Real Estate Articles

2021-06-01 WHAT YOU DO "NOT" SAY TO APPLICANTS | By: Jeff Taylor

by Jeffery Taylor, Mr. Landlord

A landlord with what he considers a "C" property in a "C" neighborhood recently had a prospective resident (who is currently paying Class-A rents), inquire about his properties. The landlord, who was trying to be helpful, e-mailed her photos of his house and tried to explain to her that the neighborhood of his probably is a little different from the neighborhood she lived in now. The landlord even gave her the racial mix of the neighborhood. 

Several landlords expressed caution and gave reasons why this prospective resident with an 800+ credit score would even consider moving to a class C property. However, the landlord's statement regarding providing the racial mix of the neighborhood is what sparked the biggest concern on our Q&A Forum. One other landlord warned:

"Roy, you (may have) just committed a fair housing violation of steering. You can't give racial information, (even when stating facts), or tell someone the neighborhood's not right for them because they are too good for the neighborhood, and you can't imply that someone may not fit in because there are people of other colors living there." 

And the discussion only heated up from there, including my take and follow-up link to how a landlord should respond if an applicant asks point-blank about the neighborhood's racial make-up or ethnicity.

Click here now to see the full discussion

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