The world of real estate can get pretty bizarre at times… Read on about the weirdest Real Estate Laws in the United States today!
Laws are made to improve people’s lives and ensure better co-existence in society. That’s their essential purpose.
You can’t really imagine a moral society existing without laws, can you?
Because until and unless there’s some arm-twisting, well, let’s say it…
Who’s going to act right, right?
So, laws are important for social harmony.
But in ensuring harmony, lawmaking can go overboard and get pretty weird (and ridiculous) too.
Some of these ridiculous laws don’t even pass the commonsense litmus test but they are there… And for a reason!
Do you want to take a ride through some of the weirdest laws in the US real estate industry?
Then buckle up!
Let’s go state by state…
Law: No more than five females can live together in the same house
That’s right, that’s the law.
If you’re living in Arkansas bear in mind that you can’t cohabit with five other women under the same roof, in the same house.
As weird as it may sound, there’s an old reason behind this law.
Years ago, many states in the US were trying to curb the brothels and prostitution business around the country…
This law was supposed to help the government crackdown on the brothels since they would have a large number of women living together.
Strange, isn’t it?
2) Rhode Island:
Law: No residential fence over 6 ft.
This may sound ridiculous – and may even worry you if you hate your neighbor and were planning on building a to cut them out…
Well, you can’t do that in Rhode Island!
Because a wall taller than 6 feet might obstruct your neighbor’s view (and that’s pretty understandable, no?)
Imagine a household hated by both the neighbors on each side and they both erected a wall squeezing the mutually hated neighbor in between.
That would be unfair to them and lower the value of their home, wouldn’t it?
3) Waldron, Washington:
Law: No more than two toilets per house
That law came on the books because the public wanted it that way.
See… Waldron is a small island between Canada and Washington State and it has a tiny population.
People thought it would be good to have only two bathrooms per house so as to maintain the low population…
Because very few families will move to a place (and buy a house) where they can’t have more than two bathrooms in their house.
That was the logic, anyway.
Law: Squatters can legally own their occupied property
‘What did I just read?’ You thought that, didn’t you?
As it seems, the law is obviously strange and can provide the habitual squatters with an open opportunity to occupy any abandoned property and within years become its legal owner…
But that’s not so easy, you see.
The squatter can only claim the ownership if they’ve lived there for five years and acted as the real owners would.
Meaning, they paid the taxes, HOA dues, and took care of all the other home maintenance as the original owner would.
But that should ring an alarm bell for you If you’ve got a house in California lying vacant…
You’d be better off renting it out before you find yourself filing for the repossession of your property – now in the hands of some squatter!
Law: Any improvements or accessories shown to buyers become their property after the sale
Any and all objects — including shelving, family photos hanging on the wall, the outdoor BBQ, the flower pots you put on the windowsill, fake fire pit logs, and above-ground pools — are fair game.
If you’re selling real estate in Texas, you’d better get your pen ready. You’ve got a lot of excluding to do in the contract…
Because it’s not fun to have your priceless wall art or heirloom curtain rods taken from you in a silly lawsuit because you thought they’d add a little flair to your open house.
6) Ridgeland, Mississippi:
Law: No burglar bars outside your windows
Yeah, that’s the way it is in Ridgeland…
You’re not allowed to put burglar bars outside your home windows.
The act was passed in 1996 and one of the main reasons was that having burglar bars on the windows stripped houses of their beauty.
Which sounds reasonable, right?
And with the high-end security systems of the modern world, who still uses burglar bars now, anyway?
7) New York, New Jersey, New Mexico, the list goes on…
Law: No DIY on a Sunday
If you want to live in any of the above-mentioned states, know that you won’t be allowed to do any Do-it-Yourself painting, hammering, drilling, or mowing on a Sunday (especially the morning).
Because all the DIYing causes noise and disturbance to the neighbors enjoying their quiet Sunday.
(Ok, drilling and mowing we understand… but painting??)
So, if you’re a DIY person in NY, NJ, or New Mexico you’d need to act fast on Saturday to complete any home maintenance jobs.
*There are other US states with similar laws, so be aware of what the law holds for your state!
Beware of the Crazy Laws In Your State!
Even if you’re not from one of the above states, keep in mind that your particular state might have such odd laws too.
Before you move your family to any state – check with an expert for any such laws.
Because you’d SURELY not want to get into a legal battle just for ‘having a nap on an upholstered sofa on your porch.’
Yeah, that’s against the law somewhere in the United States, too.
Yeah, that’s Colorado, for sure! (Boulder, Colorado to be exact)
But when you do make the choice of where you want to settle down, make your home search easy and do it all online with the help of AQRE Home.
View our Properties for sale or rent right now in your area, and reach out to our team day or night at +1 (844) 424-AQRE (2773) or firstname.lastname@example.org to answer any of your home buying, selling, or renting questions.
We can’t wait to help you find your dream home (or dream home buyer!).