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A History of Fair Housing

Baldwin REALTORS® is a local branch of the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR): the professional organization that represents real estate agents and brokers across the United States. For over a century, NAR has been a leader in shaping the real estate industry and advocating for policies that benefit both REALTORS® and their clients. One of the most important policy areas for NAR has been fair housing.


Fair housing refers to the principle that everyone should have equal access to housing, regardless of their race, color, national origin, religion, sex, familial status, or disability. In the United States, fair housing has a complicated history, with many laws and policies designed to prevent discrimination in housing.


Fair Housing Act of 1968

The Fair Housing Act of 1968 is one of the most significant pieces of legislation in this area. This law made it illegal to discriminate against someone in the sale, rental, or financing of a home on the basis of their race, color, national origin, religion, sex, familial status, or disability. The law was a major victory for civil rights and helped to open up housing opportunities for millions of Americans.


But the fight for fair housing didn't end with the passage of the Fair Housing Act. There have been many challenges and setbacks over the years, and NAR has played a critical role in many of these battles.


Continued Progress

In the 1970s, NAR was at the forefront of efforts to fight discriminatory lending practices that made it difficult for minorities to obtain mortgages. The organization worked with Congress and other groups to pass the Community Reinvestment Act of 1977, which required banks to meet the credit needs of all segments of their communities, including low- and moderate-income neighborhoods.


In the 1980s, NAR was instrumental in the passage of the Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988, which expanded the protections of the Fair Housing Act to include people with disabilities and families with children.


Recent Strides

More recently, the NAR has been working to address issues related to implicit bias in the real estate industry. The organization has developed training programs and resources for agents and brokers to help them recognize and combat bias in their interactions with clients.

In addition to these policy and advocacy efforts, the NAR has also been a leader in promoting diversity and inclusion within the real estate industry. The organization has established a diversity committee to ensure that the perspectives of all members are represented in its decision-making processes, and it has developed a range of resources to help members better serve diverse communities.


Overall, NAR has played a critical role in the fight for fair housing over the past century. While there is still much work to be done, the organization's advocacy and policy efforts have helped to create a more just and equitable real estate industry for all Americans. That's why working with a REALTOR®, an agent who has made the choice to join the National Association of REALTORS® through a local branch and abide by their Code of Ethics, means more.


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