At This Dallas Apartment Complex, the Rent's Cheap but Your Car Better Not Be

Categories: Housing

rustedoldcar.jpg
Stephan Ridgway
Do not even think about getting near any Fath Properties with that thing.
Renting a place at the Cambridge Apartment Homes in Dallas won't put too big of a dent in your bank account--the complex, on Northwest Highway just off of Greenville Avenue, advertises studios for as little as $515 a month. But you might not know it from the parking lot. That's because the apartment's parent company, Fath Properties, has an unusual policy: No beat-up or otherwise unsightly cars allowed.

The management company, which owns 10 properties across Texas, explains right on its website:

One of our unique policies is our Vehicle Condition Agreement that is part of our Lease Agreement. Amazingly it came from our residents consistently telling us that the first thing they looked at were the cars in the parking lot. If there were rusted, heavily dented, disabled or unsightly cars, they assumed the property was poorly operated and they would have neighbors that were unacceptable. We understand that your automobile is a personal item; however, we believe that a car that is not well maintained detracts from the overall appearance of our customer's home.

One tipster tells Unfair Park that she tried to rent from Fath's Cambridge Court apartments but was rejected after the agent said her car didn't meet the property's standards. According to a Fath Properties form she showed Unfair Park, all cars must be listed on the rental application and "must adhere to Fath Properties Vehicle Policy."

"I've never heard of his type of rule being implemented by a landlord," says Frances Espinoza, the Executive Director of the North Texas Fair Housing Center. So is it discrimination? Not under housing laws. In fact, we have bad news for all of you loyal, trashy readers who collect piles of the Dallas Observer each week so that you can shield your car windows from bird shit: It's perfectly legal to exclude renters with ugly cars.

"Unfortunately, income level and poverty are not protected classes under the Fair Housing Law," Espinoza explains.

Reached by telephone, a Cambridge manager named Kris pointed out that Fath Properties is transparent about the policy, with information on the website. But what's a tenant to do who moves in and then gets into a fender bender? "We ask them to repair it," Kris says.

And if they refuse?

"We will tow if they don't repair it, but we give them a hang tag, and they are given plenty of warning," Kris adds.

Becky Alejandrino, the COO of Fath Properties, did not return an email message seeking comment.

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41 comments
lebowski300
lebowski300

The fundamental disconnect of the author's brain to reality is astounding.

roadsidecouch
roadsidecouch

In other words no white trash, blacks, or Mexicans allowed.

everlastingphelps
everlastingphelps topcommenter

I suspect they're going to run into real problems when their rejection rate just "happens" to coincide with race.

dsmithy3211
dsmithy3211

Something about this article doesn't pass the smell test.

"One tipster tells Unfair Park that she tried to rent from Fath's Cambridge Court apartments but was rejected after the agent said her car didn't meet the property's standards." OK, and? A sample size of one (even if fully reliable) does not a trend make. The article is also remarkably silent about any current tenant's car actually being towed for this, either legitimately or in a Black Bull we'll-tow-you-for-having-but-a-scratch kind of way. Which would be more problematic than a potential tenant allegedly being turned away as the result of this rule.

" "I've never heard of his type of rule being implemented by a landlord," says Frances Espinoza, the Executive Director of the North Texas Fair Housing Center." Let's leave aside for a moment whether this rule is good/equitable/libtarded (copyright killwhiteprivilege). We are to believe that the Executive Director of the North Texas Fair Housing Center has never even heard of such a rule being implemented?

" "Unfortunately, income level and poverty are not protected classes under the Fair Housing Law," Espinoza explains." Look, I'm a general supporter of access to affordable housing, but this must be the biggest load of drivel spewed on this website in a while. The essence of the Fair Housing Law is "If you can pay the rent and be a good tenant, then the landlord cannot deny you tenancy." Of course income level and poverty are not protected classes. How could you possibly not discriminate against income level and poverty?! I seriously hope Frances Espinoza was misquoted here or this quote was taken out of context.

/rant

Tim.Covington
Tim.Covington

Strange. When I rented an apartment near there in 1997 (apartments no longer exist, they were off of Meadow and 75) they had the same kind of policy. I do not believe it is as unusual as they are trying to make you believe. It is just that the complexes that do this usually charge more for rent.

ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul
ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul topcommenter

Ummm, ... you might want to mention that the $515/mo apt is a 445 sf studio apartment which works out to $1.15/sf.  Not exactly cheap.


Also in my younger days when I rented apartments to live in, I would drive around the complex and look at the cars that were there.

DMZ3
DMZ3

Augh. This article and its comments reminds me of what might be the thing that I absolutely hate most about Dallas, the whole "keeping up appearances" mentality people have about their cars, and how people look down on other people because of the car they drive. For a right-of-center town it couldn't be more snobby and elitist.

