February 22, 2019 General Info

Where Do 2019 Mayoral Candidates Stand on Rent Control for Chicago Apartments?

The 2019 Chicago mayoral election draws closer, and while there’s no clear front-runner in the race, there are several leading topics that punctuate the decision facing Chicago voters at the ballot box. One of the topics that a new mayor will have to face in the coming months is the discussion around rent control in Chicago apartments. 

The State of Rent Control in Illinois

There has been a statewide ban on rent control, officially known as the Rent Control Preemption Act, in Illinois since 1997. Now, even if Chicago’s new mayor is opposed to the law and wants to implement rent control in the city, they wouldn’t be able to do so single handedly. The law prohibits municipalities from enacting, maintaining or enforcing measures that control the amount of rent charged for leasing residential property. For more on the law, check out our primer on rent control for Chicago apartments.

The most vocal proponent for repealing the statewide ban on rent control is State Representative Will Guzzardi, whose district includes the rapidly gentrifying neighborhood of Logan Square. The grassroots effort to overturn the existing law, known as “Lift the Ban” among local organizers, has received vocal support from other prominent players in Illinois politics. Governor J.B. Pritzker campaigned on a progressive platform that called for repealing the law in 2018. 

Do Governor Pritzker and Rep. Guzzardi have any allies in the wide-open field of people running for mayor in 2019? The Chicago Association of Realtors held a roundtable forum in the weeks leading up to the initial vote and quizzed the candidates on their stance regarding rent control. 

Chicago Mayoral Candidates' Stance on Rent Control

The flyer from CAR outlines the position from each candidate who participated in the survey on a range of topics, from rent control for Chicago apartments to tax rates on affordable housing development. The CAR is opposed to enacting rent control for Chicago apartments. Their position favors market forces to manage rental prices and the organization supports a “forward-thinking, pro-development approach that would keep the existing market healthy and spur new affordable housing development.”

Chicago Association of Realtor's flyer outlining stance on 2019 mayoral candidates regarding rent control for Chicago apartments

In case you have trouble viewing the flyer from CAR, here are each of the candidates’ positions on rent control for Chicago apartments:

Opposes Rent Control:
Paul Vallas
Willie Wilson
Garry McCarthy
Gery Chico
Susana Mendoza

Unopposed to Rent Control:
Toni Preckwinkle
La Shawn Ford

Bill Daley

Did Not Answer:
Lori Lightfoot
Jerry Joyce, Jr.
Amara Enyia
Neal Sales-Griffin
Bob Fioretti
John Kozlar

Domu is neither in favor of nor opposed to rent control for Chicago apartments. It’s obviously important to keep up to speed on the debate, and as Chicago’s largest local apartment listing website, Domu will work to keep landlords and renters informed on updates to this central issue.

More reading:

Is there rent control for Chicago apartments?