LGBT friendly real estate
People often ask me what I like most about my job. They jump right in with “Is it that every day is different?” Actually no, you might be surprised to learn that my days are rather predictable in many ways. Yes, I have lots of variation in the amount and type of client interaction, the array of properties I view is mind-boggling and the deals themselves can fall anywhere on the continuum of complex and high maintenance to quick and utterly boring! But I start everyday the same, I have a pretty strict morning routine, use the same team of awesome real estate service providers to do the same jobs they are best at, and every week has a similar, consistent flow toward my goals, and yours.
Then the highlight must surely be that I like working for myself, right? True. I do love working for myself. I’m self motivated, highly organized and value my quiet, comfortable, clean home office… I’m not going to lie to you. But it’s still not the best part of my job.
The best part is the PEOPLE. Dang, I meet the best people in my job! Most of whom become friends for life… Which is the real bonus and not to be taken for granted, because I know not everyone’s job comes with this perk.
This year alone I can say that I have worked with, and am now friends with; newlyweds, recent immigrants, those going through divorce, those grieving the recent loss of a loved one, relocatees to Colorado, my tenants, people of Mormon/Christian/Mennonite faiths, investors with and without a 1031 (tax deferred) exchange, first time home buyers, repeat clients, and several more delightful souls from my gay and lesbian referral network!
Phew… That’s a lot of diversity in age, sexual orientation, familial status, ethnicity and religion/spiritual belief. And THAT is what I love about my job!
- It’s never dull.
- I learn something from every transaction and every person.
- This year has caused me to examine the person I was and am. It has made me a better person.
- I’m challenged to explore new information, find better solutions, understand personalities unlike my own.
- Like every year since I started in 2005, this year has given me pause to tweak my goals, redirect my journey, enjoy the ride.
One of the ways I can add value, is by practicing LGBT friendly real estate
I like to think I make a meaningful impact in my community.
Fortunately I live in a place where broader social acceptance and increased legal protections have been empowering for my LGBT friends and clients. However, there remains work to be done. Bias is reality for many people, still. In June 2013, HUD released the results of a survey which found that same sex couples, even in states with legislative protections in place, were less likely to receive favorable responses to rental housing email inquiries, than heterosexual couples. That is not a LGBT friendly real estate practice!
While the federal Fair Housing Act doesn’t include sexual orientation as a protected class – Colorado does, along with creed, marital status and ancestry. The National Association of Realtor’s Code of Ethics also prohibits Realtor’s from discriminating based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
*Colorado has provided limited recognition of same-sex unions in the form of designated beneficiary agreements (hospital and jail visitation rights, control of funeral arrangements, the right to death benefits and the recognition that the surviving partner is next of kin) since July 1, 2009, and as civil unions since May 1, 2013. Same-sex marriage was legalized on October 7, 2014. In real estate, this matters. It means the death of one member of the couple doesn’t trigger federal estate taxes for the surviving member – which is a big deal if it’s YOU!
What am I doing to help stomp out discrimination and to work hard for LGBT community members?
I’m the newest member of the National Association of Gay and Lesbian Real Estate Professionals (NAGLREP). Send your friends and family members to this site to find gay friendly Realtors and real estate service providers, nationwide. Feel free to check out my profile!
I am a member of the National Association of Gay and Lesbian Real Estate Professionals (NAGLREP) and am proud of my commitment to providing LGBT friendly real estate services to clients and friends in Colorado!