Cook County Illinois - JHA ~ It is a Game Changer?

9 Replies

Is all my Illinois, Cook County, landlords/sellers of real estate aware of the new Amendment? Just Housing Amendment went into effect on January 1, 2020 with a delayed enforcement until February 1, 2020. 

Taken from the cookcountyil.gov/just-housing-amendment-human-rights-ordiance website:

Why did the Cook County Board of Commissioners pass the Just Housing Amendment (JHA) to the Human Rights Ordinance?

In most cities, people with any kind of criminal record, even just an arrest, can be unfairly denied housing. The JHA was passed to help these individuals access safe, stable and affordable housing.

The JHA:

  1. 1. Prohibits housing providers and landlords from denying a housing application based on juvenile and arrest records; and
  2. 2. Requires landlords to perform an individualized assessment prior to denying any housing.

According to their website, this applies to all real estate transactions including sale, rental, lease, and sublease renewal of residential properties.

Is this a game changer?

Originally posted by @Patrice Boenzi :

  1. 1. Prohibits housing providers and landlords from denying a housing application based on juvenile and arrest records; and


It seems like a typical promise a lot to the poor, but in reality do nothing for them, vote-getter grandstand.

Those who fall under (#1) will probably be a very small pool of individuals (who will never fill out a rental application anyway).

Juvenile Convictions and adult Arrest only (without prior adult to convictions) seems like it would be a tiny pool of applicants.

Tough guy types tend to have a long list of "Convictions" as adults, in addition to Juvenile convictions (and #1 doesn't seem to address them). 

Just my 2 cents.

 

 

For landlords in Cook County, it's one more layer of risk that needs to be accounted for. Ultimately, it may translate into higher rents and/or lower property values to have to account for that risk. The real kicker is that the eviction process can take six months so your good tenants can just leave if if you end up with a bad apple. In my opinion, people should be held accountable for their actions and we need to implement a timely eviction process so that landlords can be positive game changers.

@Joseph Konney very good point. My rentals are out-of-state and our last eviction took about 4-5 months and cost me about 4K not including lost rent. I had a Realtor, in the area, tell me the average eviction cost in a Illinois is $10k. What have you seen?



@Patrice Boenzi I've had a number of evictions. Court, attorney, sheriff, and other costs total I would estimate average $1200. Lost rent averages 6 months (including the amount they were already behind when the case started). Typically, those who are evicted leave the place in less then stellar condition and may have left a bunch of stuff behind for you deal with as well. 

I only rent apartments and they are priced less than average. That being said, $10K could be in the ball park when you add it all together for the average eviction - but I typically don't reach that figure personally.

Wouldn't it be great if we could streamline the process down to have a court decision within no more than 30 days from the 5 day notice and have the option to privatize the sheriff's job of removing the tenant if they don't leave? I don't understand how the governing body figures waiting three months for the sheriff coming out to be reasonable - and you have to pay them a fee on top of it!

Originally posted by @Joseph Konney :

@Patrice Boenzi I've had a number of evictions. Court, attorney, sheriff, and other costs total I would estimate average $1200. Lost rent averages 6 months (including the amount they were already behind when the case started). Typically, those who are evicted leave the place in less then stellar condition and may have left a bunch of stuff behind for you deal with as well. 

I only rent apartments and they are priced less than average. That being said, $10K could be in the ball park when you add it all together for the average eviction - but I typically don't reach that figure personally.

Wouldn't it be great if we could streamline the process down to have a court decision within no more than 30 days from the 5 day notice and have the option to privatize the sheriff's job of removing the tenant if they don't leave? I don't understand how the governing body figures waiting three months for the sheriff coming out to be reasonable - and you have to pay them a fee on top of it!

My recent evictions cost my landlord about $1300 in legal fees and 8 months of lost rent.  That doesn't say anything about the condition of the property.

Cook County is the worst for it because it takes so long to even get a court date.  This is only going to make the rental fees for places go up even more in this area.  I'm already seeing application fees in DuPage County hitting the $300-$350 mark just to look over the background checks, finances and score out the application.  I think with this new law, you'll have to start hiring attorneys to examine the criminal history for compliance in the event of any reportable legal trouble.

I'm not in favor of this law.

 

Reviving this thread because I had a question about it. We're going through our first tenant screening with this law in place currently. We normally use Zumper for all-in-one screening (credit, criminal, employment, etc) now they do not do the criminal check.

Does anyone have any suggestions for a service that could just do the criminal check. Or if there are any all-in-one screening tools left?

Thanks @Patrice Boenzi ! That worked perfectly and they have a basic plan that just does the criminal check which is what I needed. For anyone else, to just do the criminal background check you don't need their SSN, just info you can find on a driver's license.