WBEZ | mortgage lenders http://www.wbez.org/tags/mortgage-lenders Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Twice hit with foreclosure, family looks to proposed renter protections http://www.wbez.org/news/twice-hit-foreclosure-family-looks-proposed-renter-protections-107538 <p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/HildaQuiloCROP.jpg" style="margin: 4px 0px 0px 0px; float: right; height: 222px; width: 300px;" title="If the Chicago City Council enacts the ordinance Wednesday, Hilda Quilo and her family could keep their home. (WBEZ/Chip Mitchell)" />The three-bedroom house where Hilda Quilo and her husband thought they would be raising their three children stands on a quiet, leafy block in Chicago&rsquo;s Logan Square neighborhood.</p><p>They bought the place in 1999. Quilo, 40, said everything was fine until the recession, when her husband&rsquo;s construction work dried up and they couldn&rsquo;t keep up on the mortgage payments.</p><p>&ldquo;We wanted to refinance and we asked the bank to help us,&rdquo; Quilo said in Spanish.</p><p>All they got was an eviction notice. So, after 10 years in the house, the family had to move out.</p><p>It turns out their foreclosure troubles were just beginning. The family went on the rental market and eventually found another house just down the block. They signed a lease in 2010 and, Quilo said, always paid their rent.</p><p>This January, however, the family started getting bank and court notices in the mail. And the landlord went missing. &ldquo;We discovered that this house was in foreclosure too,&rdquo; Quilo said.</p><p>This time, Quilo and the rest of the family were even more helpless because they were just renters. &ldquo;We&rsquo;re expecting an eviction notice,&rdquo; Quilo said. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s an uncertainty that keeps me from sleeping.&rdquo;</p><p>The Quilos are not the first Chicago family to be hit twice by the foreclosure crisis, tenant advocates say. &ldquo;Hilda&rsquo;s story is a common experience for many people who go from being a homeowner to a tenant,&rdquo; said Marcelo Ferrer, foreclosure-prevention director of the Logan Square Neighborhood Association.</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Trausch.jpg" style="float: right; height: 259px; width: 250px;" title="James E. Trausch, general counsel of the Illinois Mortgage Bankers Association, calls the measure ‘a backdoor attempt at rent control.’ (WBEZ/Chip Mitchell)" />When landlords face foreclosure, renters like the Quilos need some extra help, Ferrer said. &ldquo;It can&rsquo;t just be one person versus the bank.&rdquo;</p><p>The help Ferrer has in mind is <a href="http://chicago.legistar.com/LegislationDetail.aspx?ID=1156573&amp;GUID=4F709387-96EE-4BD0-9950-C692DE714378&amp;Options=Advanced&amp;Search=" target="_blank">Keep Chicago Renting</a>, a proposed ordinance the City Council could approve Wednesday. The measure would require a bank that forecloses on a rental building to let the tenants stay, and to cap the rent, until selling the property. As an alternative, the bank could pay the tenants a relocation fee of $10,600 per unit.</p><p>An earlier version of the proposal, introduced by Ald. Richard Mell (33rd) last July, would have banned post-foreclosure evictions outright except under narrow circumstances such as failure to pay rent.</p><p>Mayor Rahm Emanuel&rsquo;s administration helped develop the current version and says the measure would keep such units occupied.</p><p>Mell agrees. &ldquo;All I want is the banks to say, &lsquo;Hey, let&rsquo;s figure out how we&rsquo;re going to take some haircuts on some of these properties and put them back on the market, not just sit on it.&rsquo; &rdquo; the alderman said during a hearing on the measure last month.</p><p>The implications are huge. A <a href="http://lcbh.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/07/LCBH-Three-Year-Impact-Assessment-Apartment-Building-Foreclosures-and-the-Depletion-of-Rental-Housing-in-Chicago.pdf" target="_blank">study by the Lawyers&rsquo; Committee for Better Housing</a>, another backer of the legislation, found almost 52,000 Chicago rental units went into foreclosure between 2009 and 2011.</p><p>But banks, landlords and realtors are trying to put brakes on the measure. &ldquo;I think it&rsquo;s a backdoor attempt at rent control,&rdquo; said James E. Trausch, general counsel of the Illinois Mortgage Bankers Association, pointing to an <a href="http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=748&amp;ChapterID=11" target="_blank">Illinois statute that prohibits</a> local governments from setting up rent control.</p><p>The proposed ordinance would also discourage lending in the city, Trausch said. &ldquo;And that&rsquo;s always a bad thing. The [fewer] lenders you have loaning money, the less competition they have to offer the best rates.&rdquo;</p><p>Asked what he would tell renters such as Hilda Quilo, Trausch does not hesitate.</p><p>&ldquo;I&rsquo;d say, pick her landlords better,&rdquo; Trausch answered. &ldquo;A tenant who wants to rent a unit can go into the public records and see if there has been a foreclosure filed. And foreclosures take two years so you have ample notice that you shouldn&rsquo;t be renting this property.