What are my rights when applying for housing?

The Renter's Access Act defines when and how a landlord can use a tenant's rental and credit history.

I was rejected by a landlord. What do I do now?

Tenants in Philadelphia have a right to universal screening criteria before they apply, a written explanation for any rejections they receive, and reconsideration if they are rejected.

  1. Immediately request reconsideration.
  2. Carefully read the notice of rejection.
    • If the landlord did not send an explanation, you may ask why your application was rejected.
    • Look out for prohibited screening criteria like a policy of never renting to people with an eviction record or a credit score below a certain number.
  3. Within seven days of getting the notice of rejection, give the landlord additional documentation. This may include:
    • Proof that you can afford the rent (pay stubs, a voucher, etc.)
    • Letters of recommendation
    • Explanations or proof of why problems that happened in the past will not come up again
    • If your landlord’s reason for rejecting you was not listed in the screening criteria or is prohibited, highlight the law that prohibits it

I found a place to rent. What happens now?

The landlord still denied my application. What can I do?


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