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Fair Housing means that individuals have equal housing opportunities and the right to choose where they want to live without regard to their race, color, religion, sex, national origin, family status, or disability. These rights are protected by the Federal Fair Housing Act. The Ohio Housing Law provides additional protection based upon ancestry and military status.

The purpose of Fair Housing is to protect our freedom of residence by ensuring that we are all able to live in the housing of our choice which we can afford. Fair Housing laws apply to all housing and housing related transactions, including: rental, sales, insurance, lending, etc.



Acts, Ordinances and Executive Orders

  • Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990
  • Title II prohibits discrimination based on disability in programs, services, and activities provided or made available by public entities. HUD enforces Title II when it relates to state and local public housing, housing assistance and housing referrals.
  • Architectural Barriers Act of 1968
  • The Architectural Barriers Act requires that buildings and facilities designed, constructed, altered, or leased with certain federal funds after September 1969 must be accessible to and useable by handicapped persons.
  • Age Discrimination Act of 1975
  • The Age Discrimination Act prohibits discrimination on the basis of age in programs or activities receiving federal financial assistance.

Related Presidential Executive Orders

  • Executive Order 11063
  • Executive Order 11063 prohibits discrimination in the sale, leasing, rental, or other disposition of properties and facilities owned or operated by the federal government or provided with federal funds.
  • Executive Order 11246
  • Executive Order 11246, as amended, bars discrimination in federal employment because of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.
  • Executive Order 12892
  • Executive Order 12892, as amended, requires federal agencies to affirmatively further fair housing in their programs and activities, and provides that the Secretary of HUD will be responsible for coordinating the effort. The Order also establishes the President's Fair Housing Council, which will be chaired by the Secretary of HUD.
  • Executive Order 12898
  • Executive Order 12898 requires that each federal agency conduct its program, policies, and activities that substantially affect human health or the environment in a manner that does not exclude persons based on race, color, or national origin.
  • Executive Order 13166
  • Executive Order 13166 eliminates, to the extent possible, limited English proficiency as a barrier to full and meaningful participation by beneficiaries in all federally-assisted and federally conducted programs and activities.
  • Executive Order 13217
  • Executive Order 13217 requires federal agencies to evaluate their policies and programs to determine if any can be revised or modified to improve the availability of community-based living arrangements for persons with disabilities.


The Department of Justice ("DOJ") and the Department of Housing and Urban Development ("HUD") are jointly responsible for enforcing the federal Fair Housing Act, which prohibits discrimination in housing on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, familial status, and disability.


  • Reasonable Accommodations
  • One type of disability discrimination prohibited by the federal Fair Housing Act is the refusal to make reasonable accommodations in rules, policies, practices, or services when such accommodations may be necessary to afford a person with a disability the equal opportunity to use and enjoy a dwelling. A “reasonable accommodation” is a change, exception, or adjustment to a rule, policy, practice, or service that may be necessary for a person with a disability to have an equal opportunity to use and enjoy a dwelling, including public and common use spaces. Since rules, policies, practices, and services may have a different effect on persons with disabilities than on other persons, treating persons with disabilities exactly the same as others will sometimes deny them an equal opportunity to use and enjoy a dwelling.

  • Learn More About Reasonable Accommodations
  • Another type of disability discrimination prohibited by the federal Fair Housing Act is a refusal to permit, at the expense of the person with a disability, reasonable modifications of existing premises occupied or to be occupied by such person if such modifications may be necessary to afford such person full enjoyment of the premises.
  • Reasonable modifications can include structural changes to interiors and exteriors of dwellings and to common and public use areas. A request for a reasonable modification may be made at any time during the tenancy. 
  • In the case of a rental, the landlord may, where it is reasonable to do so, condition permission for a modification on the renter agreeing to restore the interior of the premises to the condition that existed before the modification, reasonable wear and tear excepted. 


State law defines landlord and tenant rights and responsibilities in the Ohio Landlord-Tenant Law.

Learn More About Ohio Landlord-Tenant Law.


The County of Summit contracts with local fair housing agencies to provide education and outreach, to monitor local housing practices and to ensure equal housing opportunity.

Fair Housing Contact Services



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