The Voice of Illinois
Property Owners

Real Property Alliance is
spreading the word about policies
and issues that affect residents.

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Real Property Alliance2020-05-14T19:17:32+00:00

Information every Illinois property owner should know

Find resources and information on policies and issues that affect Illinois residents.

Home Rule allows Illinois communities with fewer than 25,000 residents to impose a variety of taxes and fees.

Home Rule

A community’s vote for Home Rule allows elected officials to raise property taxes without having to first ask voters for direct permission.

Rent control kills development in Illinois, guarantees a never-ending cycle of affordable housing shortages and property tax increases, and ensures a rental property falls into disrepair due to lack of funds.

Rent Control

Rent control backers would argue the policy would lower housing costs. The research shows exactly the opposite happens.

Transfer taxes are assessed when a property is transferred/sold in Illinois. Most of the time, sellers pay. In some communities, buyers are hit with the tax.

Transfer Taxes

Some municipalities impose a tax on buyers and sellers of real estate. These taxes can destroy equity and make housing unaffordable.

Point of Sale Inspections are conducted by municipalities in Illinois to check for obvious building code violations.

Point of Sale Inspections

In many Illinois communities, the seller of an owner-occupied home is required to arrange for a pre-sale inspection. This can delay or kill a home sale.

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Information every Illinois property owner should know

Home Rule allows Illinois communities with fewer than 25,000 residents to impose a variety of taxes and fees.

Home Rule

A community’s vote for Home Rule allows elected officials to raise property taxes without having to first ask voters for direct permission.

LEARN MORE
Rent control kills development in Illinois, guarantees a never-ending cycle of affordable housing shortages and property tax increases, and ensures a rental property falls into disrepair due to lack of funds.

Rent Control

Rent control backers would argue the policy would lower housing costs. The research shows exactly the opposite happens.

LEARN MORE
Transfer taxes are assessed when a property is transferred/sold in Illinois. Most of the time, sellers pay. In some communities, buyers are hit with the tax.

Transfer Taxes

Some municipalities impose a tax on buyers and sellers of real estate. These taxes can destroy equity and make housing unaffordable.

LEARN MORE
Point of Sale Inspections are conducted by municipalities in Illinois to check for obvious building code violations.

Point of Sale Inspections

In many Illinois communities, the seller of an owner-occupied home is required to arrange for a pre-sale inspection. This can delay or kill a home sale.

LEARN MORE

The latest news about COVID-19 and private property rights

FAQs for Consumers

Pursuant to Governor Pritzker’s Executive Order, dated March 20, 2020, Section 1(12)(r), professional services, including real estate related services, were deemed essential, and were included in quite a long list of others considered critical to health of citizens, both physically, and to the extent possible, economically. 

We must recognize that the real estate industry is a very important cog in the local, state and national economy; one that is so important it warrants some protection to allow for continuance during these trying times. 

The Order admonishes those who are otherwise healthy and can keep working in any of the essential services to practice all of the recommended safety measures including “social distancing – 6 feet away from each other,” preventive hand-washing and frequent disinfecting. 

Further, it is important to note that brokers and their sponsoring companies must continue to make their own business decisions about whether to continue to operate at all, or how to best operate while taking the extraordinary safety measures listed above. You should note, however, that on April 1, 2020, the IL Dept. Of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) issued specific guidance indicating that open houses are prohibited during the pendency of the Order, and that rental units that are occupied by tenants must not be shown during this time.   

You can visit this page for regularly updated information regarding how to navigate personal and professional challenges during this time. 

Under the present circumstances, there are a lot of IFs in this question. First, it is important to note that pursuant to the governor’s Executive Order, dated March 20, 2020, real estate services are included as essential services. So, it is reasonable to infer that a consumer seeking those essential services could legally do so under the Order. Just as a consumer is allowed to go to the grocery store, a consumer is allowed to shop for housing or office space or other real estate. This is supported at Section 1(5) of the Order. 

While a physical showing might not be the best option in this current environment, if there is a seller needing and willing to accommodate a physical showing to a serious buyer, and a serious buyer willing and able to attend a physical showing, it is allowable under the Order so long as social distancing parameters are being maintained. In addition, pursuant to DCEO guidance published April 1, 2020, if there is a physical showing, the home must be vacant or owner-occupied and is restricted to no more than 4 people allowed. Open houses are prohibited. Physical showings are also prohibited in rental units that are occupied by tenants, during the pendency of the Order.  

