Steering in real estate occurs when a real estate agent influences or decides not to show a homebuyer certain homes in communities based on their race, which limits the buyer’s choices in homes. Steering (Real Estate) is illegal under the Fair Housing Act. Your Real Estate Agent is required to offer equal service to all homebuyers, no matter what their race, religion, color, disability, national origin, sex, or familial status maybe.
Here’s a situation I’ll use as an example of steering in real estate. Let’s say, you are looking to purchase a home in a specific area. You’re qualified with the bank on getting financing and it’s in an area you’re wanting to live. You as the homebuyer have every right to view or purchase a home deem fit for both your financial and personal needs. If your Real Estate Agent gives you reasons not to live in an area with answers such as, “oh, there are a lot of ‘specific’ people who live in this area.We should probably look around this area instead” is an example of steering. Basically, if an agent isn’t giving equal professional service to their clients, and if they’re making assumptions about what buyers of different races want without explicit direction from those buyers, then they’re in danger of steering. Steering in Real Estate is illegal.
So Let’s talk about why this is illegal.
Why is steering illegal?
The Fair Housing Act of 1968 banned discrimination concerning the sale, rental and financing of housing based on race, religion, national origin, sex, handicap and family status, which includes real estate steering. Today, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) enforces the Fair Housing act for renters, home buyers and sellers, and people getting mortgages.
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