Fall 2021 Edition
Rogers Park Builder
If you missed the last window of rent relief last summer, or if you applied but did not get assistance, take heart: more is coming. In fact, some of it is already here.

Emily Bloom-Carlin, Program Officer for The Preservation Compact at Community Investment Corp., is as knowledgeable about current and planned rent relief programs as anyone around. Emily spent a little time with me, going over what is currently available and what is coming, and provided several useful links for those looking for more information.
As they have done twice before, IHDA and the City of Chicago will open a “round three” rent relief program that will have a strict application “window” of just a few weeks. Since this will be the largest source of additional rent relief funds, it is important to know what these application dates are and get your applications in before they close.
Latinos have been a part of Chicago’s ethnic quilt for nearly as long as the city has existed. The first Latinos, mostly of Mexican origin, arrived in the city in the late 1800s. But their numbers remained small well into the 20th Century.

This started to change in the 50s and 60s as waves of Puerto Ricans and then Cubans began making their way to Chicago for both economic and political reasons. Immigration really took off after the passage of the Immigration and Nationality Act in 1965.
Under the new law, “gateway cities” like Chicago started to see large flows of people arriving from far-flung places all across the globe. While Mexicans comprised the largest immigrant group to Chicago, immigrants from across Latin America were drawn to the city and established roots here.
You wouldn’t think a global pandemic, the sudden evaporation of 25 millions jobs, and massive social unrest in the wake of the killing of George Floyd could do anything good for the real estate industry.

Well, take the last 18 months as proof that predicting the future is harder than it looks.
We all now know that, despite the initial calamity of the pandemic, millions of households – many of them making good salaries – kept working from home, and kept getting paid. But the stay-at-home mandates meant they had nowhere to spend their money.

So what did these remote workers do? Well, at first, they mostly ordered lots of stuff on Amazon. But then, many of them decided the pandemic was an excellent excuse to either fix up their current homes or go find a new, bigger one.
Jerry’s direct involvement with RPBG is relatively recent, and it has only been a little over a year that Jerry accepted Mike Glasser’s invitation to become an RPBG Director. But Jerry is no newcomer to real estate. In fact, there are few people in our organization with Jerry’s broad experience.
After interviewing Jerry for this article, I came to one firm conclusion: the man never sleeps! He probably gets a wink in from time to time. But Jerry is a multi-tasker if ever there was one and can do in a day what most of us would take a week to accomplish! Jerry describes himself as someone who can’t sit still and is always looking for the next challenge.
Last month, Chad Thomas, Principal of Sullivan High School in Rogers Park, reached out to the Rogers Park Builders Group with a special request:

“We have developed a wonderful new tradition at Sullivan we would like to continue. Can you help?”

Principal Thomas was referring to an incredible event – the annual Sullivan Thanksgiving Celebration – that offers Sullivan’s numerous refugee and immigrant students an opportunity to learn about this quintessential “American holiday.” Over 40% of Sullivan’s student body consists of immigrants and refugees. Collectively, they represent over 50 countries and speak over 40 different languages, resulting in Sullivan proudly proclaiming itself “Refugee High.”
Steve Cain
Rent relief sounded great when I first heard about it. Billions of dollars provided by the federal government to keep tenants in their apartments and help housing providers withstand the impact of large revenue losses and an inability to evict tenants for a period of months that, in Illinois, lasted more than a year and a half.

But the Devil, as they say, is in the details. In my direct experience, it was more like a comedy of errors that would have been funny had the stakes not been so high.

Verella Osborne, President, Legal Document Management, Inc.
What is the current status of residential eviction prosecution in Illinois and Cook County? How much have the procedures and fees changed since COVID first took hold, and are these changes permanent?

A dizzying glance at the Federal laws, State Executive Orders, Supreme Court Rules and Circuit Court General Orders passed since March 2020 prove their unified aim was to forbid housing providers from removing any residential occupant except in rare emergency situations. In Illinois, until the eviction moratorium was lifted in early October, no exception was made for small property owners or housing providers at risk of foreclosure due to non-payment of rent by civil trespassers, other illegal occupants or legal tenants who stopped paying rent but refused to apply for rental assistance. Every jurisdiction has taken a broad, one-size-fits-all position regardless of the damage done to housing providers and affordable housing.
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Rogers Park Builders Group encourages and supports responsible residential and commercial property investment, development, and ownership in the Rogers Park community.