CHICAGO — Illinois Realtors, a real estate advocacy group, has stepped out to oppose Illinois state legislation to repeal the state's Rent Control Preemption Act, a 1997 law prohibiting cities and other local governments from enacting rent control measures.

According to Illinois Realtors, supporters of the bill, labeled HB 2430 in the Illinois General Assembly, have said they want the city of Chicago to be allowed to impose rent control. However, the proposed law would also allow all home units in the state to impose rent control, the group said.

“Rent control can cause a number of unintended consequences," Jon K. Broadbooks, spokesman for Illinois Realtors, told the Cook County Record. "Because the policy sets thresholds for what a property owner can charge for rent, it means there would be much less of an incentive to invest in real estate. Overall, the policy could create more bureaucracy, more regulation and could actually hurt property values. This, in turn, would have negative budgetary impacts for the municipality implementing rent control.”

Broadbooks said if there is only so much money a property owner can get from a lease, there is a greater chance of issues with property upkeep that will work against a renter’s interests.

Other concerns include a potential decrease in property values and the bureaucracy that such a mandate would require.

“Under current state law, rent control is not allowed in Illinois," he said "This act, if enacted, would allow home rule units to have rent control if they wish. This means additional regulation and bureaucracy, more red tape for property owners and it just adds to the narrative that Illinois is too expensive a place to live and work. If passed, you could have a patchwork of municipalities with and without rent control. That would be confusing to a renter and could pit one community against another in efforts to attract residents."

Broadbooks said the city of Chicago has not publicly supported rent control.

HB 2430 has been assigned to the Real and Personal Property subcommittee.  

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City of Chicago
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