware of or encouraging such other persons to exercise rights granted or protected by this part; or
  15. Retaliating against any person because that person has made a complaint, testified, assisted, or participated in any manner in a proceeding under the fair housing law.

For more information about Virginia Fair Housing Laws please go to:

http://www.dpor.virginia.gov/FairHousing/

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