The Sheikh family signs papers to close on their first home. (Photo courtesy African Development Center)
Parallel systems in America? Since when and why? Galloping sharia. Vile, all of it. It's a usurpation of the the American way.
For many Minnesota Muslims, it's been virtually
impossible to buy a home, because Islamic law forbids the paying or charging of
Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww. So why did they come to America if they had no desire to integrate into the fabric of American society?
The African Development Center, with support from the state's housing agency, is now offering Islamic mortgages as a way to help close the home ownership gap among Muslim immigrants.
Minneapolis, Minn. — Islamic law does make exceptions to the
ban on interest, if one's family is at stake. But the exceptions are open to
interpretation and for many observant Muslims, conventional mortgages are
So why come here? Why not buy their home in the Islamic home countries?
Nawawi Sheikh is one of them. The Somali-American says he and his wife just couldn't go against their beliefs, even if it meant giving up their dream of owning a home. Still, he grew tired of moving from one rented apartment to another.
"One thing I hated was moving. I don't like to move all the time," he says.
He has no plans to move again anytime soon. Sheikh is the first home buyer to get a loan through the state's New Markets Mortgage Program. That's because, program manager Nimo Farah says, he has all the makings of a successful homeowner.
"I had lots of applications, but he's the first one, because really, he was ready. He has been working at the same job for quite a while; he took care of his credit; he had the right size family, and he had all his documents together," she said. "He was basically ready to go."
The program is targeted at low-to-moderate income families. Qualified applicants have to complete first-time home buyer education classes. The goal is to help Muslim home buyers build wealth and reap the benefits of home ownership.
Here's how the mortgage, known as Murabaha financing or "cost plus sale," works:
The state buys a home and resells it to the buyer at a higher price. The down payment and monthly installments are agreed to up front at current mortgage rates.
The deal is identical to a thirty-year fixed-rate loan, except
there's no additional interest, because the higher up front price factors in
payments that would have been made over the life of a traditional mortgage.
So the interest is in there but called something else. What bullshit. It's interest by any other name, but it's still interest.
A handful of private banks and lending institutions offer Islamic mortgages in the U.S., but Minnesota Housing is the first state agency to offer such a product. The program is the brainchild of Hussein Samatar, director of the African Development Center in Minneapolis.
"The process is different, but the outcome will look the same,"
Samatar says. "We wanted to be as conventional as possible, while respecting the
tenets of Islam."
I think I am going to puke.