Source of Income Discrimination
Currently, source of income is not included in Buncombe County’s or the Asheville’s non-discrimination ordinances.
This means landlords can deny a person a lease based upon the income they use to pay rent (housing vouchers, child support, veteran subsidy, etc.) With rents skyrocketing and a massive housing shortage, renters need help now accessing a stable home.
Research shows housing vouchers reduce homelessness, overcrowding, and housing instability, as well as give people with lower income greater choice about where they live. A household with a voucher pays 30% of their income for rent and utilities while the voucher covers the rest.
Despite voucher’s effectiveness, this rental assistance program is vastly underfunded and underutilized. Once a family has a voucher, it is not uncommon to wait years before a property owner accepts it.
By adding source of income protection to the Non-Discrimination Ordinance, this could prevent years of hardship for families with vouchers and provide access to a decent place to live.
With Habitat’s support, a coalition of local fair housing advocates and residents impacted by housing discrimination have been advocating for source of income protection for years.
Please join us and urge your City and County elected officials to take action to protect renters against source of income discrimination.
Get email addresses for your City Council members and the Buncombe County Commissioners.
Sample email language below:
Currently landlords can deny a person a lease based upon the income they use to pay rent (housing vouchers, child support, veteran subsidy, etc.) With rents skyrocketing and a massive housing shortage, renters need help now accessing a stable home.
No one should be denied a place to live because of how they pay their rent. I urge you to take action to protect renters and add source of income to the current Non-Discrimination Ordinance.