Housing And Property

New law in force

The Equality Act came into force on 1 October 2010. Some of the information on this page may be out of date.

As well as equality legislation to protect you from being discriminated against, the Human Rights Act 1998 gives you a number of human rights that are particularly relevant to housing and property:

  • the right to own, and enjoy the ownership of, property
  • the right to respect for private life
  • the right to respect for family life
  • the right to respect for your home.

In this section of the website, you can find out about your rights in relation to housing and property. You can also find out about what the law defines as discrimination, and there is information about the limited circumstances in which discrimination may be lawful. There is protection from discrimination on grounds of your gender, sexual orientation, race, religion or belief, or disability.  There is currently no legislation making unlawful discrimination on the grounds of age in areas other than employment and related activities.

If you are a disabled person, the Disability Discrimination Act also gives you certain rights when renting property.

The term ‘housing and property’ includes residential accommodation such as flats, houses, bungalows and mobile homes, and caravan sites, as well as ‘bricks and mortar’ housing, and commercial premises. This section covers tenants’ rented accommodation and dealing with landlords, letting agents, and owners or managers of premises, as well as owner-occupied accommodation and housing or property owned by housing associations and public authorities.

The word ‘property’ is used in this section to mean all of the above types of premises.

This section does not cover the legal responsibilities of those providing housing and related services, whether in the public, private, community or voluntary sectors. Find out more about the responsibilities of service providers.

This section does not cover in full the responsibilities of public authorities to promote equality and tackle discrimination. Find out more about the responsibilities of public authorities.

Neither does this section cover in full people living in residential care homes or sheltered accommodation. Find out more about your rights in relation to social care.

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