Could refusal to rent available units qualify as discrimination?

Perhaps. Discriminating against a potential tenant who is a member of a protected class, including: Race, Color, Religion, Gender, National Origin, Familial Status or Mental or Physical Handicap is prohibited by the Federal Fair Housing Act. In general a landlord must have a good and legal reason for refusing to rent a vacancy to an otherwise qualified tenant applicant. For example, a landlord could reject a tenant who has bad credit, inadequate income or because they wanted to share a two-bedroom apartment with five other people, two large dogs and another pet in a property which does not allow for other than guide dogs. Of course, there are some exceptions to the Fair Housing Law. If you have a question to clarify your specific situation please call the Firm.