Q: I just advertised my condo on Facebook Marketplace, and I have had a few inquiries. As you probably are aware, advertising on this platform enables me to click on the applicant's profile.
As a Realtor for almost 30 years, I'm more than familiar with fair housing laws, and I have successfully rented to tenants from all races and religions. My problem is that I don't know the rules regarding Facebook profiles, and other social media profiles, as well.
Am I legally obligated to agree to show the unit to someone whose profile I find offensive?
A: The same fair housing laws, along with your state's landlord tenant laws and your city's local ordinances, that you follow when renting to tenants apply to Facebook Marketplace advertising and other social media platforms.
In your case, since you're renting out your condo, you also need to comply with your condo association's rules and bylaws regarding rentals.Many landlords screen potential tenants based on their rental, credit and criminal history, which is legal.
You can choose not to show the unit or not to rent to tenants because you find their social media profile offensive, but your decision must not be based on discriminatory reasons such as their race, skin color, religion, national origin, disability, familial status, gender, sexual orientation or any other protected class.You need to make sure to evaluate all potential tenants equally and fairly.