Discrimination when buying, renting or living in property

Explains what laws protect you from discrimination when you buy, rent, or live in a property (or place), what you can do if you have been discriminated against, and where you can get support and advice. Applies to England and Wales.


Sometimes people are treated worse because of their mental health problem. This is called discrimination and, if you experience it when you are renting, buying or living in a property (or place), you may have a legal right to challenge it.

Quick facts

  • The Equality Act 2010 is the law that gives you the right to challenge discrimination. This law may protect you from discrimination when you:
    • buy, rent or live in property (covered in these pages)
    • are at work, applying for a job, made redundant or dismissed (see our legal pages on discrimination at work)
    • use services or public functions (see our legal pages on discrimination in everyday life)
    • are in education
    • join some private clubs and associations.
  • To get protection under the Equality Act, you usually need to show that your mental health problem is a disability. 'Disability' has a special legal meaning under the Equality Act. To find out if your mental health problem is considered a disability, see our page on disability.
  • If your landlord is a public authority, they will have an additional duty to eliminate discrimination, called the public sector equality duty.
  • If you think you have experienced disability discrimination when buying, renting or living in a property, there are several things you can do to make a complaint.

We believe that when you're living with a mental health problem, you need somewhere you can call home. Find out more about Mind's campaigning work on housing and mental health.

Please note

  • This guide covers discrimination from the point of view of a person with a mental health problem.
  • This guide applies to England and Wales.
  • This guide contains general legal information, not legal advice. We recommend you get advice from a specialist legal adviser or solicitor who will help you with your individual situation and needs. See Useful contacts for more information.
  • The legal information in this guide does not apply to children unless specifically stated.


This information was published in December 2017. We will revise it in 2019.

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