Fair housing advocates have announced a settlement agreement to resolve a lawsuit against realtor Redfin that will expand housing options for consumers in communities of color in many major cities.
Under the agreement, Seattle-based Redfin will change its minimum housing price policy, change other practices and pay $4 million to settle the lawsuit brought against it by the National Fair Housing Alliance and nine other organizations. fair housing in 2020.
The changes will increase access to Redfin’s real estate services across the country and help counter the redlining and residential segregation that the NFHA and other plaintiffs have alleged Redfin’s policies have perpetuated. Redlining is a now illegal practice in which banks would refuse to give someone home loans because they live in an area considered to be of low financial risk.
“Our goal was to ensure that all neighborhoods were treated fairly and had access to the full range of services provided by any real estate company,” said Lisa Rice, president and CEO of NFHA. “The steps Redfin has agreed to take are a positive step towards eliminating some of the country’s most harmful practices, such as redlining and valuation bias.”
The lawsuit alleged that Redfin’s minimum home price policy violated the Fair Housing Act by discriminating between sellers and buyers of homes in communities of color. The NFHA and the other plaintiffs alleged that policies that limit or deny services for homes priced below certain values can perpetuate racial segregation and contribute to the racial wealth gap.