LETTER: Communication among all parties is needed

Experiencing the cultural change from hippies to yuppies, from anything goes to gentrification, has been interesting to say the least. Many have been caught in Vashon’s Bermuda Triangle: renters, realtors, bed and breakfast owners and landlords.

Renters need equitable housing within their budgets that is well maintained and offers enough domestic stability to get or stay on firm financial footing.

Realtors need inventory that keeps flowing in increasing values or the ability to manage properties for the least amount of costs. B&Bs need open booking dates.

Landlords need to protect investments and make the most money possible for reinvesting, for kids’ college funds or retirement.

The myth that renting is some sort of financial blessing where tenants choose to opt out of the responsibilities and costs of home ownership is being exposed. In its place are multiple narratives of a middle and lower class serving the upper class for chores and pleasures they choose, while enduring housing insecurity.

One thing is for sure. Vashon is at a crossroads, and intentional conversation among all parties would be beneficial.

Everybody’s money matters. A day, evening or afternoon of renters, realtors, B&B proprietors and landlords coming together would offer an opportunity to create a culture on the island where everyone’s financial needs can be met.

Renters can have access to affordable, well-maintained housing. Realtors and B&B owners can make a living. Landlords can enjoy and develop their investments.

Creating a system that supports domestic needs and enterprise is possible. First, everyone needs to be in the same room.

— Deborah H. Anderson

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