housing

The lobby at Exeter House, which was built as a luxury, live-in hotel in the 1920s.
KUOW Photo/Bond Huberman

Exeter House in downtown Seattle was built as an apartment hotel for elegant living in the 1920s. It was part of a construction boom downtown at the time.

Would you agree to pay more taxes every year to keep low-income people in their homes? That's one goal of Seattle's proposed housing levy.

The public can weigh in at a hearing Monday in City Hall at 5:30 p.m.

The Department of Housing and Urban Development is making it easier for people with criminal records to find housing.

In new guidance, released Monday, HUD tells landlords and home sellers that turning down tenants or buyers based on their criminal records may violate the Fair Housing Act.

People with criminal records aren't a protected class under the Fair Housing Act, and the guidance from HUD's general counsel says that in some cases, turning down an individual tenant because of his or her record can be legally justified.

LaToya Fowlkes is standing outside rent court in Baltimore. A judge has just ruled that Fowlkes has to pay her landlord $4,900 in rent and fees despite her complaints that the house has leaky water pipes, chipped paint, rodents and a huge hole in the living room wall.

But Fowlkes didn't notify her landlord of the problems by certified mail — something the judge said she should have done to avoid eviction.

Terrell Walker lives in a one-bedroom apartment in Southeast Washington, D.C., with her 9-year-old and 2-year-old daughters.

Walker stopped paying her rent last September because, she says, her apartment is in horrible condition — and she is fighting her landlord's eviction threat in court.

But when tenants don't pay, landlords say they have less money to fix things up.

Every morning for weeks, Meagen Limes made the same phone call: to a court in Washington, D.C., to see if that day was the day she'd be evicted from her home.

Limes faced eviction because she couldn't pay rent on her three-bedroom apartment in Southeast Washington, where many of the city's poorest residents live.

It can sometimes take weeks before the marshals actually show up at your door, and Limes fully expected to be homeless any day.

Former Attorney General Rob McKenna, left, writer & activist Eric Liu, host Bill Radke and state Rep. Noel Frame.
KUOW Photo/Bond Huberman

Chelsea Clinton says her mom Hillary would not let the perfect be the enemy of the good. Is that what a president should be? 

A classic Craftsman in Seattle's Mount Baker neighborhood. Most of the neighborhood was developed in the early 20th century when architecture was in its heyday.
KUOW Photo/Bond Huberman

Look around almost any Seattle neighborhood and you’ll see them: Modest one-story homes, with large, covered porches and eaves that shield wooden siding from the rain.

They’re Craftsman-style bungalows, and you’ll find hundreds of them here, from Wallingford and Ravenna to Mount Baker and over the bridge in West Seattle.

Police and city staff arrived in the morning of Friday, March 11 to force out the remaining 16 residents atat the former Nickelsville camp on South Dearborn Street.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Seattle police cleared out a homeless camp known as Nickelsville Friday. It’s been temporarily located on South Dearborn Street, near the freeway, since 2014.

Ronald Hawthorne was one of the first to see police arrive and alerted other campers.

“I told them look, the police are all here. There’s a lot of them and they say we only got 30 minutes to get out,” Hawthorne said.

Temporary is lasting a long time for evacuees in neat blocks of prefabricated housing in Fukushima city. The wood siding on their tiny homes looks new. But these trailers are stretching into their fifth year of use.

Saki Sato, 77, shows me around her home, where she lives alone in a kind of limbo. Each room is about the size of a king-size mattress.

Stackhouse Apartments, South Lake Union
KUOW Photo/Ross Reynolds

The Seattle City Council showed early signs of support Thursday for Mayor Ed Murray's housing levy. Murray has proposed a $290 million levy that's twice the size of the existing one.

The council will decide whether to put the measure on the August ballot. First, the council's looking at Seattle's housing needs.

Apartment housing: Colorful architecture next to the Museum of Glass in Tacoma, Washington.
Flickr Photo/Sheila Sund (CC BY 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/CNyuWi

Bill Radke speaks with Tacoma Mayor Marilyn Strickland about how the city is dealing with rising rents. According to Axiometrics Inc., a company that tracks national rental markets, the rate of rent growth in Tacoma was higher than the rate of rent growth in Seattle in January 2016. 

One of the final items Oregon lawmakers approved before closing out their 2016 legislative session Thursday was a measure that would allow cities and counties to require developers to include low-income housing options in new developments.

housing: Apartment buildings in the University District, Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Kara McDermott

Jeannie Yandel talks to Seattle Mayor Ed Murray about the affordable housing levy and why he believes it is an important for voters to pass. For the last five years, Seattle voters have taxed homeowners to pay for affordable housing. Murray wants to effectively double the amount of money homeowners pay. 

Barbara Dobkin, council of the North Highline Unincorporated Area Council, stands with her dog Mattie on a hill in front of the Seattle city-owned land she'd like to see turned into a park.
KUOW Photo/Joshua McNichols

It’s nearly impossible to find empty land in Seattle. But down at the far south end, there’s 40 acres with nothing on it. And it’s owned by the city of Seattle.

Locals would like to keep it wild. They think of it as “Discovery Park South.” But the city has other plans.

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