Landlord settles fair housing charge
CONCORD - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development announced Friday that Scott Walker and his company, Premiere Real Estate, have agreed to pay $9,000 to settle allegations that they refused to rent to families with children in violation of the Fair Housing Act.
The Fair Housing Act prohibits denying housing to families because they have children.
HUD issued a charge of discrimination after a single mother with a 14-year-old child filed a complaint alleging that Walker and Premiere Real Estate refused her request to rent a two-bedroom apartment. The apartment is on the second floor of a two-unit building. Walker uses the first floor unit as his office.
HUD's charge asserted that when the woman inquired about the unit, Walker informed her that families with children didn't work out in the past because his business is below the rental unit. Walker and Premiere Real Estate allegedly screened applicants and showed available apartments only to people who did not have children.
Under the consent order, Walker and Premiere Real Estate agreed to pay $3,000 to the woman and a $5,000 civil penalty to the government. In addition, they will pay $1,000 to three other victims affected by the company's rental policy.