The “Mrs. Murphy” exemption to the Fair Housing Act (FHA) doesn’t apply if a real estate professional is involved in the transaction. The “Mrs. Murphy” exemption is that if a dwelling has four or fewer rental units and the owner lives in one of them, the home is exempt from the FHA. “Mrs. Murphy” is a hypothetical elderly widow who has converted a portion of her home into a rental apartment to supplement her limited income. The exemption does not apply to advertising or to discrimination on the of race. Other state regulations regarding discrimination and tenant screening regulations still apply. So, even if it’s possible there is an exemption, best bet is to avoid even the appearance of discrimination in all cases.
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