The Chicago Association of REALTORS®, the “Voice for Real Estate” in Chicago since 1883, represents over 17,000 members from all real estate specialties including commercial sales, development, property management, appraisal, auctions and residential sales.
We voice our adamant opposition to the proposed Just Cause Eviction Ordinance.
Not only is the ordinance an outright violation of private property rights, wherein you no longer have a say in who stays in your property, it further reduces the very few remaining options of property owners when tenants break rules or exhibit behavior that disrupts the building and other tenants.
Eviction is always the last, worst-case scenario for any property owner. Not only are the landlord-tenant laws in Chicago extremely clear in their protection of tenants, but tenants have been further protected from eviction and even disincentivized to pay rent for the past +18 months by numerous mandates at all levels of the government, despite access to rental assistance.
Outside of the outsized financial burden these eviction ordinances have placed on property owners, this additional legislation threatens to overburden our court system moving forward, basically mandating that for a property owner to gain the right to ask a tenant to leave, a property owner must go to court. Going to court means hiring a lawyer, adding additional costs to an already costly business.
Further, the inclusion of a mandatory registration fee for apartment units of any size, with the exception of owner-occupied 3 units or fewer, is a clear cash grab that punishes those who have chosen to expand housing options and choices in our city by making available their private property.
All in all, the Just Cause Eviction Ordinance does not protect tenants; instead, it threatens to further burden the process of renting available housing to those in need and adds additional costs and risks to property owners already operating in an expensive, highly regulated environment. Chicago is already a challenging environment in which to rent out property; as such, we should be looking for solutions to expand access, reduce costs and encourage good neighbor behavior in our communities.
Earlier today, Director of External and Government Affairs Kristopher J. Anderson testified during the Housing and Real Estate Committee’s Subject Matter Hearing on Just Cause Evictions.
Watch the full hearing here, and read our issue summary on Just Cause Evictions here.