Since 2019, there has been a tenfold increase in complaints of discriminatory home appraisals reported to HUD’s Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity. Recent news stories, research, and investigations have all documented instances of homes in majority Black neighborhoods or owned by Black families being undervalued compared to similar white-owned homes. Like fair housing organizations throughout the country, HECP has received recent allegations of appraisal bias in our region. If you or someone you know believes they may have experienced appraisal discrimination in the purchase or refinance of a home, contact HECP at 267-419-8918 or by using our “Report
HECP is excited to share our new comprehensive fair housing manual for landlords and property managers. This resource includes detailed information on compliance with the Fair Housing Act and Pennsylvania Human Relations Act as well as Pennsylvania Landlord Tenant Law as it pertains to the rental of private residential property.
HECP now has two new educational publications for consumers available. The first, “Think You’ve Experienced Housing Discrimination?” is a fact sheet for consumers who have experienced housing discrimination, explaining the next steps that should be taken to protect their fair housing rights. This publication provides information about the formal complaint process and outlines the proper retention of evidence in order to successfully document an allegation of discrimination.
HECP is excited to introduce our new Outreach Coordinator, Patricia Bell. Prior to joining HECP Patricia worked as a Program Manager for a fair housing organization in Nashville, Tennessee. During her time in Nashville, she also worked as part of a team to develop, “Understanding Nashville’s Housing Crisis Part 3: Residential Segregation”, an advocacy tool to support Nashville residents. She has spent time in Richmond, Virginia and Washington, DC working collaboratively with community partners, connecting people to supportive services, and advocating in partnership with clients as a Community Specialist. She received her B.A. in Psychology and Social Relations from Cheyney University
UPDATE: The Center for Disease Control has issued a new order temporarily halting evictions in counties with heightened levels of community transmission in order to respond to recent developments in the trajectory of the COVID-19 pandemic. The new moratorium is in effect through October 3, 2021 and covers counties experiencing substantial or high transmission rates, as shown on the CDC map. In order to qualify for protection from eviction under this order, the tenant will need to sign a declaration form as under the previous moratorium. UPDATE: The Center for Disease Control has issued a federal eviction moratorium that has
HECP is excited to announce the launch of our new Know Your Rights as a Renter in Pennsylvania website. This interactive online version of our comprehensive manual features searchable information on renters’ rights, resources for tenant self-advocacy, and downloadable customizable sample letters.
Through our enforcement program as of spring 2021, HECP is proud to have reached the milestone of ending discriminatory practices at over 50,000 units of housing throughout the Greater Philadelphia and Lehigh Valley regions. Thanks to the tireless work of our staff, partners, and supporters these units have been made available, without discriminatory restrictions, to members of the protected classes and their families.
The Emergency Rental Assistance Program or ERAP was created to help renters dealing with financial challenges related to the COVID-19 pandemic. For eligible households, the program offers rental and utility assistance to help Pennsylvanians avoid eviction or loss of utility service. The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 included funding for states to establish emergency rental assistance programs. Pennsylvania received approximately $569 million to administer assistance to renters, landlords, and utility providers who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and economic insecurity. Apply for CARES ACT Emergency Rental Assistance Bucks County: Online application available at www.buckscounty.org/renthelp or call 1-888-50-BUCKS for assistance applying. Chester
HECP and a Delaware County resident have entered into an agreement resolving allegations that Presby’s Inspired Life, Alician Senior Housing, and sixteen other apartment complexes in Bucks, Delaware, and Philadelphia Counties violated the Fair Housing Act by discriminating against residents with disabilities. After assisting an Upper Darby resident whose tenancy was threatened to be terminated due to minor lease violations that were a direct result of his disability-related symptoms, HECP conducted a systemic investigation of Presby’s Inspired Life documenting the unwillingness of seventeen affordable senior living complexes to permit reasonable accommodations for residents with disabilities.
The Housing Equality Center of Pennsylvania (HECP) and a Delaware County resident have entered into an agreement resolving allegations that Presby’s Inspired Life, Alician Senior Housing, and sixteen other apartment complexes in Bucks, Delaware, and Philadelphia Counties violated the Fair Housing Act by discriminating against residents with disabilities. In December 2018, HECP was contacted when a man residing at Alician Senior Housing in Upper Darby, Pennsylvania, received a letter stating that his tenancy was being terminated due to minor lease violations that were a direct result of his disability-related symptoms. HECP submitted a reasonable accommodation request on his behalf, asking