If I owned a dress shop and a tiny woman walked in, I'd probably take her straight to the petite aisle. If I ran a restaurant and a gentleman entered with a lit cigarette dangling from his mouth, I would immediately offer him a table in the smoking section. Unfortunately, such common-sense ideas don't always apply to the real estate business. When a restaurateur suggests a chain-smoking customer might feel most comfortable in the smoking section, it's considered good customer service. But when a real estate agent suggests a home buyer might be more comfortable in one particular neighborhood than another, it's illegal steering–a federal crime that can result in huge fines, possible loss of the agent's sales license and even a prison term. I've been thinking about anti-steering laws ...
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