&rdquo;</p><p>That advice is cold comfort for the Quilo family.</p><p>&ldquo;My kids have grown up on this block,&rdquo; Quilo said. And that&rsquo;s where she wants them to stay. So she&rsquo;s planning to be at Wednesday&rsquo;s City Council meeting.</p><p>Quilo said the outcome could keep her family from losing its home again because of foreclosure.</p><p><em><a href="“http://www.wbez.org/users/cmitchell-0”" target="_blank">Chip Mitchell</a> is WBEZ&rsquo;s West Side bureau reporter. Follow him on Twitter <a href="“https://twitter.com/ChipMitchell1”" target="_blank">@ChipMitchell1</a> and <a href="“https://twitter.com/WBEZoutloud”" target="_blank">@WBEZoutloud</a>, and connect with him through <a href="“https://www.facebook.com/chipmitchell1”" target="_blank">Facebook</a> and <a href="“http://www.linkedin.com/in/ChipMitchell1”" target="_blank">LinkedIn</a>.</em></p></p> Wed, 05 Jun 2013 07:49:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/twice-hit-foreclosure-family-looks-proposed-renter-protections-107538 City Council panel OKs protections for renters after foreclosure http://www.wbez.org/news/city-council-panel-oks-protections-renters-after-foreclosure-106941 <p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Abandoned.jpg" style="margin: 4px 0px 0px 0px; float: right; height: 225px; width: 300px;" title="Abandoned rental buildings like this one hurt Englewood, a neighborhood on Chicago’s South Side. (Photo courtesy of Action Now)" />A proposal aimed at protecting renters in foreclosed buildings won the backing of a Chicago City Council panel on Wednesday, but not without a few sparks.</p><p>The council&rsquo;s Housing and Real Estate Committee passed the measure in a voice vote after about 90 minutes of debate.</p><p>Ald. Matthew O&rsquo;Shea (19th), who said he supported an earlier version, decried provisions that would require the foreclosing banks to pay tenants a &ldquo;relocation assistance&rdquo; fee of $12,000 per unit or offer them rent-controlled leases until selling the building.</p><p>&ldquo;Making foreclosed properties considerably more expensive to hold will further drive down their price at sale or auction,&rdquo; said O&rsquo;Shea, the only alderman who voiced opposition to the measure. &ldquo;We are in essence reducing the value of all surrounding properties.&rdquo;</p><p>Other aldermen, including Walter Burnett Jr. (27th), said what&rsquo;s dragging down home prices in their wards is the abandonment of properties after foreclosure. &ldquo;How many people are sitting in their house every night, worried about if there&rsquo;s going to be a fire next door to them because [banks] made the people who were renting there move out and leave the building vacant?&rdquo; Burnett asked.</p><p>The earlier version, introduced by Ald. Richard Mell (33rd) and dubbed &ldquo;Keep Chicago Renting,&rdquo; would have banned post-foreclosure evictions except under limited circumstances such as the tenant&rsquo;s failure to pay rent.</p><p>Mayor Rahm Emanuel&rsquo;s administration said it agreed with the goal &mdash; keeping renters in their homes &mdash; but raised legal concerns. <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/advocates-push-emanuel-protect-renters-foreclosed-units-106197">Months of negotiations between city officials and tenant advocates</a> led to the version now in the council.</p><p>Before the hearing, members of 11 community groups behind the measure donned orange T-shirts and rallied outside the council chambers. The groups included the Lawyers&rsquo; Committee for Better Housing, which brandished new research showing crime in abandoned buildings and vacant lots is up nearly 48 percent since 2005.</p><p>At the rally, Mell responded to an Illinois Mortgage Bankers Association <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/mortgage-bankers-slam-proposed-tenant-protections-106917">claim that the ordinance would lead to litigation</a> and congest a court system already struggling with a huge backlog of foreclosure cases. &ldquo;Why would it clog it up if the banks go along with it?&rdquo; Mell asked.</p><p>The most detailed testimony against the plan came from Brian Bernardoni, senior director of government affairs and public policy for the Chicago Association of Realtors. &ldquo;This ordinance is bad for the market and bad for transfer-tax revenues,&rdquo; he said.</p><p>Bernardoni claimed that forcing lenders to renew leases would amount to an unconstitutional &ldquo;taking,&rdquo; a legal term describing government acquisition of private property without fair compensation. &ldquo;Landlords have the right to evict a tenant at the expiration of a lease,&rdquo; he said.</p><p>An Emanuel administration representative at the hearing said Chicago officials considered such claims while developing the legislation. &ldquo;If that&rsquo;s the lawsuit, we&rsquo;ll take that one on,&rdquo; Rose Kelly, senior counsel in the city&rsquo;s law department, told the aldermen.</p><p>No mortgage lenders addressed the committee but some voiced opposition to the measure Wednesday.