They’re always on the cutting edge in hip Seattle.
President Obama may be determined to transform the character of America’s neighborhoods by forcing lower-income housing into the middle-class suburbs, but Seattle’s Mayor Ed Murray is thinking even further ahead. It has come to his attention that observant Muslims can have a hard time buying homes, because sharia law prohibits paying interest on loans.
He proposes to use government to make sure there’s broader access in Seattle to sharia-compliant banking for Muslim home-buyers.
As the Puget Sound Business Journal points out, “It’s unclear how many Muslims in Seattle would benefit from Murray’s plan.”
For some Muslims, it can be hard to buy a house, and Mayor Ed Murray plans to do something about it.
On Monday, Murray’s housing committee released its recommendations for ways the city can increase housing in the city. Most ideas were what you’d expect, including increasing the city’s housing levy and implementing new rules and regulations to foster development of market-rate and lower-income housing.
One suggestion would help followers of Sharia law buy houses. That’s virtually impossible now because Sharia law prohibits payment of interest on loans. The 28-member committee recommended the city convene lenders and community leaders to explore options for increasing access to Sharia-compliant loan products.
More and more lenders are offering Sharia-compliant financing, according to a USA Today report. The sector has grown to more than $1.6 trillion in assets worldwide over the past three decades, and analysts see potential for continued growth as the number of Muslims in the United States and Europe grows.
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