Proposals irk real estate agents

CHICAGO SUN-TIMES Friday, September 28,1984
Michelle Stevens

North Side real estate agents are expressing disappointment with two proposals that, they say, restrict Chicago property owners.

The agents weren’t too happy with an ordinance introduced by Ald. Bernard L. Stone (50th) that restricts outdoor advertising, including ”For Sale” signs.

They weren’t pleased, either, with the Tenants Rights Ordinance proposed by Ald. David D. Orr (49th).

About 100 members of the North Side Real Estate Board aired their gripes recently at a first-of-its-kind meeting with the lawmakers.

“It was our chance to become informed about the, ordinances, ask questions and express concerns,” said Michael J. Manno, president of the board, which represents more than 2,000 members.

Manno contended that “For Sale” signs are useful selling tools for property owners and are helpful to prospective buyers who drive through the neighborhoods in search of a house. “Property owners’ constitutional rights are violated” by being barred from posting the signs, Manno said.

Stone, who has been a real estate broker for 33 years disagreed.


Stone said homeowners can continue to place “For Sale” signs in their windows or on their doors. “Besides,” he said, “signs don’t sell homes, people do. If signs sold houses, people wouldn’t need brokers.”

Orr’s proposed tenant-rights ordinance would allow renters to make repairs and deduct the amount from their rent. In an effort to gain more owner support, he amended the proposal just before the recent meeting to exempt owner-occupied buildings with four apartments or fewer and spell out the rights of landlords.

Orr said some of the real estate agents “really disagreed” with the ordinance, “but both sides recognize that there is a common problem with bad landlords and bad tenants.

“They questioned my proposed solution, but they believe we are sincere about dealing with the problem,” Orr said.

He has agreed to meet with a committee of the real estate agents to discuss the ordinance and other landlord-tenant problem’s.
Manno said agents will study Orr’s amendments and be prepared to present testimony at the next City Council committee hearing, which was continued until Oct. 4.

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