Now Realtors are civil rights activists

What to do when Archie Bunker gets his hands on neighborhood demographics data

Learn the New Luxury Playbook at Luxury Connect | October 18-19 at the Beverly Hills Hotel

Prior to the Zillow-Trulia distraction palooza, there was a discussion about Suburban Jungle Realty Group’s model of helping urban dwellers find a home in the New York suburbs. The firm uses census and other demographic-driven data to help homebuyers screen communities to find the right one for them. From my vantage as a broker active in the same market footprint, it is not a novel approach; it is a new twist on an old idea seldom discussed in the open. It should be. In the nomenclature of polite company, the “right community” is too often code for consumers with a whispered agenda. The subtext of the questions about locales often politely hovers around urban professionals wanting homogeneous, exclusive, ethnically specific ("safe," etc.) suburbs with certain social benchmarks that have nothing to do with the actual housing stock we sell. Do we promote our communities? You bet, but I would quickly add that that lifestyle and quality of life have zero to do with the pr...