Master Bedroom or Primary Bedroom- what is fair?

September 10, 2020 at 1:47 pm Leave a comment

Stunning Primary Bedroom!

During a recent real estate class, an examination of fair housing laws brought discussion of how crucially important these protections are for home sellers, buyers, landlords and renters.
The Fair Housing Act of 1968, expanding on previous U.S. acts, prohibits discrimination concerning the sale, rental and financing of housing based on race, religion, national origin, sex, handicap and family status, as a follow-up to the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
The act helps ensure these factors are not considered in transactions involving people seeking a place to live. A good REALTOR® will help clients selling a home to comply with all laws preventing housing discrimination, and also help ensure clients searching for a new home are not discriminated against. 
As stated on the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) website, “fair housing is more than a list of dos and don’ts, rights and penalties, and mandatory continuing education. 
“As stewards of the right to own, use and transfer private property, fair housing protects our livelihood and business as REALTORS® and depends on a free, open market that embraces equal opportunity. REALTORS® recognize the significance of the Fair Housing Act and reconfirm their commitment to upholding fair housing law as well as their commitment to offering equal professional service to all in their search for real property,” the NAR website says.
Earlier this summer, the level of dedication to this equal service commitment is being shown by some real estate organizations recognizing sensitivity to potentially offensive language that even a few years ago might not have raised any concerns.
As reported in Newsweek magazine in June, the Houston Association of REALTORS® “decided to replace all descriptions using the terms ‘master bedroom’ and ‘master bathroom’ with ‘primary bedroom’ and ‘primary bathroom’ earlier this month on its Multiple Listing Service (MLS). The change came after several members of the association asked for the terminology to be reviewed.”

“The MLS Advisory Group regularly reviews the terms and fields used in the MLS to make sure they are consistent with the current market environment,” the HAR said in a statement sent to its members. “It was not a new suggestion to review the terminology. The overarching message was that some members were concerned about how the terms might be perceived by some other agents and consumers. The consensus was that ‘primary’ describes the rooms equally as well as ‘master’ while avoiding any possible misperceptions.”

Newsweek reported Tiffany Curry, an African-American real estate broker and former board member in the National Association of Realtors (NAR), said she supported the change because of the negative connotation from the term “master.”

“‘Master’ represents a stigma and place in time that we need to move forward from. As a progressive, diverse city, Houston should be reflective of its citizenship,” Curry was quoted as saying.

Developments like this demonstrate the care professional REALTORS® take when marketing properties and assisting their clients.

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