Fair Housing Essentials

Learn the basics of Federal Fair Housing regulations that apply to multifamily properties

Fair Housing Essentials® (FHE®) provides participants with a working background in the requirements of the Fair Housing Act and other important civil rights statutes that pertain to Fair Housing compliance. The Fair Housing Act covers all rental housing with more than four units. It makes no distinction between federally assisted housing and market rate housing. If you are involved with a federal housing program, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act applies as well.

In addition to lectures, the program has participants work together to explore actual civil rights case studies. The instructor assumes the role of an investigator and assesses hypothetical “fines” for incorrect or discriminatory actions, increasing the learning power of the program.

Participation in the FHE program can be the difference between compliance and non-compliance and between expensive lawsuits and lowered risk.

What you’ll learn:

The Federal "protected classes"

Learn who is and who is not covered by federal Fair Housing. Understand the difference between federal protected classes and state and local protections.

Fair housing requirements as they relate to individuals with disabilities

Learn what constitutes a disability. Understand the difference between a “reasonable accommodation" and a "reasonable modification" and the extent to which an owner or manager must go to provide them. Find out how to verify the need for an accommodation or modification and what costs are the owners and what are the residents. Learn the difference between a pet and an assistive animal, and how this impacts a property’s rules about pets. As an added bonus, learn an employer’s obligations to individuals with disabilities.

Other applicable federal laws including the Americans with Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act

Find out how ADA, Section 504 and fair housing differ and when they overlap. Learn HUD/Justice Department guidelines regarding “reasonable accommodations”

Fair housing requirements as they relate to familial status

Learn what constitutes discrimination on the basis of family status and composition. Understand the circumstances under which children can be barred from living at a property.

Special topics and fair housing

Find out how Fair Housing laws apply to individuals addicted to illegal narcotics. Learn the difference between permitted and prohibited types of inquiries.


Download FHE Course Description


CERTIFICATION OPTION: Fair Housing Roundtable

Students interested in becoming certified in Fair Housing should look into Fair Housing Roundtable (FHR), a two-day program with a four-hour certification exam occuring on Day Two.


Duration:  One day
Exam: None
Format:  Lecture and group discussion
Prerequisites:  None
Audience:  Anyone involved in rental housing 
Provided:  Manual, case studies 
Bring: Calculator (required); highlighter, sticky notes 

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