This is hard enough
Posted by mike newell (+355) 11 years ago
My husband and I were denied the chance to rent an apartment because of our children. We viewed an apartment in Forsyth and the manager told us that the people living below the apt we saw worked nights so it would be best if we took the opposite apt as the tenents below that one also had children and would be more understanding about the noise of little feet through the ceiling. We were to call the owner and work out the payment for 1st month and deposit. I called and was told that "it would be best if we didn't rent to people with kids" because she had had to deal with too many people complaining about the noise with previous tenents. I was floored and very upset about being denied rent because of my kids. So I looked up the Fair Housing Act online and was informed by www.hud.gov that to refuse someone a place to live (rent or ownership) because of their familial status (or race, gender, etc) is against federal law. Now I wonder if that is an all-encompassing law or is it only for HUD housing? And if it applies to everyone, what do I do now? Its hard enough to find a place to rent around here let alone rent for a descent price.
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Posted by souix (+308) 11 years ago
It applies to all housing with the exception of:

There are a few exceptions to the fair housing laws. An exemption for shared housing - rentals in which tenants share bathrooms, kitchens or other common areas - allows landlords to limit tenants on the basis of sex only. There is also an exemption on housing for older tenants which is quite common these days as the population ages and more retirement communities have been built. Landlords are exempt if the rental property leases exclusively to tenants 62 years old and up, or if 80 percent of a complex's occupied units have at least one tenant 55 or older. It if fair to say, landlords can also advertise legally and directly concerning these unique situations.

Landlords may request financial information from prospective tenants and refuse to rent to those tenants who are unfit financially to pay the asking rent. Landlords may also request references from previous landlords and opt to deny the tenant based on their past behavior. Certain areas of tenant selection like these may seem somewhat discriminatory, but landlords are allowed to use these techniques to protect themselves financially.


http://hubpages.com/hub/F...-Landlords

Good luck!
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Posted by polar bear (+516) 11 years ago
Personally, I would not want to rent somewhere where I felt unwelcome. If it were me I would find another place and not make an issue.
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Posted by souix (+308) 11 years ago
If it were me I would find another place and not make an issue.


The only problem with this philosophy is that it tends to make discrimination more rampant.in other words, it makes a joke out of the law.
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+10014) 11 years ago
If you have kids, they don't have to rent to you. In 1993 (when I was 25) I rented a home in a neighborhood that had CCRs which specifically stated no one under 18 was allowed to reside in the development. They were all a bunch of stuffy dillweeds. I was glad to finally leave.
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Posted by Wendy Wilson (+6171) 11 years ago
Webmaster, I hate to say it but you are wrong, wrong, wrong.

Here's the law in Montana.

http://erd.dli.mt.gov/hum...mchild.asp

Mike, You've been discriminated against. I suggest that you print out a copy of this page and take it to the landlord. Then request that you get the apartment you saw. Or, if you aren't interested in the apartment anymore, find a new one, then make sure the old landlord knows that you are reporting his illegal behavior to the MT. Department of Labor.
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+10014) 11 years ago
Sorry for the bad advice, I guess the law in Washington State is different than Montana.
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Posted by Bill Freese (+474) 11 years ago
More like the law was different in 1993 than in 2010. And it seems 1993 was the last year.
http://www.hum.wa.gov/Fai...dards.html

I called and was told that "it would be best if we didn't rent to people with kids"


Then you get to reply "it would be best if you did, since the law says you must." Then when the person in the other apartment says to the landlord "I told you I didn't want kids for neighbors," the landlord gets to say "I was forced to let them in by the evil government."
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Posted by MilesCity.com Webmaster (+10014) 11 years ago
Interesting, thanks Bill. Apparently the Homeowners Association where I lived didn't get the memo. I didn't leave until 1999, and they still seemed pretty adamant about it (along with many other snooty things).
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Posted by Heidi (+34) 11 years ago
I know exactly how you feel. After our house burned, we were looking for an apartment to rent until we could find a house to buy. We were also told by a landlord that they wouldn't rent to us because we had too many kids (3), frustrating when you just want a place for your family. Good luck
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Posted by G. Huss (+172) 11 years ago
The statute is 49-2-305 MCA. Note especially the definition of "familial status" in section (12) at the end of the statute.

You report illegal discrimination to the Montana Human Rights Bureau. It's toll free number is 800-542-0807. They will assist you in preparing a complaint. You have 180 days from the date of the discriminatory act in which to file a complaint.

The statute can be found at:
http://data.opi.mt.gov/bi...-2-305.htm
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Posted by ringin10 (+75) 11 years ago
I believe a HOA can set-up there development as a "senior" living area and can then set-up age limits for occupation.

A landlord can do the same thing under the same circumstances, if the dwelling is "senior" living but they must be registered with the state to do so.

I am not positive on this info though.

To flat out tell you no because you have kids is illegal and should be reported to the authorities, but forcing him to rent to you is not a good idea. Having a landlord is bad enough as it is, do you want one thats already mad at you?
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Posted by mike newell (+355) 11 years ago
Thank you everyone for your input; I'm just going to let sleeping dogs lay... We will keep looking for a place to rent elsewhere. The more and more I think about what the owner said about noise complaints makes sense because we have never lived in a apt before and my kids are naturally loud from living in the country and I don't think it would be very easy for any of us if we tried to change. And yes, I would not want to rent from someone with whom I had a rocky start. Again, thanks for all your information.
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Posted by Corrina (Sturdevant) Harrell (+77) 11 years ago
Whether you choose to rent from them or not, I think you should at least call and file a formal complaint. The landlord needs to know and be held accountable for breaking the housing laws. It may just stop them from discriminating against someone else in the future. At the very least a paper trail will be started. Who knows? One may already exist.
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Posted by Chuck Schott (+1291) 11 years ago
I'm guessing you can push the issue and rent the property until the landlord finds a legal way to get rid of you. Then you're put in the spot of moving again and all that leads to. Consider it good luck to find out what a dipsh*t this guy/gal was before moving in and find a place you're welcome.

Just some "been around wisdom" from a ex-property manager.
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Posted by Meri (+134) 11 years ago
Wow my friend just was told the week before last that she could not rent a place here in Miles City because she has children! They actually told her that! It is not fair or apparently legal for one to do this according to the web site and so I gave my friend the number. Shame on them for punishing her for having children! What is wrong with people today! The law is the law and so I hope she calls and files a report against them and they get at lease fined or something!
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Posted by mike newell (+355) 11 years ago
Thanks Chuck; when I spoke with the owner she was going on about renting us the place and dealing with complaints and eventual eviction because of the noise and bla bla bla. So I will just keep looking.
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Posted by Joe Smity (+109) 11 years ago
(smartalec mode on)

This is eastern Montana, where we make our own rules and ignore the laws on the books. Haven't people figured that out yet, given the examples set by our own local elected officials?

(smartalec mode off)

No disrespect to those who are looking for a place to rent, especially when you have kids. Been through that fight myself and it's just not worth fighting the knotheads unless you can find no other place to rent.
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