In the News

News from around the web on issues affecting renters.

Renters Unite to Demand Affordable Housing

Renters Unite to Demand Affordable Housing, Truthout

The lack of affordable housing across the country has gained increasing attention in recent months. A report released earlier this year by the personal finance website SmartAsset found that in 12 of the top 15 US cities, rents had increased from 2015 to 2016. In some places, rent prices skyrocketed; San Francisco, Seattle and Miami all had increases of over 7 percent. In Los Angeles, average rental rates went up 17 percent.

Proposed change would weaken Tenants Bill of Rights

Proposed change would weaken Tenants Bill of Rights:Chicago Reporter

Thirty years after passage of the Residential Landlord Tenant Ordinance, advocates are celebrating its success — and warning that a two-word change being pushed by the realtors could seriously weaken the measure.

Strict landlord-tenant law marks 30th year

Strict landlord-tenant law marks 30th year: Chicago Daily Law Bulletin

A city ordinance aimed at bolstering tenant’s rights against their landlords turns 30 this month.

Tenants groups across the city found the milestone for the Residential Landlords and Tenants Ordinance to be a cause for celebration — even as they mount a defense against a landlord-driven effort at City Hall to lessen penalties against noncompliant property owners.

Lawrence Davis Wood, the director of LAF’s housing practice group, said on Thursday — the formal anniversary date — that the ordinance was “an incredibly important document.”

Residents of a Bridgeport SRO are told they have until the end of the day to get out: Chicago Reader

The four-story brick building tucked under the Stevenson Expressway at 3022 S. Archer is far from an ideal place to live. The hallways are narrow and dank, the rooms are small, stuffy, and mostly windowless. Each floor has two bathrooms, but some don't work.

Logan Residents Being Evicted From 'Micro Apartment' Site Vow To Fight: DNA Info

Another large-scale apartment development is preparing to break ground in Logan Square, but residents who live in apartments on the site are preparing to fight the project.

Developers behind a planned "micro apartment" complex at 2328 N. California Ave. are seeking to break ground by the end of the year to make way for 138 apartments.

There are six families that live in apartments on the site that have received 30 day eviction notices ahead of the planned demolition of the buildings on site.

There are currently apartments and a car wash on the site.

Moore: Whole Foods, Obama Center raise hopes, questions

Moore: Whole Foods, Obama Center raise hopes, questions: Chicago Sun-Times

Two splashy projects on the horizon have the potential to help transform swaths of the South Side of Chicago: Whole Foods and the Obama Presidential Center.

When Whole Foods three years ago announced it would open a market in the Englewood neighborhood by 2016, the news was immediately met with skepticism, shock and racism. The central question was: why would an expensive grocer open in a low-income black food desert? And for some, a new Whole Foods amounted to gentrification and an eviction notice for residents.

Got an Affordable Housing Crisis? Save the Cheap Housing You Already Have: Atlantic CityLab

How widespread is the affordable housing crisis? Well, not a single county in the U.S. has enough affordable units to go around.

Constructing more housing is important (albeit not easy), but we can’t just build our way out of the problem: In some cases, the cheaper, better option is to simply preserve the existing affordable housing stock, instead of allowing it to get swept away by development.

Pilsen's Only SRO, Lugo Hotel, Will Be Saved By Resurrection Project

Pilsen's only single room occupancy hotel will be saved, helping dozens of low-income residents stay in the rapidly-changing neighborhood.

The Resurrection Project has purchased the three-story Lugo Hotel, a longtime SRO at 2008 S. Blue Island Ave., the Pilsen non-profit announced this month. The acquisition will help current Lugo Hotel residents, many of whom are on fixed incomes, stay in the building.

Little Village Tenants Protest Evictions: 'We Will Not Be Gentrified!': DNA Info

Seven Little Village families are facing eviction from their apartment building on 2622 W. Cermak Road after it was purchased by real estate investor, Barnett Capital LTD, in April. During a protest on Tuesday, the tenants unfurled banners from their windows that read: "Barnett Capital Stop the Eviction!" They chanted, “La Villita is unified, we will not be gentrified.” The residents formed the Cermak Tenants Union to attempt to negotiate terms with the new owner, but they insist they’ve been unable to reach the company.

Brown: Northwest Side community group can afford to take a bow

Brown: Northwest Side community group can afford to take a bow: Chicago Sun-Times

Two years after launching an audacious plan to stem the loss of affordable housing by buying up foreclosed properties, a Northwest Side community group is declaring victory.

Communities United, formerly known as the Albany Park Neighborhood Council before it expanded its turf, expects to close later this month on the purchase of its 19th small apartment building.