CASA has organized and empowered tenants to demand adequate, sustainable, and liable housing in our communities. Everyone should have a safe place to live, yet many tenants, especially Black and brown renters, face real challenges securing a stable, habitable and affordable home.

CASA has worked intimately with the immigrant community to address the urgent needs of families in rental housing and organize neighbors to build power. 

Fair Housing Laws

The Fair Housing Act is the federal law that makes it illegal to discriminate in any housing transaction. One cannot discriminate on race, color, national origin, religion, sex, disability or familial status.

The state of Georgia follows federal housing laws. In Georgia, if a tenant has a disability that requires an accommodation, a request must be submitted. 

The Lease 

A landlord can request a tenant for their Social Security number, employer’s name, and consent for a credit report. Landlords should be careful about language included or left out in leases. In Georgia, it is illegal for a lease to say that a landlord will not follow local or state laws.


Landlords in Georgia cannot evict a tenant without first going through a court process. During the eviction process, the tenant is allowed to stay in the property until a court decision is made. If a landlord tries to evict a tenant for not paying rent, the tenant has seven days to pay the rent owed. If the rent is paid within that time period, a landlord cannot evict the tenant.

Assault and Domestic Violence

If a tenant is being evicted based on either 1) a current or previous status as a victim of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking or 2) criminal activity related to an act of domestic violence by a member in tenant’s household, a tenant can obtain protection under the Violence Agaisnt Women Act. 

Utilities and Shut Offs

If a tenant is receiving service from a Public Service Commission-regulated electric provider, the service provider must give the tenant five (5) days written notice before turning off the utility. 

If the tenant is faced with eviction, it is illegal for a landlord to knowingly and willfully suspend a tenant’s utilities until after a court decision. 


Under Georgia law, landlords have a duty to keep a unit in safe and habitable condition. The landlord must maintain the building structure, keep utilities in working order, and exercise ordinary care to keep the unit safe for tenants. 

When requesting a repair to a landlord, Georgia law encourages to have it in writing and signed. It is also encouraged to not stop paying rent if a landlord has not completed a repair. Not paying rent can violate a lease. 

Security Deposits

In Georgia, a security deposit protects a landlord if a tenant moves out of the property owing money or having damaged the unit. If a tenant gives proper notice and vacates the unit without owing rent and causing damage, the landlord must return the security deposit within one month of moving in.

Take Your Tenant Power to the Max

What You Should Know

Questions to ask yourself BEFORE renting:

    • Is this property affordable? 
    • Is the location of this property convenient for me?
    • Is this property and the surrounding area well maintained and safe?

BEFORE you move in:

    • Record, in writing, any defects the property has before you move in. 

Be a responsible tenant:

    • Pay your rent when due. 
    • Get and save all receipts for all payments to your landlord. 
    • Be sure to comply with all terms and conditions specified on your lease. 

CASA’s legal team can provide advice and guidance on other housing-related matters to CASA Members. If you are facing imminent eviction from your home, please call (240)-553-8970. For other housing-related issues, please call CASA’s Legal Hotline at (866)-553-8970 for an appointment.