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Jul 06, 2020

‘Master’ no longer used to describe bathrooms and bedrooms by Houston real estate group

These bedrooms and bathrooms are nobody’s master.

Earlier this month, the Houston Association of Realtors dropped the word “master” for specification, opting for “primary” as a more inclusive descriptor.

“The Multiple Listing Service advisory group regularly reviews the terms and fields used in the MLS to make sure they are consistent with the current market environment,” read an association statement. “The updates to primary bedroom and primary bath were among nine requests for review that were submitted by members and considered at the most recent meetings.”

The adjustment came after several members of the organization called for a review of the word’s use, according to Houston TV station KPRC.

Amid racial-equality and police-overhaul demonstrations, “master” has become unpopular due to its slavery connotation.

But the real estate group will allow members to continue the “master” adjective in photo descriptions and marketing materials.

“You may still use the term ‘master bedroom’ or ‘master bath’ as you feel appropriate in your marketing materials and in the public remarks, agent remarks and photo descriptions,” reads the updated MLS guidelines.

Ladonna Park, president of the Houston Black Real Estate Association, welcomed the change.

“I think it’s more a sign of the times,” explained Park, who is also a Houston Association of Realtors member. “It’s a sign that we are in the midst of change — what structural things can we do to make a difference?”

Dietrich von Biedenfeld, a business professor at the University of Houston, noted that the historic master/slave plantation dynamic creates an expression of minority exclusion.

“Some of these changes are simply good-faith exercises to demonstrate awareness of historic improprieties or inequities,” according to station KTRK.

The Court of Master Sommeliers, which grants wine stewards the distinguished master sommelier title following passing the final exam, recently announced it would cease using “master” before a sommelier’s last name, according to CNN.

Published by NY Daily News

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