Charlotte_Rose23

Discrimination in renting: what is illegal

12 posts in this topic

If an  individual allows prospective tenants to use a co-signer, can they refuse to lease an apartment if the co-tenant is not yet employed and is seeking a full time job?

 

co-signer's credit, income source, references and tax return all were discussed, signed forms were submitted and he was designated a integral party to the rental agreement.

 

additional applicant is clearing up errors on her credit, recently paid her mortgage off, however had an illness which prohibited her from working for 4 years.

 

Additional applicant will reside in applied for rental unit, however due to a short term illness and recovery, has been not working 2 years. 

 

At the time an application was submitted to landlord, renter was preparing employment related documents in order to secure a new job.

 

co applicant has an outstanding work track record with 38 years of stable employment. Lease includes two renters, history of employment, credit history for both tenants, (with an improving credit score for the co applicant. Rent payments will be made by Applicant 1 until co applier finds work. Income source for rent is identified with ample funds available for payment.

 

can condo owner STILL REFUSE TO RENT THE CONDO TO THE TWO APPLICANTS IF ONE APPLIER IS UNEMPLOYED BUY LOOKING. i.e. Reason cited for denying applicant is "co applicant isn't yet working."

 

i believe the condo owner owner is discriminating against the co applicant because co signer was accepted, both applicants have outstanding employment histories, not working applicant is actively searching for work. And income for rent has been established and guaranteed.

 

I believe condo owner is guilty of discrimination based on both renters track record and the fact that money for rent has been set aside. The fact that one applicant is not working is immaterial to the lease. 

 

Please advise.

 

Edited by FindLaw_RE
This post has been edited to remove personal identifying information --Moderator

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The condo owner is legally entitlled to refuse to accept a tenant based on economic uncertainty.Only certain classes of applicants are entitled to protection against discrimination based on constitutional protections.  These including race, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation.

 

If I read your post correctly, the applicant, co-applicant, and co-signer have all had rather spotty employment.  Although the funds for rent are allegedly currently available, the landlord has to consider the chance your financial condition may change during the tenancy.  There does not appear to be any illegality in your case.

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Incorrect assumptions.

 

applicant has had meticulous work, housing history.

Applicant:

38 years of employment, reaching level of Vice President at a large real estate firm

 

i just paid off my mortgage 2 years ago and due to my credit being less than perfect, due to 2008 then identity theft, my dad co signed. His credit, employment and housing history- perfect. He would be responsible for lease in the event I couldn't pay.

 

His income was deemed more than appropriate and a good co signer.

 

owner STILL declined application due to the fact I am not working due to a now recovered illness and owner was made aware I'm presently interviewing for jobs.

 

my employment was NOT a condition of the lease.  Owner indicated he ACCEPTS co signers. 

 

There is NO ECONOMIC UNCERTAINTY. My dad successfully co signed another rental the past two years.

 

owner is declining us for reasons unrelated to the fact that my dad can pay and so will I in a few months.

 

this is discrimination based on the fact I was ill and my career was put on hold 2 yrs. but co signer approved and I will retun to work by Dec 1

 

declined due to my not having a job.

immaterial!!!

read what I wrote!!

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You said at least twice that the owner turned down your application because of your unemployed status.  You are, in fact, unemployed.  You were fortunate to pay off your mortgage at a time when you were ill and unable to work.  What became of that house?  Why not sell it and use the cash to buy something else?

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Not having a current job is a valid reason to deny an applicant. You are assuming you will find a job. It is unclear if your father is currently working or not, but the purpose of a co-signer is not to be the primary source of funds. You are the one signing and living there so your economic situation is absolutely relevant. You have had no job for 2 years, no current job, AND poor credit. That is 3 strikes. It is going to be extremely difficult to qualify to rent anywhere without current employment.

 

If you paid off a mortgage, it is unclear why you are renting.

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Maybe I am not reading your post properly.  As I understand it, there will be two tenants and a co-signer.

1 hour ago, Charlotte_Rose23 said:

 

At the time an application was submitted to landlord, renter was preparing employment related documents in order to secure a new job.

 

Additional applicant will reside in applied for rental unit, however due to a short term illness and recovery, has been not working 2 years. 

 

You also mentioned in your follow up post that your credit history was less than perfect and 

 

34 minutes ago, Charlotte_Rose23 said:

owner STILL declined application due to the fact I am not working due to a now recovered illness and owner was made aware I'm presently interviewing for jobs.

 

I am not trying to assume anything.  But, I know only what you have posted.  What you have posted seems to indicate that neither you (applicant) nor you co-tenant are currently employed and both have been unemployed for periods of two to four years.  If that is true you cannot legally demand that the landlord rent the property to yo.

