In the News

News from around the web on issues affecting renters.

Veterans get protected status in Chicago's fair housing ordinances

Veterans get protected status in Chicago's fair housing ordinances

Veterans, active military personnel, reservists and National Guard members would become the 17th “protected class” in Chicago’s Fair Housing and Human Rights ordinances, under a mayoral crackdown advanced Tuesday.

The City Council’s Committee on Human Relations approved Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s ordinance, which is intended to prevent what a top mayoral aide described as a disturbing trend of discrimination against the military in the areas of housing and employment.

Forced Out

Forced Out: The New Yorker

Arleen Beale’s latest eviction began with a snowball fight. It was January of 2008, and Milwaukee was experiencing its snowiest winter on record. Arleen’s son Jori and his cousin were cutting up, packing powder tight and taking aim at the passing cars on Arthur Avenue. One jerked to a stop, and a man jumped out, chasing the boys to Arleen’s apartment, where he broke down the door with a few kicks. When the landlord found out about the property damage, she decided to evict. Arleen had been there with her sons—Jori was thirteen, Jafaris five—for eight months.

Full Circle Communities preserves first SRO apartment building under Chicago’s ordinance

Full Circle Communities, a Chicagoland non-profit, has acquired a 34-unit Single Room Occupancy (SRO) apartment building in the Logan Square neighborhood, preserving much needed affordable housing in a rapidly gentrifying real estate market.

How Much is Rent in Chicago? A Neighborhood Look

How Much is Rent in Chicago? A Neighborhood Look: DNA Info

Median rents for one-bedroom and two-bedroom units in the city are both up in January compared to a year ago, according to a new report. The report, from Zumper, put the median rent in Chicago for a one-bedroom at $1,970 in January, up 10.7 percent from January of 2015. Two-bedroom median rents in Chicago were $2,630, up 8.2 percent from the previous January, Zillow said. The Near North Side had the most expensive rent for both one-bedroom and two-bedroom units: $2,260 and $3,180 respectively.

You have the right to request your consumer reports

You have the right to request your consumer reports: Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

Like many consumers, you may be aware that a credit report provides you with a useful summary of your credit history. What you may not be aware of is where and how to actually request your credit report, and what your rights are with your consumer reports.

Every year, we update and publish a list of consumer reporting companies. Today, we present you with the 2016 edition of our list, which includes many great features.

An Advocate's Role

An Advocate's Role: Affordable Housing News

Lawyers' Committee for Better Housing (LCBH) provides free legal and supportive services for lower income renters while advocating for the rights of all renters to live in safe, decent, and affordable housing. LCBH's Building Advocacy Program provides legal assistance to tenant unions and represents renters in Chicago's building courts in order to improve building conditions.

CHA Collecting Millions In Tax Dollars For Mostly Vacant Housing Complex: CBS

Prime Chicago river-front real estate with a rundown housing complex costs all taxpayers millions of dollars a year, even though most of the complex sits empty. CBS 2’s Dave Savini investigates the city’s handling of your money.

It is Lathrop Homes that has housing advocates alleging misuse of taxpayers’ dollars. The Chicago Housing Authority (CHA) gets $10,000 per apartment, even when the units are rundown and vacant which means, for the 925-unit Lathrop Homes, the CHA gets more than nine million federal tax dollars a year.

What 2016 will do to your checkbook: Rent, food, gas, raises

What 2016 will do to your checkbook: Rent, food, gas, raises: Chicago Tribune

Wondering how you will fare financially in 2016? Below are what experts think next year will hold for financial matters close to home: Raises, rent, gas, food and health.

WILL MY RENT GO UP?

Yes, most likely.

It's been a tough few years for U.S. renters because demand has outpaced supply, causing prices to rise.

BMO Harris Bank Skirts City Law, Plays Scrooge in Englewood

In a blatant attempt to beat the clock on Chicago’s Keep Chicago Renting Ordinance (KRCO), BMO Harris Bank has caused the eviction of five families from their homes in the 7200 block of South Lowe in Englewood just as they were preparing for the Holidays. The tenants unfortunately lived in a building being foreclosed on by BMO. When the boiler in the building went out, neither the bank nor the owner would step in to get it fixed. As a direct result of that decision, the City ordered the building vacated due to "dangerous and hazardous conditions."

It's Not Just the Poor Who Can't Make Rent

It's Not Just the Poor Who Can't Make Rent: NBC

It's not just low-income Americans who struggle to pay their rent every month, or find an affordable place to live when they move. New research from Harvard says that even renters with annual incomes of $45,000 face unaffordable rents in many cities, with potentially far-reaching effects.