55 community designation and what to do????

Asked by Bill Eckler, Venice, FL Tue May 13, 2008

Since we are moving away from being able to share community lifestyle by using this term, does anyone have an idea of how we can portray an accurate immage to buyers without becoming entangled with threats of descrimination?

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Viviana Katz, Agent, Altamonte Springs, FL
Tue May 13, 2008
It's awful that we are asked by buyers for this specific "amenity" but can't pull up listings without researching the demographics ~ it makes no sense to me that we aren't allowed to use "55+" or "adult" in our MLS listings here in Florida when the development market is allowed to build & market these places themselves. I usually fall back on "deed restricted" or "association approval required" in the listing as a clue for the buyers' agents.
1 vote
Ute Ferdig, Agent, Auburn, CA
Tue May 13, 2008
Hi Bill. In our MLS, we designate it as retirement community and I would think that if the MLS can have a category called "retirement community," then that should pass muster under fair housing regulation. I would check with your local board for guidance regarding that issue. I personally thinks some of the anti-discrimation rules are a little bit overboard and protecting the hypersensitive. I am definitely not in favor of discrimination, but calling a room a "family room" or a neighborhood "child friendly" is not indicative of discrimination in my humble opinion, just like holding the door open for a lady is not sexual harassment.
1 vote
Susan Barras…, , Wilmington, MA
Tue May 13, 2008
At a recent class on Fair Housing we were told to use the term "Older person's housing". That ought to sell a lot of units! How about "Mature community" or "Developed development" or "The speed limit". Then we can let the condo association spell out the age requirements.
1 vote
Barry Shapiro, Agent, Camarillo, CA
Wed Jan 27, 2010
Hi Bill,

I wonder if "Baby Boomer and Beyond" would be acceptable? No one seems to frown upon being referred to as a senior in Southern California, since they can take advantage of advertised "senior discounts" ...
For those of us that market to and work with 55+ senior clientele, the SRES designation is a vital element to our success. In Ventura County, we receive a substantial number of inquiries from out-of-area home buyers looking to downsize and particularly take advantage of our excellent climate. Leisure Village in Camarillo California offers an ideal combination of housing choices, activities and lifestyle in a gated community of 2136 single-level condos and homes. I have incorporated the SRES info in my "Valuable Senior Links" page: http://findleisurevillagehomes.com/valuable-links.asp and have proudly display the SRES graphic link on the home page of our Leisure Village Camarillo CA website. Baby Boomers Unite!
0 votes
Pam Winterba…, Agent, Danville, VA
Tue May 13, 2008

The SRES designation provide information on how to handle this without violating the HUD laws and still make it attractive to prospective buyers. Personally I like the term "seasoned buyers or sellers".
0 votes
Charles Rori…, Agent, Grants Pass, OR
Tue May 13, 2008
I would check with the fair housing in your area, but in Oregon, so long as certain percentages (population) are kept, terms such as "Senior Housing" and "55 community" are not considered descriminatory. Now we can not specifically say "adults only" or orthe phrases along those lines...
0 votes
Heidi Everett, Agent, Oklahoma City, OK
Tue May 13, 2008
If you are designated with Century 21 there is a certification program called mature moves tht teaches about the mature market and the special need the sellers and buyers in that demographic and the terms tht re favorable to fair housing law and also sensitive the the community itself.
0 votes
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