Be clear, this is not a recommendation to do in-person what could otherwise be done remotely; but it is a statement that assuming all requirements are metsome showings could be done in a legal manner 

Updated May 1, 2020: The existing DCEO guidance previously issued to clarify Governor J.B. Pritzker’s original “stay-at-home” order(s) remains in effect at this time, even after the governor extended the order to remain in effect until May 30, 2020, with some modifications:

  • Open houses are still prohibited
  • Showings for tenant occupied rental units are still prohibited
  • IF in-person showings are performed in a vacant or owner-occupied property, social distancing and cleansing methods must be observed.

In addition, under the extension order, masks must be worn in public by anyone over the age of two where social distancing measures cannot be observed beginning on May 1.

Effective at 5:00 PM on Saturday, March 21, 2020, Illinois is operating under a “Stay in Place” Orderso offices should give very serious consideration to stopping physical showings, in favor of seller-assisted videos, photos or virtual tours. Pursuant to DCEO guidance issued April 1, 2020, open houses are prohibited. Physical showings are limited to vacant and owner-occupied homes with showings scheduled in advance and not more than 4 people in attendance. Further, physical showings of tenant-occupied properties are prohibited during the pendency of the Order. 

If doing a physical showing while following the guidelines issued by DCEO, the state has mandated that citizens keep appropriate social distances to the extent possible, in order to slow down the spread of the virus. At this time, the state has mandated that citizens are prohibited from non-essential travel or contact with others, pursuant to the terms of this Order. 

FAQs for Landlords (Residential Rental Property Owners)

Generally, there would be no obligation to notify residents about another tenant’s health status. However, with this new virus and its high rate of contagion, the obligation to notify tenants if another tenant or staff member is diagnosed with COVID-19 may vary in accordance with individual lease terms, emerging public health mandates, and an potentially evolving industry standard.

If you become aware that a tenant has been diagnosed, be sure to review your lease agreement for provisions that may obligate you to notify tenants about security or safety risks present on the property. Stay alert for any governmental recommendations or mandates that could apply to your situation. The news on the contagious nature of the virus is constantly being updated and new mandates may evolve over time.

Even in the absence of a lease provision, if your tenant has provided you with notice that they have been diagnosed with

the virus, you may have some duty to use the information for the protection of your employees. You should take appropriate steps to make certain your employees are following the latest guidelines to avoid exposure to the virus. These are steps that can be taken without revealing the identity of the infected tenant.

Consider contacting the tenant who has been diagnosed with the disease to seek permission to divulge their identity to allow your tenants to assess their own exposure to the virus. In the absence of permission, or if there is any objection to notifying the community about the presence of the virus on the property, consider contacting an attorney for specific legal advice.

At this time, there is no official requirement that property owners or landlords notify building tenants about COVID-19 risks.

Over the upcoming weeks as more information is gathered, if a significant number of other owners/landlords in your geographic region are notifying tenants as a matter of course or more guidelines are published, then you may want to do so as well to avoid any claims that an emerging standard of care was not met.

At this time, the information that we have on the virus and how to avoid infection is constantly evolving. Keep abreast of new information from the CDC on the coronavirus and publicize the information to your employees and tenants.

Implement office policies and publicize the policies to your employees regarding the best ways to prevent both infection and spread of the disease.

If an employee expresses concern about their own health or safety, or that of their families, you should not require them to do any work that they believe puts their health in danger. It may be necessary to consult with your company attorney to address employment issues related to required labor and access to tenants’ space under these circumstances.

No. Pursuant to guidance issued on April 1, 2020 by DCEO, a tenant-occupied rental unit may not be physically shown during the pendency of the Governor’s Executive Order.   

No. The DCEO guidance says that no showings of tenant occupied units are allowed. There are no provisions for a waiver.  If a landlord and tenant wish to proceed, both should be referred to legal counsel for specific advice.

