Real Estate in Chicago During Covid

Chicago, Illinois, USA cityscape over the river at twilight.
Real Estate in Chicago During Covid by Donna Coquilla

Coronavirus threatens paychecks and city ordinances, and state laws propose to stop the sale of food and beverages in retail stores and restaurants in the city of Chicago. Coronaviruses threaten your paychecks, a city ordinance and some state laws that are supposed to stop the sale of food and beverages at retail in Chicago and other cities across the country. Coronovirus threatens your checkbooks or city regulations and regulations in cities around the world.

The governor’s order of May 7, 2020 directs the Illinois Department of Finance (DFS) and the Chicago Police Department (CPD) to make the announcement required by state law to file foreclosure lawsuits against most residential mortgages.

The law provides for a temporary moratorium on foreclosure of federally backed mortgage loans on covered real estate, including properties that have a federally subsidized – secured multi-family mortgage, a federal loan – worth less than 30 percent, or a loan worth more than 50 percent of the market value of the property, and any other government housing program in which they participate. Service providers that rely on federal funds for these mortgages are also prevented from initiating foreclosure, seeking a foreclosure judgment, sales order, or enforcement – related eviction or sales for at least 60 days beginning March 18, 2020.

Commercial landlords are also prohibited from voluntarily evicting commercial tenants whose businesses are closed due to the mandate to reduce the spread of the virus. Commercial landlords are likely to have to negotiate with their tenants, who are facing significant economic pressures to keep pace with their rental obligations, and their lenders. If a landlord unexpectedly stands empty and wants to sell, there is no one who can buy the property. Depending on how sustained the economic impact of the COVID-19 outbreak was recently, it is likely that the long-term viability of commercial real estate in Chicago and other cities across the country should be reviewed.

The IDPR urges mortgage servicers to delay mortgage payments for up to 90 days for those suffering from the COVID-19 pandemic. For more information about Illinois – licensed mortgage servicers and to help borrowers affected by COID-19, visit the Illinois Department of Financial Services.

Tenants who secure direct cash payments under the CARES Act and commercial tenants who are considering new loan programs to finance rent payments should increase the likelihood that tenants will meet their rental obligations. When a lender closes its doors for health reasons, the lender must inform the IDFPR and provide appropriate ways to ensure that borrowers can make payments to avoid default.

How can retail landlords help tenants whose businesses have had to close in response to COVID-19? How have traditional retail customers adapted to the market conditions caused by CO VID-19 and how do you think these adaptations will continue to affect retail in the future? Cities and counties that can sell their vacant properties can avoid the permanent scars of recession, but market adjustments that can be viewed as catastrophic are part of a solution. Shop at the Center, “Shopping Center of Chicago: Retail Vacancy in Chicago,” Chicago Business Journal, March / April 2013.

BC Housing has asked for assistance in providing subsidised housing to low-income families in need of affordable housing during the COVID 19 outbreak. BC Housing asks for help in providing subsidised housing in lower and middle-class neighborhoods on Chicago’s South and West Side due to a CO VID 21 outbreak, March / April 2013, Chicago Business Journal, April / May 2013. Vancouver, BC Housing was asked to provide subsidies to low-income families and children in need of affordable housing during and after the COVID ’19 outbreak in February / March 2014.

The National Multifamily Housing Council issued a press release on March 22 calling on homeowners and landlords to stop giving apartment loans to tenants who have experienced rent increases of more than 30% in the last three months. In a March 23 notice, the FHFA said it would offer forbearance to several homeowners in their mortgage payments if they suspend their mortgage payments on the rent that tenants pay because of the effects of the coronavirus. Reductions in the billions of dollars in home loans for borrowers who have suspended their mortgages for renters struggling to pay their rent because of the housing crisis.

On April 15, Portola Valley City Council imposed a moratorium on the sale of properties to small businesses that cannot pay rent under COVID 19. Tenants who have been able to prove that their rent is insolvent due to the effects of coronavirus on their health, mental health or other health problems.

We expect that many landlords will be pushing their tenants to pay their rent while their business is closed or restricted, whether it is a restaurant or bar that can only be operated for delivery. Savvy landlords see this as an opportunity to remove restrictions from their tenancy agreements, such as exclusivity clauses and use clauses, which prevent them from occupying empty premises. Whether they are acting on behalf of campaign aides or not, elected officials should push for this policy to be extended to commercial real estate, so that rental prices can soar for anyone who wants to open a business.


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