Cook County Assessor Joseph Berrios Talks Taxes

As the triennial assessments are poised to launch this month, Assessor Joseph Berrios spoke at the CommercialForum Networking Breakfast, held at Cliff Dwellers on February 10th, to discuss the impact of these assessments on commercial real estate in Chicago. IMG_20150210_092010350_HDRBerrios 002 Berrios 003 Berrios 004 Berrios 008 Berrios 011 Berrios 013 Berrios 014 Assessor Berrios has worked to bring property assessments to fair market value, streamlining the assessment process, creating a more taxpayer-friendly website, and raising exemption savings. Berrios, along with Debuty Assessor Tom Jaconetty, emphasized the importance of the appeals process and their open access policy:
  • This is not our money, it’s the peoples money. What you pay in taxes and the services you get from those taxes are the taxpayer’s rights.
  • No one has a stake in a bad assessment.
  • We are not infallible; appraisal is an opinion.
Jaconetty went on to offer a snapshot of what they are seeing in terms of trends:
  • Downtown office vacancy at 13.5%-14%
  • Positive absorption in West Loop
    • 8 major leases
    • 6 sales in ’13 at $190-$325 sf; 2014 topped with a $670/sf sale
  • Sales activity increased in the Loop about 8%; $280/sf average
  • Suburban: the era of the sprawling corporate campus is over
  • Hotels are a barometer of economic stability
    • 2013: 1500 rooms added
    • 2014: 1800 rooms added
The next CommercialForum Networking Breakfast is slated for April 21st from 9:00 AM – 10:30 AM at Cliff Dwellers, 200 S Michigan Ave. Join CommercialForum today for legislative advocacy, professional development, and member discounts for industry events like these. For more information, please contact Felicia Yonter at 312.214.5534 or