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1 hour ago, Charlotte_Rose23 said:

this is discrimination

 

You're right.

 

It IS discrimination.

 

It's just not ILLEGAL discrimination.

 

Now that you know the difference, find another place where the owner is more liberal.

 

 

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3 hours ago, Charlotte_Rose23 said:

If an  individual allows prospective tenants to use a co-signer, can they refuse to lease an apartment if the co-tenant is not yet employed and is seeking a full time job?

 

I'm not sure who the "co-tenant" is, but the prospective tenants obviously can refuse to lease an apartment for any reason.

 

I skimmed the rest of your post and your follow up post, but nothing else you wrote seemed to have any bearing on the question asked.  Also, what on Earth were you thinking including your phone number in the post?

 

P.S. When you shift between first person and third person, it makes it really difficult to follow who's who.

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Here are a few clarifications:

 

-My dad is co signer of the lease. He will NOT reside in the condo.

-My dad DOES have a job-he owns a few apartment buildings and rents out the apartments. 

-My dad has income from the rentals, plus a pension. His yearly income is well over $200,000.

-My back story is quite complicated but I'll try to summarize. I HAD to sell my condo, or declare bankruptcy. I refused to let my condo be foreclosed on. To avoid foreclosure I accepted a low ball offer and my "investment" of 14.5 years yielded approximately $65,000 but due to illness and not working AND a great foreclosure attorney, I lived in my condo 2.5 years without paying a mortgage. 

-I had to sell to avoid foreclosure when my attorney finally lost to CitiMortgage. I paid ALL PAST MORTGAGE payments, legal fees, taxes at closing in 11/14.

 

-I walked away with $6000 but was not foreclosed on, And everyone was paid. 

 

-I was the victim of fraud and extortion at the hands of my condo board but this is an entirely other issue.

 

-my dad co signed 2015 lease. I became ill. Couldn't work 2 yrs. Moving and want to rent 1 more year, clear off mistakes on credit report, buy new condo in 2017.

 

-In Illinois, the co signer IS RESPONSIBLE FOR THE LEASE and I'm in the middle of resuming my once highly successful career (salary and bonuses over $230,000 for many years. Career since college - 29 years - NO BREAKS.

-Leasor was ok with my credit (630 and rising) and my consigner is required due to my jobless status NOW. Leasor IS RESPINSIBLE FOR PAYMENT OF RENT. Leasor is satisfied with my dad's credit (800), income ($200,000), but declined my application because I am not working RIGHT NOW.

-My very successful career, which is noted for many achievements, huge gains for companies I directed sales and strategy (grew one firm 400%, another, my division went from 30% of overall company revenues to 85% in 6 years and accomplishments included winning several very high profile projects such as a new HQ for FBI in Midwest, highly technical BSL-4 lab for NIH- just several large new developments. Crime and illness derailed career and I'm working to get myself back on track.

- I cannot claim to have a 100% chance of securing a job by the date of new lease but I present a LOW RISK PROFILE BASED ON MY PROVEN ACCOMPLISHMENTS AND REFERENCES. My dad, as co signer with almost perfect credit, stable and high current income PLUS 2 years of history as my co signer make my application almost no risk. 

-Leasor is ok with my credit but not with my unemployed status. He knows I'm in the process of finding a job and that an illness caused the gap.

 

- since leasor accepts co signers, he is acknowledging that he accepts rent payment coming from co signer.

 

- I know he is discriminating against me because I addressed any unforeseen risk by using my dad as consigner. 

 

- why wouldn't his declining MY app Solely due to My not working NOT BE DISCRIMINATION?

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A bit though o much info in follow-up.

 

As mentioned, it is discrimination, but not all discriminattion s unlawful.  Focus on another place.

 

As a landlord, I'd wonder why your dad is unwiling to buy a(nother) place and be your landlord.  Sounds like Dad is a nice guy, however.  Trust you appreciate him.

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On 10/21/2016 at 1:02 PM, Charlotte_Rose23 said:

 

- why wouldn't his declining MY app Solely due to My not working NOT BE DISCRIMINATION?

 

It is discrimination. It is just not illegal discrimination. Most forms of discrimination are legal. Federal law only bars discrimination in renting if the basis for the decision is the tenant’s race, color, national origin, religion, sex, disability, or familial status. Illinois law bars discrimination in renting because of the tenant’s race, color, religion, sex (including sexual harassment), pregnancy, national origin, ancestry, age (40 and over), order of protection status, marital status, sexual orientation (which includes gender-related identity), unfavorable military discharge, physical and mental disability, and familial status. Unless the reason for rejecting you as a tenant is one of those listed reasons then it is not illegal discrimination. So if it is truly the case that the landlord is rejecting you because you do not have a job, that is legal for the landlord to do.

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