The Small Landlord Letter
Rental housing policy & naturally affordable housing
Lenore Monello Schloming M.A.
Skip Schloming Ph.D.
102-R Inman Street
Cambridge MA 02139
617-354-2358 home (try first)
Comments & suggestions:
Bios: Lenore Monello Schloming M.A. & Skip Schloming Ph.D.
Our intellectual career began in academia and took unexpected turns. We met and married while graduate students in sociology at Brandeis University during the tumultuous Sixties – anti-war, anti-establishment, pro-civil-rights, and hippie communalism. Skip wrote his dissertation “Centralization and Decentralization” and received his Ph.D. in 1974. Lenore wrote her dissertation “The Geometry of Social Life,” had it reviewed – and receive twin sons.
Our doctoral research and the 1970s oil crisis led us to 60 acres in rural Maine where we homesteaded for ten years and operated a small private elementary school. Skip wrote one-act musicals for our students and subsequently wrote the book and lyrics for a full-length adult musical based on The Emperor’s New Clothes, “That Emperor’s Fool,” www.thatemperorsfool.com.
From our marriage onward, we managed rental housing in Cambridge and Somerville, Massachusetts, owned by Lenore’s parents and eventually by us. This property brought us back to Cambridge in 1989.
In 1996, we became president and executive director, respectively, of the Small Property Owners Association, a group of small landlords that had suffered for 25 years under Cambridge’s stringent rent control system. Having failed in all its efforts to reform Cambridge's system, the group launched a statewide referendum in 1994 and ended rent control in Boston, Cambridge, and Brookline – by popular vote in this very liberal state. For 23 years as this group’s heads, we drafted over 200 monthly newsletters, critical of nearly every aspect of landlord-tenant law in Massachusetts. We resigned from our roles in this group in October 2021. We are now drafting a work “Rents in America: The failure of rental housing policy in Massachusetts and nationwide,” in progress.
Throughout our ventures, our doctoral work remained salient. We have lately developed our ideas more fully in a website-in-progress: "Wild to Civilized: Human movement patterns from the prehistoric African wilderness to today's global industrial civilization," www.wildtocivilized.com