Realtors ® and HUD
Embark on New Fair Housing Partnership
December 5, 1996, The National Association of Realtors (NAR) and the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development signed a new Fair Housing Partnership Agreement. "Realtors have led the housing industry in promoting fair housing. We are proud to enter into this historic partnership with HUD," announced Russell K. Booth, NAR President. The NAR Board of Directors approved the agreement on November 18, at the Realtor â convention in San Francisco.
The Fair Housing Partnership sets up, on a national level, a model for discussion, planning and action that can be replicated at the community level. The agreement emphasizes the development of collaborative strategies and measurable actions to address identified fair housing issues.
The agreement outlines a program to address five Partnership goals for 1997 informing the public about fair housing, providing training and resource materials for real estate professionals, developing fair housing best practices, working closely with other industry and community-based organizations, and encouraging development of local fair housing partnerships.
The Fair Housing Partnership Agreement replaces the 21 year-old Voluntary Affirmative Marketing Agreement (VAMA) and emphasizes problem solving instead of rigid compliance procedures. "The VAMA has been an effective tool in educating Realtors â about their fair housing responsibilities," said Max Ryujin, 1996 Chair of the NAR Equal Opportunity Committee, "and it elevated the importance of fair housing across the nation. It is time to recognize the VAMA's success and move beyond our Association to our broader communities."
Elizabeth Julian, HUD Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity praised the Realtors' â efforts and noted, "We are pleased to be taking this next step with NAR. We expect that this agreement will help form the foundation for the National Partners in Home ownership as they work to implement the Opening Markets component of the National Home ownership Strategy.