Sean Hannity’s real estate holdings in low-income areas earn his companies million in profits, but that hasn’t stopped him from going after the poor peosple who live in his often sub-standard properties.
An aggressive approach to rent collection has lasting consequences for tenants living in Sean Hannity’s properties in low-income areas.
The Washington Post published a disturbing report this week on former tenants like single mother Shemeika Fluelin and others who have been evicted after falling behind on their rent or subjected to exorbitant late fees and court costs.
According to The Washington Post,
For years, Fox News host Sean Hannity has poured his fortune into a surprising side venture: a vast portfolio of rental properties in working-class neighborhoods. He described those holdings in compassionate terms when they came to light last month, saying he invests in places that “otherwise might struggle to receive such support.”
But a Washington Post analysis shows that managers at Hannity’s four largest apartment complexes in Georgia have taken an unusually aggressive approach to rent collection. They have sought court-ordered evictions at twice the statewide rate — in a state known for high numbers of evictions and landlord-friendly laws — and frequently have done so less than two weeks after a missed payment.
Continuing, they reported that:
Property managers at the complexes sought to evict tenants more than 230 times in 2017, court records show. At one, a 112-unit subdivision in a suburb west of Atlanta, 94 eviction actions were filed last year, records show.
Among the tenants Hannity’s property managers sought to evict, records show, were a former corrections officer and her wife, who fell behind while awaiting a disability determination; a double amputee who had lived in an apartment with her daughter for five years but did not pay on time after being hospitalized; and a single mother of three whose $980 rent check was rejected because she could not come up with a $1,050 cleaning fee for a bedbug infestation.
Some of the court files include notes showing that sheriff’s deputies removed residents. More often, though, tenants who were taken to court avoided eviction by paying their past-due rent along with hundreds of dollars in late fees and other costs, records show. The Post found that property managers repeatedly filed eviction actions against many of those residents.
The Washington Post reached out to three experts in the field who “said the pattern suggests that the threat of eviction is being used not just to remove tenants but also to generate revenue.”
Susan Reif, head of the Eviction Prevention Project at the publicly funded Georgia Legal Services Program, told The Washington Post that: “When they are serially filing against the same tenants, they are using the courts as collection agencies. It appears they are just trying to increase their profit margin by demanding fees under the threat of being evicted from your home.”
Birds of a feather flock together – Hannity’s pattern closely follows that of Jared Kushner
It seems the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree when it comes to disenfranchising America’s working class families.
Liberals Unite contributor Ann Werner reported in August 2017 that Jared Kushner’s real estate holdings in Maryland earn his companies $30 million in profits, but that hasn’t stopped him from going after the poor people who live in the often sub-standard properties by utilizing what is termed ‘body attachments,’ which is a euphemism for arrest.”
As Werner reported:
The Baltimore Sun reported that the Kushner companies, which own 17 apartment complexes in Maryland, have sought the arrest of 105 former tenants for failing to appear in court to face charges of unpaid debt. Court records show that 20 former Kushner tenants have been arrested.
An analysis of Maryland District Court records shows that the Kushner companies used this tactic more than any other landlord in the state since 2013 – the first full year the companies operated in Maryland. Since that time, Kushner affiliated companies have filed at minimum 1,250 legal actions and have reaped $5.4 million in judgments against tenants who owed an average of $4,400. That figure includes the original debt, court costs, legal fees and interest.
Werner went on to report that: “According to officials within the Kushner organization, body attachments are used only as a last resort. And sure, they are within state law for doing so. But as critics have said, it amounts to arresting and jailing people for the terrible offense of being poor.”
You can see a short, but in-depth, report by The Washington Post detailing their analysis, below: