“It’s my property, so I can rent to whomever I like.” This attitude may be understandable, but landlords must realize that today there are legal limits on the landlord’s right to choose the tenant.
Even if a landlord’s “people preferences” are unreasonable, strict, or quirky, the landlord may not, under the federal Fair Housing Act (42 U.S. Code 3601-3619, 3631) refuse to rent to a tenant if it is based on an illegal basis, such as race, religion, national origin. gender, disability, or sexual orientation.
The Fair Housing Act also applies to any person that deals with tenants and prospective tenants on behalf of the landlord, including real estate agents and property managers. Even if the property owner did not personally discriminate against a prospective tenants, the landlord may still be held liable.