This post is going to tread on ground that a small minority of people still don't know about and don't understand. In the metro Detroit area we have a few cities where "white flight" is very evident. Over the years the city that once has a majority white demographics has now gone to a black majority. As real estate agents we show houses in any city to anybody that wants to look at them. So today it surprised me when a person at a barbecue asked me where they can "find a black real estate agent".
They told me a story of 83 year old white Southfield condo owner. They wanted to sell the Southfield condo. The majority of the residents in the condo complex are no longer white. So they felt a black real estate agent should be the one to list it so they could sell to a black buyer.
That goes against what we as real estate agents do. We don't discriminate because of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, family status, or disability because it is illegal by federal law. If the agent is Asian and lists a Livonia house, they don't sell the house to just Asians. A Spanish speaking agent doesn't only sell homes in our Mexican Village area. Sure they may specialize in that area but they don't discriminate. They help all buyers and sell any home regardless of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, family status, or disability. They don't stop a Hindu, or a person of Arabic descent from buying it. If you are an African American agent you don't just have African American buyers. Caucasian agents will help any buyer find a home. It is illegal to do otherwise.
When we list your home we put on the MLS which feeds out to "ALL" REAL ESTATE AGENTS. The MLS feeds the listings out to all sorts of web sites on the internet. A buyer looking for a Oakland County Condos under $50,000 will call a agent and ask to see all Oakland County condos listed under $50,000. This Southfield condo willl show up on any search regardless of who is asking. That is how homes are sold. The condo or house is open for showing to any buyer that is financially qualified. It is illegal to refuse to sell a home to any person because they are a different race, and the other discrimination factors.
It is illegal for any agent to "STEER" white people to cities that are more white. It is illegal for any agent for any agent to "STEER" an Arabic person away from Westland and get them to buy only in Dearborn because Dearborn is pre-dominantly Arabic. We don't even answer racist questions. We stay away from questions on what type of people live in the neighborhood. We tell you to look up the demographics. We tell you to drive the neighborhood at different times of the day to see if you like the neighborhood.
It is OK to help somebody that wants to buy a home in an area that they feel comfortable in because there are other people like them. It's OK for us to take the buyer to the city they request. It's not our job to decide where people live. WE CAN NOT STEER PEOPLE. So the bottom line is you don't need a specific ethnicity or race of a Realtor to sell your home. You don't need a certain realtor to buy a home. So whether you are buying or selling give me a call I'll show you homes in the cities you want to look in and I will help get your home out on the internet so it is open to all buyers.
If somebody discriminates against you or tries to steer you to a certain city call the local real estate board and make a complaint. But better yet go to HUD and fill out the online complaint form. It should not be happening in this day and age.