Discrimination | Florida | LGBT Rights | News

Florida Condo Association Only Wants Single Or 'Husband And Wife' Homebuyers

Casa di Amici
A condo association in Venice, Florida has decided to outright ban any homebuyers who are "living in sin". That is: 

"The sale, lease, or transfer of a Condominium Unit may be made only to an individual, to a husband and wife jointly, to the trustee or trustees of a trust, the beneficiaries of which are limited to an individual, a husband and wife, or the lineal descendants of a the husband and wife, or either of them, or to a partnership organized for the purpose of holding title to a Condominium Unit and the partners of which are an individual or husband and wife."

That's a statement from the "comic-sans-riddled" official website of Casa Di Amici, the association that adopted the controversial policy as of July 31, 2013. Perhaps even more troubling is the fact that, according to 10 News Tampa Bay, the policy is completely legal under Florida Law.

Casa di Amici SocialJulia Nowak, an openly-gay realtor who rents a condo in the complex to her elderly parents, discovered the discriminatory policy after receiving a document from Casa Di Amici. "I could not believe what I was reading," she said, "it basically says you have to be either a single person or a husband and wife to purchase a unit here...I hope there is public outrage [that] people will discriminate in this day and age."

It is worth noting that this policy doesn't just discriminate against same-sex couples. Opposite-sex couples that aren't recognized as "traditionally married" are barred as well. 10 News reports that:

"The City of Venice has a domestic partnership ordinance that might have allowed Nowak to fight the new policy, but the condos with a Venice mailing address are actually in unincorporated Sarasota County, which doesn't have a human rights ordinance...the truth is unless the state of Florida passes a human rights ordinance or domestic partners live in an area with that type of ordinance, what they call discrimination is perfectly legal."

Florida is unfortunately one of many states in the U.S. that bans marriage equality as well as refusing to recognize any other sort of same-sex partnership, and has no laws in place to protect LGBT people from discrimination in housing, employment, or education. 

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  1. This violates Federal housing law.

    Posted by: Wisebear | Aug 18, 2013 3:39:15 PM

  2. Judging solely from the picture, these people deserve each other.

    Posted by: Bart | Aug 18, 2013 3:46:35 PM

  3. Do they realize that by limiting the types of future buyers they are lowering their property values? Sure, some people might be attracted to this situation but even those people need to think about resale.

    Posted by: Craig | Aug 18, 2013 3:59:17 PM

  4. ...and...cue the attorneys, splc, aclu, and cable news outlets.

    my money says the hoa loses this fight.

    Posted by: northalabama | Aug 18, 2013 4:04:23 PM

  5. Now what going to stop me from buying a unit then moving in with my lover? Once I buy the unit there is not a whole lot they can do about it. They can't "undo" a sale.

    Posted by: Macmantoo | Aug 18, 2013 4:15:23 PM

  6. Craig is right. It is a lousy housing market in Venice. Prices are a fraction of what they were before the bubble burst. They are going to make it harder to sell than ever before. Still, glad they advertise their bigotry. It is good to know what kind of neighbors there are.

    Posted by: candideinnc | Aug 18, 2013 4:16:50 PM

  7. Ugh. Who would live in that cesspool anyway?

    Posted by: Chuck | Aug 18, 2013 4:37:55 PM

  8. And when one of the owners is gets an offer from a gay couple and that offer is the highest by far of the offers received and they're forced to sell low, does this board really think that they're not going to get sued by the owner for the diminishment of the value of his property?

    Posted by: TomTallis | Aug 18, 2013 4:45:47 PM

  9. Ok the other issues aside... this is another example of how out of control HOAs and other property groups have become.

    The problem with most of these issues is that all the goobly gook is in the deeds so any changes require everyone to go to personal expense of having deeds changes.

    My neighborhood overwhelmingly wants our HMO disbanded but its like $5K or something everyone would have to spend.

    Since its so hard to change ore get rid of these things become self perputuating.

    Most any issues that would "reduce" property values or be a detriment the neighborhood is usually already covered by city ordinences and doesn't need a busy body or covenants in deeds micromanaging every house in a subdivision.

    So anyway, 20 years from now when there is gay marriage in Florida, this will still be going on because no one is ever going to jump thru all the hoops it takes to change these deeds

    Posted by: Homo Genius | Aug 18, 2013 5:10:29 PM

  10. What's the difference between this and Condominiums that don't allow children or pets or smokers or those condos which exclude people under 55 or some other age criteria?

