When it comes to fair housing, California has stringent laws against discrimination. This means it’s very important for landlords to be careful of their language in any official communication, including websites. In fact, because many rental searches begin online, it’s doubly important for landlords to ensure their language can’t be construed as discriminatory. It’s a good idea to put up a nondiscrimination statement on all your written materials.
For example, if your Santa Cruz property happens to be near a nice park with a playground, it’s a great idea to mention that fact in online and paper listings. You don’t want to say your property is “ideal for families”. This may give the impression that you favor families or discriminate against single people. Keep in mind that families with children are a protected class under federal law. If your property is close to downtown nightlife, don’t say it’s “perfect for singles or young couples”. This may sound like you are unfavorable toward families with children.
While it’s important to keep your listings updated, sometimes you might forget. For this reason, don’t be specific about exactly how many apartments you have open. This may open you up to a discrimination complaint if you aren’t diligent about changing your listings. A family that calls several times about an apartment you rented a few months ago might think you just don’t want them and file a complaint.
Keeping on the right side of California’s anti-discrimination laws is a challenge. A Santa Cruz property management company knows these laws. Blue Sky has been in the rental business for years. We’re committed to fair housing and to making sure our landlords are in compliance with the laws.