A ‘vegan landlord’ has sparked controversy after banning potential tenants from cooking meat or fish in her apartment building.
Earlier this month, the homeowner put two apartments up for rent in their townhouse in Fort Greene, Brooklyn.
One-bedroom apartments were on the market for $4,500 and $5,750 a month, respectively, the New York Times reported.
The apartment listing, which has since been deleted, describes how the ‘amazing vegetarian landlord’ is asking their new tenants to respect the ‘no meat/fish’ rule in their building.
Although the landlord said they were open to carnivores living on their property, they requested that they refrain from cooking any meat or fish.
The vegan homeowners put up two apartments for rent in their townhouse in Fort Greene, Brooklyn [stock photo]
During an open house over the weekend, broker Andrea Kelly told a prospective resident the reasoning behind the unusual clause.
He explained: ‘Not only is it vegetarian, but the owner lives in the building and doesn’t want the smell of meat cooking to waft upstairs.’
After facing backlash from potential renters, the listing was removed from the Douglas Elliman website and then reposted without any mention of the cooking rules.
However, the landlord’s ex-husband – who is also a vegetarian – insists it is ‘not discrimination’.
They said: ‘You have to sit in the building.’
Since the couple bought the property in 2007, they have never rented out the apartments for meat.
New York’s Human Rights Act states that landlords are not allowed to exclude potential tenants based on their race, gender, age, sexual orientation, religion, employment or family status.
However, it is legal for landlords to refuse to rent their properties to meat eaters – many around town also ban smokers.
In 2018, a Manchester landlord was accused of ‘discrimination’ after he banned vegetarians from applying to stay in his spare room. Full ad list with lines ***If you’re a vegetarian, don’t bother with the capital letters*
While attending the open house, Tessa Reuben and partner Darian Ghasemi said they would consider making an offer on the apartment because they regularly order takeout.
But on second thought, Tessa said: ‘What makes me more nervous than the rules is knowing there’s someone up there making sure you’re following them.’
In 2018, a Manchester landlord was accused of ‘discrimination’ after he banned vegetarians from applying to stay in his spare room.
The live-in landlord, listed as ‘Alex’ in the SpareRoom ad, which went live on Monday, told visitors in the block capital to ‘don’t bother if you’re vegetarian’ before continuing to list other requirements.
His duplex apartment in Manchester’s Northern Quarter has a spacious living room, bathroom and two bedrooms for £700 a month.
A spokesperson for The Vegan Society said at the time: ‘While we can appreciate that the landlord intended the ad to be humorous, we don’t quite understand why he would be opposed to living with vegans.
‘It’s worth noting that the discrimination wouldn’t be appropriate if he let out an entire house but there is an exemption in some circumstances, such as if you’re a live-in landlord.
‘It is a well-known fact that many vegetarians are good cooks who pay attention to what goes into their food.
‘Vegans are often happy to cook for their housemates too, which we think might make Alex reconsider her decision to ban them from their house.
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