chicago-condos pcherry on 05 Jul 2011 10:20 am

Your Rights As A Tenant In A Foreclosed Building

July 5, 2011 - Yesterday we told you that a report from the Lawyers’ Committee for Better Housing that was highlighted in the Tribune found that 17,467 Chicago apartments were hit with foreclosure last year (2010). Today we’ll talk about some of the reasons why Chicago foreclosures happen and what you can do if it happens to your building.

The federal Home Affordable Modification Program is a good way for owners of Chicago condos who are in danger of foreclosure to get their loans modified, monthly payments lowered and sometimes even interest reduced. But as the article and report point out, investor-owned units that are not owner-occupied can’t apply for this program.

Another reason that an apartment building could fall into foreclosure is because when a neighborhood becomes littered with foreclosed buildings, fewer investors are willing to come forward and take over a loan or buy the building. They are usually afraid that tenants won’t rent an apartment in what looks like a declining neighborhood.

The last point the report made is that some lenders and property managers will try to force out tenants in buildings under foreclosure. That just causes the building to be less attractive to a potential investor.

If you are leasing an apartment in a building facing foreclosure, you do have rights. Under the Illinois Mortgage Foreclosure Law, as long as you are up to date on your rent you have a right to have the terms of your lease honored or at the very least have 90 day’s notice before you have to move. The law also requires that renters be notified in writing if their apartment building changes ownership. And these foreclosure rules apply to both Chicago apartments and single-family homes that are being leased.

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