The Residential Landlords Association have published an article covering Landlords legal responsibilities when deciding who to let properties to when age is an issue.
"The equality act came into force in October and it does have some implications for Landlords.
The act consolidates existing anti-discrimination laws but also extended equality law in some areas. For example it prohibits discrimination on the grounds of age.
It has prompted questions on whether landlords can be accused of indirect discrimination on the grounds of age...So what would happen if as a Landlord you declined to let to students, who are more likely to be young? That is straightforward. There is no possibility of challenging Landlords who refuse to let to students on the basis that this discriminates on the grounds of age. This is because part 4 of the Equality Act does not apply to the protected characteristics of age or marriage and civil partnership. Therefore it is not unlawful to discriminate, whether directly or indirectly, on the grounds of age when you let, sell or, otherwise dispose of premises.
Refusing to let properties to people with pets could clearly adversely affect tenants who have guide dogs or assistance dogs. So you would have to be careful that you were not discriminating against disabled people".
Another area of potential risk for Landlords being accused of discrimination is by refusing to accept tenants who claim benefits. The Landlord would need to ensure that his intentions are clearly understood and that he/she does not want to get involved with all of the delays, procedures, rent arrears and risks associated with the LHA being paid directly to the tenant
For more guidance on the risks of breaching the discrimination laws speak to one of the personal Managers at 4you Lettings