What is NAR’s ACT?
The National Association of Realtors has recently announced an action plan for Realtors to proceed with the Fair Housing Act successfully. Some Realtors might be violating the Act without being fully aware of it because many of the legal activities we do as Realtors on a daily basis can inadvertently lead to discrimination.
In this review, I will discuss the definition of the Act and the action planned proposed by the NAR. Also, we will go through some of the things we can do to benefit the most from the action plan.
What is the Fair Housing Act?
The best definition of the Fair Housing Act is offered by the Department of Housing and Urban Development:
“The Fair Housing Act protects people from discrimination when they are renting or buying a home, getting a mortgage, seeking housing assistance, or engaging in other housing-related activities. Additional protections apply to federally-assisted housing.”
In other words, if you think your real estate or marketing activities have the potential to discriminate or be deemed as discriminatory, you need to consult your lawyer or follow NAR’s action plan, ACT.
The Action Plan
The action plan is referred to as ACT, which stands for accountability, culture change, and training.
As part of this action plan, the NAR has provided an online platform called Fair Haven. This platform is designed to simulate client feedback and responses, in order to improve Realtors’ awareness on the subject of fairness and discrimination in housing. The training on this platform is free for Realtors.
An Example Scenario
As part of the awareness campaign, NAR has emphasized the subject of school information. Providing school information is legal, but if used to direct potential buyers away from a neighborhood or area, it can lead to being flagged as discrimination.
An Example Solution
To avoid legal hurdles, Realtors are recommended to provide third-party objective data when it comes to things like school information. School district administrators are good examples of these objective third-party references.
Pocket listing is another example of potential legal pitfalls for Realtors. It is important for Realtors to be fully aware of legal challenges and to try to minimize their risks. If you are practicing pocket listing or you want to try that in the future, don’t miss the following article: