Discriminatory restrictive covenants refer to contractual agreements that prohibit the purchase, lease, or occupancy of property by individuals against whom discrimination is prohibited. These covenants, which single out individuals based on factors such as race, ethnicity, and religion, were recorded when a lot was created, a subdivision was approved, or when a home was built and have left a legacy of housing discrimination.
Fortunately, discriminatory restrictive covenants are not valid, nor enforceable. In 1948 the United States Supreme Court ruled that racially restrictive covenants cannot be enforced. In 1968, the federal Fair Housing Act banned covenants discriminating on the basis of race, color, religion, or national origin.
Arizona law is also clear in this regard, repudiating the legality and enforceability of discriminatory restrictive covenants. Specifically, Arizona law, A.R.S. § 32-2107.01(A), states:
The [state real estate] commissioner shall execute and record in the office of the county recorder in each county in this state a document that disclaims the validity and enforceability of certain restrictions and covenants. The document shall contain a disclaimer in substantially the following form: It is the law of this state that any covenants or restrictions that are based on race, religion, color, disability status or national origin are invalid and unenforceable. If the invalid covenant or restriction is contained in a document that is recorded in this county, it is hereby declared void.
Under Arizona Department of Real Estate Commissioner Louis Dettorre, the required document has been recorded in all 15 counties within the State of Arizona. Below you will find the recorded documents from each county in the state of Arizona that effectively voids discriminatory restrictive covenants in deeds. These restrictive covenants are found by many buyers when researching the restrictions and limitations as to who can live at the property and how it can be utilized. Prior to this webpage, it could prove difficult to find the document that was recorded pursuant to Arizona law that voids discriminatory deed restrictions within that particular county.
If your buyer questions you about discriminatory deed restrictions, please direct them to this webpage that explains how the United States Supreme Court, Federal Fair Housing Act, and Arizona law have addressed and struck down discriminatory provisions within deeds.