By Kay Wilson-Bolton
October 1, 2007
There are some obvious and legal criteria you can use to select a good tenant for your home.
Good tenants pay their rent on time, take good care of the home and give proper notice based on their contractual obligations.
Most landlords believe that you can receive a dozen applications over a period of time and select the one they like. I’m told that is discriminatory. You must pass or reject applications as they come to you.
Let’s say you receive these applications in order. One is from a single mother with 10 children, a married couple with no children and two families with three children each for a total of 10 people.
Their incomes are similar and meet the criteria, their credit scores are similar, each one received favorable recommendations from previous landlords, and they can meet required deposits and agree to the house rules.
Which applicant gets the home? It better be the single mother with 10 children.
Landlords cannot be discriminatory based on the number of people in the family, who leads it and the configuration of the numbers.
It will surprise most people to discover that there is nothing illegal about 12 people living in a four bedroom home, even in a three bedroom home. There is no question that such a population creates an extra stress on the house, parking availability and city services.
However, it is not illegal to have 10 children. Laws prevent discriminating against tenants on the basis of gender, familial status, race, color, creed, sexual orientation and national origin.
There is a crisis developing in America and in California. It is in our neighborhoods now and will be tomorrow.
Housing is a problem. We aren’t providing enough housing for the people who are born here.
Controversial? Yes. Problematic? Yes. Resolvable? Maybe.
The current housing downturn is adding to the problem. Investors are waiting. Buyers are waiting. Sellers are waiting.
Home ownership for some provides housing opportunities for others. If your house is on the market right now and you don’t really need to sell, the best thing you can do is wait for a better time.
You need to meet the market, but there is concern that some homes many not sell at almost any “reasonable” price. That’s an odd thought for Ventura County, isn’t it.
Kay Wilson-Bolton is the owner of CENTURY 21 Buena Vista and CENTURY 21 Ability. She brings a regional perspective to local issues. She can be reached at 805.340.5025. Her web address is www.readysetkay.com