Neither the Executive Order addressing essential services, nor the DCEO guidance speak to inspections of owner or tenant occupied property.  Given that DCEO guidance says no “showings” of tenant occupied property are allowed, it is reasonable to infer that an inspection should not be allowed if tenant refuses entry.

Otherwise, if a tenant allowed an inspector in to perform an inspection, the inspector would need to have solid legal advice that this is necessary under the facts of the situation and is permissible under the Order.  IF this inspection takes place, all safety and social distancing measures would need to be observed.

Protect Your Investment

Download, customize and share this guide to help your at-risk homeowners struggling to meet loan obligations.

The brochure provides payment options to discuss with lenders, tips for avoiding scams, and encourages working with trusted professionals like REALTORS® and HUD-approved agencies.

FHFA Announces that Enterprises will Purchase Qualified Loans in Forbearance to Keep Lending Flowing

​Washington, D.C. – To support homeowners and mortgage lenders, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) is approving the purchase of certain single-family mortgages in forbearance that meet specific eligibility criteria by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (the Enterprises). “We are focused on keeping the mortgage market working for current and future homeowners [...]

Property ownership resources

How’s the housing market doing?

Illinois REALTORS® issues monthly housing market statistics reflecting median price and number of homes sold by Illinois, Chicagoland PMSA and county data.

Illinois REALTORS® issues monthly housing market statistics reflecting median price and number of homes sold by Illinois, Chicagoland PMSA and county data.

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Have a real estate dispute?

Illinois REALTORS®, can help! The association can answer basic questions and work to resolve transaction issues involving it’s members through the Ombudsman program.

Illinois REALTORS®, can help! The association can answer basic questions and work to resolve transaction issues involving it’s members through the Ombudsman program.

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Property ownership resources

How’s the housing market doing?

Illinois REALTORS® issues monthly housing market statistics reflecting median price and number of homes sold by Illinois, Chicagoland PMSA and county data.

Illinois REALTORS® issues monthly housing market statistics reflecting median price and number of homes sold by Illinois, Chicagoland PMSA and county data.

LEARN MORE

Have a real estate dispute?

Illinois REALTORS®, can help! The association can answer basic questions and work to resolve transaction issues involving it’s members through the Ombudsman program.

Illinois REALTORS®, can help! The association can answer basic questions and work to resolve transaction issues involving it’s members through the Ombudsman program.

LEARN MORE

HouseLogic.com is a site for homeowners who want smart solutions to enjoy, improve, and maintain their home; for buyers ready to find their happy place; and for sellers ready for their next chapter.

HouseLogic.com is a site for homeowners who want smart solutions to enjoy, improve, and maintain their home; for buyers ready to find their happy place; and for sellers ready for their next chapter.
Improve
HouseLogic.com is a site for homeowners who want smart solutions to enjoy, improve, and maintain their home; for buyers ready to find their happy place; and for sellers ready for their next chapter.
Your Money
HouseLogic.com is a site for homeowners who want smart solutions to enjoy, improve, and maintain their home; for buyers ready to find their happy place; and for sellers ready for their next chapter.
Buy & Sell

HouseLogic.com is a site for homeowners who want smart solutions to enjoy, improve, and maintain their home; for buyers ready to find their happy place; and for sellers ready for their next chapter.

HouseLogic.com is a site for homeowners who want smart solutions to enjoy, improve, and maintain their home; for buyers ready to find their happy place; and for sellers ready for their next chapter.
Improve
HouseLogic.com is a site for homeowners who want smart solutions to enjoy, improve, and maintain their home; for buyers ready to find their happy place; and for sellers ready for their next chapter.
Your Money
HouseLogic.com is a site for homeowners who want smart solutions to enjoy, improve, and maintain their home; for buyers ready to find their happy place; and for sellers ready for their next chapter.
Buy & Sell

Get the latest updates from the National Association of REALTORS® about public policy issues that can affect private property ownership.

Mortgage Tools

Buying or selling property? You need a professional to help you and an Illinois REALTOR® who can guide you through the transaction.

Find a REALTOR®

Get the latest updates from the National Association of REALTORS® about public policy issues that can affect private property ownership.

Mortgage Tools

Buying or selling property? You need a professional to help you and an Illinois REALTOR® who can guide you through the transaction.

Find a REALTOR®