The Illinois Condominium Property Act states what a Buyer needs to pay to the association when purchasing foreclosed property from a lender. A blog post I wrote some years ago talks about that. But the reality is, there’s a lot of confusion out there. A new bill introduced recently to the state House makes some proposals to help clarify the prospective buyer’s obligations. Specifically:1) Anyone who purchases a foreclosed condominium from the mortgagee of the condominium will be responsible for up to 9 months of regular back assessments.2) The association can include legal fees and court costs incurred because of the non-payment of assessments, but the TOTAL bill to the new buyer cannot be greater than 9 months of regular back assessments total.3) Any foreclosure sale notice must specifically state that anyone who buys the property from the mortgagee may be responsible for up to 9 months of back assessments.4) Any proposed buyer… read more →
According to RealtyTrac, in Illinois and around the country, foreclosures went down during the first quarter of 2013. While Illinois’ rate of foreclosure activity dropped nearly 5% from the first quarter of 2012, Illinois still ranks the third highest in foreclosure activity in the country. Only Florida and Nevada have more foreclosures than Illinois. Chicago, Cook County, and all of the collar counties, with the exception of DuPage County, had reduced foreclosure activity between January 1 and March 31, 2013. DuPage County’s foreclosure rate increased over both the first and last quarters of 2012. Nationally, 152,500 properties had foreclosures filed againt them in March of 2013. That’s actually a little less than the number of new foreclosures filed in February 2012, and about 23% less than the number of new foreclosures filed in March 2012.
In a recent case, OneWest Bank, FSB v. Hawthorne, 2013 IL App (5th) 110475 (February 4, 2013), the appellate court basically told a homeowner who was trying to appeal her foreclosure that she should not have ignored it for so long, and that she should have acted with diligence. The bank filed its foreclosure on April 5, 2010, and after trying and failing to reach Ms. Hawthorne directly, filed a motion for default judgment on June 21, 2010. Judgment was entered in the bank’s favor just three days later. That fall, Hawthorne file a motion, pro se, to have the judgment vacated. She hired an attorney to assist her a little later. However, neither she nor her attorney appeared in court for the hearing. The property was eventually sold at a public auction in April 2011, and the court entered the order approving the sale in May. Shortly thereafter, Hawthorne tried to get… read more →
The Illinois Property Tax Appeals Board is short-staffed, and as a result nearly 87,500 Illinois real estate tax payers have a long wait ahead of them. One of the auditors estimated two years to process the pending cases. In 2012 alone, 42,871 appeals were filed, nearly a 36% increase over 2011, and a whopping 226% increase since 2002, when the agency had twice as much staff as it does now. Back then, applications were fewer, and despite the larger staff, it still took a while to process files, though not as long as it does now. The state legislature has set aside more funds to increase the staff at the appeals board, but even so, the staff won’t reach 2002 levels. So if your tax appeal is not getting processed, it’s probably sitting in a pile somewhere with 42,000 other tax appeals in the same boat. It will get processed eventually, so sit tight.
A recent case, NAV Bank . LaSalle Bank, N.A., 2013 IL App (1st) 121147 (January 22, 2013) Cook Co.,1st Div. found that it was fair to sell a half-interest in a home at a forced sale at a price significantly below half of the market value of the home.NAV Bank revolves around a dispute over a single family home that began in the 1990s. After much litigation, one family, the Toms, won against the other party, Adeline Moy. Ms. Moy has since passed, and the Toms attempted to enforce the judgment against Ms. Moy by going after her interest in the home that she and her husband, Mr. Moy, owned.After much maneuvering, Ms. Moy’s half-interest in the home was sold. The Toms purchased the half-interest for $20,000, even though the house appraised at $280,000. No one else placed a bid. Mr. Moy asked the court to set aside the sale on the grounds that the sales price was too low.In the… read more →
If you are involved in community association management, or if you are a member of or on the board of a community association looking for a new manager for your association, you need to know that effective October 2012, community association managers in Illinois must be licensed under the Community Association Manager License and Disciplinary Act (CAMLDA). Community association managers are not the same as property managers. To fall under the purview of the CAMLDA, a manager must be managing one or more community associations. A community association is a group that 1) individual unit owners must be a part of as a result of their ownership in a condominium association or other such homeowners’ association, and 2) the association must have a right to impose assessments on unit owners. Moreover, a community association manager may have a lot of responsibilities that a property manager doesn’t have, such as collecting… read more →
If you own or are buying a condominium, you may come across the term “special assessment”. What does that mean? Well, there’s a regular assessment, usually monthly, that you are paying towards the association’s general maintenance expenses. But when there’s a large scale improvement or repair that wasn’t budgeted for, the association needs to get the money from somewhere. So what do they do? They assess it to the homeowners. It’s not a part of the regular expense; hence, it’s “special”. Often when you see a special assessment, it’s for a big-ticket items like a roof repair, tuckpointing, sudden damage to the building, or some other large renovation or repair. Special assessments can be a few dollars or thousands of dollars, so make sure you do your diligence if you’re buying . A Section 22.1 Disclosure is key to help you determine what costs you may be looking at in the… read more →
If you are buying residential property, you are probably aware that you should get a home inspection. This means you should hire a licensed home inspector to check out the house for you. Typically this is done within the first 5 days after the contract is signed by the seller. If you are not happy with the way the inspection turns out, your attorney can cancel the transaction or try to negotiate the repairs or a credit for you. Keep in mind, however, that a typical home inspection is not meant to cover cosmetic items. If you are walking through the house and notice chipped tiles or peeling paint, take all of that into account when you make your initial offer. The purpose of the inspection is to make sure that the home’s structure and systems are in good condition, not to find peeling wallpaper or dirty carpets. Make sure your home… read more →
According to data recently released by Zillow, Chicago was the best buyer’s market in the United States in the third and fourth quarters of 2012. Zillow studied 142 metro areas across the country, and found that buyers in Chicago have far stronger bargaining positions than sellers do. Cleveland came in second place, and the top five were rounded out by by Philadelphia, Cincinnati, and New York City. The top three seller’s markets, meaning metro areas in which the sellers had greater bargaining power than the buyers, were all in California: San Jose, San Francisco, and Sacramento. The top five were rounded out by Las Vegas and Phoenix. The formula Zillow used to determine the best markets had three components: 1) A comparison of how much a house sells for as compared to its last listed price; 2) the amount of time a house stays on the market; and 3) the… read more →
Landlords and tenants often end up fighting, and sometimes the arguments continue well past the end of the tenancy. You may have had a bad landlord, or a bad tenant, but the fact is, not all landlords are bad, and neither are all tenants. Periodically the state legislature makes little tweaks to various laws to acknowledge either or both of these assertions. Recently, for example, the legislature tweaked the Security Deposit Return Act. Pursuant to this Act, the landlord must give the tenant an itemized list of the damage the tenant caused to the landlord’s property within 30 days after the tenant leaves, along with the cost (either actual or estimated) of repairing the same. This notice must be given to the tenant personally, or at his last known address. Effective January 1, 2013, however, landlords have the option of sending this notice via electronic mail to an e-mail address… read more →