As Seattle considers ways to address housing affordability, Mayor Ed Murray’s proposal released last week called for exploring ways to help low- and medium-income Muslims who follow Sharia law purchase homes.
Murray’s proposal, first reported by the Puget Sound Business Journal, calls for community leaders and lenders to collaborate on exploring different options.
“The City will convene lenders, housing nonprofits and community leaders to explore the best options for increasing access to Sharia-compliant loan products to help these residents become homeowners in Seattle,” according to his proposal released last week.
Islamic law prohibits paying or collecting interest, so traditional mortgages are out of reach for people who adhere strictly to Sharia law.
However, banks worldwide and in the U.S. have developed Sharia-compliant ways to raise capital for their businesses and borrow money for homes and cars, according to a 2014 article in USA Today.
The Guardian explains that several options for Sharia-compliant financing includes leasing agreements, profit-sharing and other means of trade that do not involve interest payments.