The danger of Rent-to-Own: “If you’re doubling your money off of people who are scraping by and you’re taking advantage of their vulnerability to enrich yourself, that is being predatory,” said Beryl Satter, the author of the 2009 book “Family Properties,” which chronicled the exploitation of black homeowners in Chicago. Nearly half of Vision’s homes were bought from Fannie Mae, the government-backed mortgage firm, according to RealtyTrac. A number of tenants and former tenants interviewed said they had hoped to buy homes from Vision either by ultimately getting a mortgage or saving cash to buy a home outright.
Daniel Beekman on Seattle’s new rental housing law: And Shanna Smith, president of the National Fair Housing Alliance, said the policy means Seattle is taking a leadership role. “We’ve been asking people to address this issue for years,” but landlords always push back, said Smith. She added, “We know landlords skip people all the time, and often the people they skip are people of color, people with vouchers and families with children.” Not everyone is happy about the policy, however.