</p><p>&ldquo;If a lender is compelled by the ordinance to provide relocation assistance of $12,000, it may opt to release its lien and walk away from the property &mdash; thereby causing more, not less, building abandonments,&rdquo; James E. Trausch, general counsel of the mortgage bankers association, wrote Wednesday in a message to WBEZ.</p><p>&ldquo;Chicago will become an unfriendly lending environment as more lenders simply pass on lending in the city because it is not worthy of the investment,&rdquo; Trausch wrote.</p><p>The Illinois Bankers Association and the Chicagoland Apartment Association also indicated opposition.</p><p>Ald. Ray Suárez (31st), the committee chairman, said he would not refer the measure to the full council until June 5. He said the delay would allow more time to hear from the legislation&rsquo;s opponents.</p><p><em><a href="“http://www.wbez.org/users/cmitchell-0”">Chip Mitchell</a> is WBEZ&rsquo;s West Side bureau reporter. Follow him on Twitter <a href="“https://twitter.com/ChipMitchell1”">@ChipMitchell1</a> and <a href="“https://twitter.com/WBEZoutloud”">@WBEZoutloud</a>, and connect with him through <a href="“https://www.facebook.com/chipmitchell1”">Facebook</a> and <a href="“http://www.linkedin.com/in/ChipMitchell1”">LinkedIn</a>.</em></p></p> Wed, 01 May 2013 18:08:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/city-council-panel-oks-protections-renters-after-foreclosure-106941 Mortgage bankers slam proposed tenant protections http://www.wbez.org/news/mortgage-bankers-slam-proposed-tenant-protections-106917 <p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/FronCROP.jpg" style="margin: 4px 0px 0px 0px; float: right; height: 261px; width: 300px;" title="But Patricia Fron of the Lawyers’ Committee for Better Housing says the plan would help keep buildings occupied and discourage crime. (WBEZ/Chip Mitchell)" />A group of mortgage lenders has a warning about a proposed ordinance that Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel&rsquo;s administration helped craft to protect tenants of foreclosed buildings. The Illinois Mortgage Bankers Association says the plan, set for a City Council hearing on Wednesday, would clog courts already struggling with a huge backlog of foreclosure cases.</p><p>&ldquo;Illinois has the second-largest backlog in the nation,&rdquo; said Robert Emanuel (no relation to the mayor), a Chicago attorney who serves on the association&rsquo;s executive committee. &ldquo;This is going to add either a new form of litigation or it&rsquo;s going to complicate existing foreclosures.&rdquo;</p><p>The proposal, called the &ldquo;Protecting Tenants in Foreclosed Rental Property Ordinance,&rdquo; would require banks to pay a $12,000 &ldquo;relocation assistance&rdquo; fee to renters evicted after a repossession or offer them rent-controlled leases until selling the building. The ordinance would apply to tenants in buildings large or small, even single-family houses.</p><p>An earlier version of the proposal, known as &ldquo;Keep Chicago Renting&rdquo; and introduced by Ald. Richard Mell (33rd) last July, would have banned post-foreclosure evictions except under limited circumstances such as the tenant&rsquo;s failure to pay rent.</p><p>The goal is to keep renters in their homes and keep the buildings from standing vacant and breeding crime. On Tuesday, the Chicago-based Lawyers&rsquo; Committee for Better Housing released a study based on city data that showed crime in abandoned buildings and vacant lots is up nearly 48&nbsp;percent since 2005.</p><p>&ldquo;At a time when overall crime rates have been decreasing in the city of Chicago, crimes occurring within abandoned properties are actually increasing,&rdquo; said Patricia Fron, the committee&rsquo;s building programs administrator.</p><p>Tenant advocates and city officials negotiated for months before agreeing on the proposal&rsquo;s main elements in early April. The council&rsquo;s Housing Committee is holding the hearing Wednesday morning.</p><p>The mortgage bankers association says it&rsquo;s planning to send representatives to the hearing. The group says the proposal should not include single-family homes and says the blame for abandoned buildings belongs less to banks than to investors who are out to buy and sell properties for quick gain &mdash; a practice known as flipping. The bankers say the tenant ordinance would make Chicago less attractive for lending and increase costs for borrowers.</p><p>Officials of the Illinois Bankers Association, another group likely to oppose the proposal, did not return calls or messages about it Tuesday.</p><p><em><a href="http://www.wbez.org/users/cmitchell-0">Chip Mitchell</a> is WBEZ&rsquo;s West Side bureau reporter. Follow him on Twitter <a href="https://twitter.com/ChipMitchell1">@ChipMitchell1</a> and <a href="https://twitter.com/WBEZoutloud">@WBEZoutloud</a>, and connect with him through <a href="https://www.facebook.com/chipmitchell1">Facebook</a> and <a href="http://www.linkedin.com/in/ChipMitchell1">LinkedIn</a>.</em></p></p> Wed, 01 May 2013 00:42:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/mortgage-bankers-slam-proposed-tenant-protections-106917