What Is Part 109 Under Fair Housing Advertising?

Man holding a small house model & a prohibition sign

The Fair Housing Act of 1968 was enacted to prevent discrimination in housing practices based on factors such as race, color, religion, sex, national origin, familial status, and disability. One crucial component of this act is Part 109, which addresses fair housing advertising.

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In this blog post, we will delve into what Part 109 under Fair Housing Advertising entails and why it’s essential for promoting equitable housing practices.

The Fair Housing Act: A Brief Overview

Before we dive into Part 109, let’s briefly discuss the Fair Housing Act itself. The Fair Housing Act prohibits discrimination in housing-related activities, including renting, buying, financing, and advertising. 

The act aims to create a level playing field for all individuals seeking housing, regardless of their background.

Part 109: Fair Housing Advertising

Part 109 of the Fair Housing Act focuses specifically on fair housing advertising practices. Its main goal is to prohibit discrimination and discouragement in advertising against certain federally protected classes so that they are not discouraged from pursuing those opportunities.

 This provision covers a wide range of advertisements, including those in newspapers, online listings, brochures, billboards, and more.

Key Provisions of Part 109

  1. Prohibition of Discriminatory Advertising: Part 109 prohibits any form of advertising that indicates a preference, limitation, or discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, familial status, or disability. This means that advertisements cannot include any language or imagery that suggests a preference for or against specific groups of people.
  1. Use of Inclusive Language: Advertisements should use inclusive language that does not single out any particular group. Specifying that a property is suitable for a particular gender or family type, is a Fair Housing Act advertising violation. Advertisements should focus on the property’s features and amenities.
  1. Equal Opportunity Statement: Many advertisements include an equal opportunity statement that highlights the commitment to fair housing practices. This statement typically states that the housing provider does not discriminate based on protected characteristics. While this statement is not mandatory, it is often included to demonstrate compliance with fair housing laws.
  1. Steering and Segregation: Part 109 also addresses the practice of steering and segregation. Steering involves guiding individuals to or away from certain housing options based on their protected characteristics. Advertisements should not perpetuate stereotypes or contribute to segregated housing patterns.

Why Part 109 Matters?

Part 109 is a critical component of the Fair Housing Act because it prevents the perpetuation of discriminatory practices through advertising. 

By ensuring that housing advertisements are fair and inclusive, this provision promotes equal access to housing opportunities for everyone. 

It also helps create an environment where individuals can make informed decisions about housing without being influenced by bias or prejudice.

Enforcement and Compliance

Enforcement of Part 109 falls under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

If a complaint is filed regarding discriminatory housing advertisement, HUD will investigate the matter. 

Those found to violate fair housing advertising regulations may face penalties, fines, or other corrective measures. 


Part 109 under Fair Housing Advertising plays a crucial role in upholding the principles of fairness and equality in the housing market.

 By prohibiting discriminatory advertising practices and promoting inclusive language, this provision contributes to creating a housing environment where everyone has the opportunity to find suitable housing without facing discrimination. 

In addition to fair housing practices, advertising rental property effectively can help attract tenants who are aware of your available units. 

As we continue to work towards a more equitable society, understanding and adhering to Part 109 is essential for all housing providers and advertisers.

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