It's a car. It's a machine. You buy it used and drive it till it dies, bumps, warts and all. People in this city are so status-obsessed - and particularly car-status-obsessed - that it's sick.

killwhiteprivilege
killwhiteprivilege

Amy Silverstein, I hear there are some wonderful Section 8 apartments in that area that have totally improved the place. Perhaps you should move to one of the lovely Section 8 apartments in the Forest-Audelia-Skillman area, since you obviously have sympathy for people who live in trashy apartment complexes. You'd also get to celebrate the countless rich amazing vibrant benefits of Divershitty™ while simultaneously dismantling your "white privilege". What could possibly go wrong, Amy?

lemonaioli
lemonaioli

I judge a complex by how many f'ed up blinds there are. Just because you rent instead of own, your should still treat the place as if it was your own. I've rented for a long time and take care of my place like it's mine. I also drove an older car for a while but it was well maintained. It's true -- there are poor people who still manage to take care of their own and then there are people who just don't give a crap. Drive around 5 Points to see what I mean.

killwhiteprivilege
killwhiteprivilege

Waaaaaycism! Skwiminashun!

Another moronic "social justice" crusade for the "snarky libtard bloggers" at the Observer.

texpwr7529
texpwr7529

Towing disabled or unregistered/uninspected cars is fairly common practice.Doing it strictly based on appearance seems a little dicey.Do they deny some1 w/an older car b/c it's likely to break down?

Rumpunch1
Rumpunch1

I actually heard of many apartments doing this.  Another thing to consider -  if you treat your car like shit - you will probably treat your apartment like shit. 

Being low income doesn't necessarily mean that you have a POS car.  Notice the policy doesn't mention model or age - rather condition.  As a kid my family didn't have much money.  Our cars were cheap and old but clean and in good order.  Same went for our house - clean and well maintained.  My mom and dad would not have stood for anything less.  Pride should not know income levels.

mm32
mm32

Why don't they just put up a sign that says "$30K millionaires wanted"?   You know, people who spend more on Beemer payments and bottle service than they do on housing?

JRGG
JRGG

"Unfortunately, income level and poverty are not protected classes under the Fair Housing Law," Espinoza explains.... "It's highly unfair that renters from all income levels and poverty do not have equal access to condominiums at the Ritz. However, we will continue to fight for this type of equality. People with low income levels must have access to all of things people with high income levels have."

primi_timpano
primi_timpano topcommenter

I heard that checking out the pools was a good element of due diligence.

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

@DMZ3 I looked at the latest review of these apartments on apartmentratings.com.  If the reviewer is being truthful, they have much bigger issues to deal with at that complex than dents in a fender.

TheCredibleHulk
TheCredibleHulk topcommenter

@Myrna.Minkoff-Katz 

Roofline looks like Studebaker of that vintage and split windscreen definitely drops it in the '40's, but the grill is not quite right. Also, the fleetside back panels are throwing me off.

What the hell is that thing?

DMZ3
DMZ3

@Myrna.Minkoff-Katz @DMZ3 Gotcha. I'm kinda on a rampage so what I say might be hyperbole in parts. But I remember my ultra-frugal German-Texan grandmother (who lived through the Depression) getting onto my parents for buying an IKEA bookshelf once because it was considered too showy. A rusty old car isn't something to be ashamed of. 

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

@TheCredibleHulk  I know, right?  Suddenly I'm intrigued by that derelict vehicle.  I'm trying to now find out when the divided windshield bar became obsolete.  That could be a clue to the age of that very distressed motor car.  Oh, and the hood ornament could add another clue.

killwhiteprivilege
killwhiteprivilege

I notice that you failed to refute any of the facts I posted. You and Amy should move to a Northeast Dallas Section 8 apartment complex. The bruthaz there would looooove a couple of liberal Jewish girls like you two, and as an added bonus, you'd hardly ever see any of those awful white Texans that Observer libtards like you hate so much.

Rumpunch1
Rumpunch1

@whocareswhatithink @Rumpunch1 I drive through South Dallas often.  It is interesting how many well kept houses and yards there are between the dumps.  Funny though, the dumps almost always have a satellite dish.

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

No luck on the hood emblem, either.  I suspect Plymouth because its 1940s design was particularly rounded and bloated, rather fat.  Whereas the Fords always appeared to me to be a bit slimmer.

Also, I'm beginning to think that alterations were done to the original vehicle, which may be throwing us off the track.

TheCredibleHulk
TheCredibleHulk topcommenter

@MaxNoDifference @TheCredibleHulk @Myrna.Minkoff-Katz 

I can't find a picture of a pickup from that era with fleetsides like this vehicle has. Plus, check out the pic closely - the sides of the bed seem to be attached to the cab, akin to the Ford Ranchero or El Camino.

I'm pretty sure they made Rancheros in those years, but none of the photos I found look like this oddball.

primi_timpano
primi_timpano topcommenter

Myrna, I would never imagined your interest and knowledge of vintage trucks. Now if you can explain the infield fly rule . . . .

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

@TheCredibleHulk  OK.  And I'm noticing that the later 40s featured a horizontal and narrow grill stretching from headlight to headlight, whereas earlier grills were vertical.

TheCredibleHulk
TheCredibleHulk topcommenter

@Myrna.Minkoff-Katz

Split screens were all pretty much phased out by 1950.


Grill looks like Fords of that era, but they don't have that hood ornament and I can't magnify my screen enough to discern any markings on the hood ornament. *arrrrgh* I thought maybe Mercury, but I can't find a photo that looks right . . .

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