    Posted by: andrew | Aug 18, 2013 5:31:31 PM

  11. Another bit of proof that Florida is one of the SHITTIEST states in the union.

    Posted by: Princely | Aug 18, 2013 6:24:05 PM

  12. Some wealthy, single (gay) individuals should buy a dozen units and let some (straight) married biker gang couples live in them.

    Posted by: Fox | Aug 18, 2013 6:37:48 PM

  13. I don't know, if people want to live in that hood under those rules, it should be their right. Don't tell me I can't live somewhere that kids are banned, I HATE kids and don't want to have to deal with the little brats. Same goes for really old people. Disgusting. And the mexicans that play loud music all night. Gross. And ugly gay people, I only want to live near really hot gays.

    Posted by: RickieJones | Aug 18, 2013 7:19:59 PM

  14. Sarcasm font needed there, Rickie.

    Agree with Homo Genius, HOAs should be banned, period. It's nothing short of Nazi control B.S. and making everyone in the subdivision join in lockstep (goose-step?) to have a perfect, blond Stepford situation.

    If you KNOWINGLY move into one of these neighborhoods, you have nobody to blame but yourself for not reading the restrictions ahead of time. The mailboxes all being exactly the same should be your first clue.

    There have been idiotic lawsuits over people growing small vegetable gardens or wanting to plant a tree in these types of communities. When it gets to the point where I have to get permission from a committee to paint my house a different color or plant something nicer than what was there, forget it.

    I pay the taxes and the mortgage and I'm not about to let someone else tell me how to live.

    And Florida is a burnt out shell of nasty anyway, they can keep it.

    Posted by: johnny | Aug 18, 2013 7:43:51 PM

  15. And you kids get the hell off my lawn!


    Posted by: johnny | Aug 18, 2013 7:44:12 PM

  16. Is the policy legal? Same sex adoption in Florida was legal until a lawsuit a few years ago (In re Gill). The Florida appeals court found that a law stopping gay couples from adopting violated equal protection. Wouldn't the exact same logic apply to gay couples wanting to buy a house?

    Posted by: Larry | Aug 18, 2013 7:56:21 PM

  17. The condo docs can say anything they like; that doesn't mean it's enforceable. Condo associations can barely exercise approval on renters and have no power whatsoever to limit who may purchase. The same is not true of a cooperative.

    Posted by: Hagatha | Aug 18, 2013 8:03:34 PM

  18. I don't see why this should be a problem. It really is a "traditionalist vs. modernist" battle rather than a "LGBT vs. homophobes" battle. But once gay marriage becomes legal in Florida then gays couples who are legally wed must be allowed in. Otherwise we have an illegal case of discrimination. I don't really know what homophobes are going to do when SSM is legal across the whole land. They will have to start setting up businesses/establishments that are only meant for people of one religion - if they refuse to be gay-inclusive. The smartest move they could make would be to cultivate a healthy respect for and a good working relationship with their gay neighbors and fellow citizens in order to prepare for the time when this happens.

    Posted by: Mary | Aug 18, 2013 8:05:17 PM

  19. This is discrimination, is it not? And, how in the hell can a homeowners association be permitted to determine who is "living in sin"? I tell ya, with each and every passing day, I come to despise more and more evangelicals and other forms of christian cretinism.

    Posted by: jamal49 | Aug 18, 2013 8:16:42 PM

  20. I think they are going to have lots of litigation over this. It doesn't bother me because I would loathe having to live near the kind of people who want those kinds of restrictions. But surely these restrictions will lower the property values and make the condos unattractive as investments. Why would anyone want to limit the pool of potential buyers when it comes time to sell? Love how dumb these bigots are.

    Posted by: Jay | Aug 18, 2013 8:49:40 PM

  21. JAMAL49,u r right!

    Posted by: Goodcarver | Aug 18, 2013 9:01:05 PM

  22. Every Preliminary Title Report I see these days, and I see a lot of them (I'm a Real Estate Broker) has a blanket disclaimer stating words to the effect that there may be outdated/illegal deed recorded deed restrictions that violate Federal housing laws and to ignore them.

    Posted by: chasmader | Aug 18, 2013 9:08:24 PM

  23. Who cares if they don't want us to live there. It's so much more fun calling it "discrimination' Validates our guilt of secretly feeling worthless.

    Posted by: CG | Aug 18, 2013 9:10:40 PM

  24. Russian gays look increasingly to U.S. for asylum http://on.wsj.com/1acWdpY via @WSJ

    Posted by: GB | Aug 18, 2013 9:15:14 PM

  25. What is the difference between this Condominiums discriminatory rules and all those Condominium Associations that don't allow children or pets or smokers of people under 55 or some other discriminatory rule?

    Posted by: andrew | Aug 18, 2013 9:33:11 PM

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