Texas REALTOR® Magazine Minute – April 2018
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Texas REALTOR® Magazine Minute – April 2018

It’s the 50th anniversary of the Fair Housing Act becoming law. and that’s something to celebrate. But people started working on Fair Housing long before 1968. And fair housing efforts didn’t stop in 1968 either. For example, the US Department of Housing and Urban Development recently advised landlords that refusing to rent to anyone because they have a criminal record could be discrimination. Also, local laws enacted long after 1968 have added to the protections of the Fair Housing Act. San Antonio, for example, prohibits discrimination based on veteran status, sexual orientation, and gender identity. And don’t forget the REALTOR® Code of Ethics. In 2011, the code banned discrimination based on sexual orientation. And in 2014, the code prohibited based on gender identity. Read more about how fair housing affects your business, and download a PDF about fair housing to share with buyers, sellers, and renters at texasrealestate.com/magazine.

2 thoughts on “Texas REALTOR® Magazine Minute – April 2018

  1. Unfortunately Fair Housing law is still needed and Kerrville is a perfect example. Kerrville has ignored the State's definition of Boarding Home in its Ord. 2013-06 by omitting the qualifying terms the State has in Health and Safety Code 260.001(2)(B), trying to falsely hide behind home rule authority, and expanding Kerrville's definition to include those the family definition back to anyone, including those living in recovery in order to stay Sober, contrary to the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling in the City of Edmonds v Oxford House, 115 S. Ct. 1776. ""The defining provision at issue describes who may compose a family unit; it does not prescribe "the maximum number of occupants" a dwelling unit may house. We hold 3607(b)(1) does not exempt prescriptions of the family-defining kind, i.e., provisions designed to foster the family character of a neighborhood. Instead 3607(b)(1)'s absolute exemption removes from the FHA's scope only total occupancy limits, i.e., numerical ceilings that serve to prevent overcrowding in living quarters. " The point Kerrville violates is Fair Housing Law not allowing "equal opportunity to use and enjoy a dwelling," Kerrville does not demand the same of a family with 10 kids, two parents and two grandparents all living in the same house.
    Furthermore, the Texas Senate Republicans have taken a communist stance against those in recovery in the last session. In 1921 the Texas Supreme Court declared zoning unconstitutional, it was not until 1934 that the Texas Supreme Court changed it's opinion because of the U.S. Dept. of Commerce Agency regulation of 1926. The 1934 Tex. Sup. Ct made less than honorable ruling made libelous claims about everyone who ever lived in an apartment, claiming that government not only had the right to protect the health and safety of the public, but to strip land owners of their rights so government, "communism" could tell us what we could do, and not do, with our property, even if it did not threaten the health and safety of our neighbors! Government took over the planning of our property rights so they could categorize what we could and could not do. For instance, I can have a home occupation, have a number of maids, a cook, a butler and yard people take care of of my house, but somehow a secretary for my home occupation is not allowed, even though they would certainly not be as dangerous as cook. Likewise, Texas Government, including San Antonio management, has helped Short Term Rentals escape the demand of sprinkler systems with Texas Occupation Code 1301.551(i), even though the International Code Council says all non owner occupied Short Term Rentals should have sprinkler systems, but San Antonio demands sprinkler systems in Boarding Homes, regulating many out of existence, harming the ever increasing elderly and disabled population from housing options. Let me put it another way, in San Antonio I can fill a Short Term Rental with people with disabilities for a more hazardous short term occupancy, but those same people living in a less hazardous long term occupancy of a boarding home require a sprinkler system.
    It is time that the Texas and/or U.S. Supreme Court declare Euclid Zoning classifications just as unconstitutional has it found Sign classifications unconstitutional in 2015. We now have the ability to define uses by recorded industry traffic numbers, sounds and odors by electronic means, and safety hazards by distance. We still have the ability to make Home Owner's Associations through contract, for those who like putting there nose into their neighbors business, without the government changing the rules ex-post facto, or on the other hand, the government hamstringing property owners by changing the traffic patterns to a point a single family residence must suffer a decline in value because traffic patterns have changed so it has 20,000 cars a day go by it, without the ability to change the occupancy because of the communism of the "not in my back yard" zoning mentality. IF anyone would like to share in this battle, my name is Chris 210-240-7500.

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