DuPage County Landord-Tenant Dispute LawyerLandlords wear many hats and juggle countless responsibilities. For many landlords and property owners, one of the worst aspects of the job is handling tenant evictions. It is an unpleasant process that nobody wants to face, and the global pandemic has presented landlords with even more challenges when it comes to evicting tenants.

Although most eviction moratoriums and other covid-related restrictions have been lifted by now, the pandemic changed the nature of the landlord-tenant relationship. Many tenants are set on doing everything they can to avoid meeting the terms of their lease agreements while remaining in their homes. If you are struggling to evict a tenant, it is important to understand the current eviction process in order to ensure that you are following the law and protecting your rights as a landlord.

Cook County, Illinois Eviction Process

Most evictions occur because a tenant is not paying rent or otherwise violated the lease. In Illinois, evictions are a judicial process. The first step is serving a notice to the tenant. If the eviction notice is based on failure to pay rent, the notice is a 5-day notice. If the tenant is in violation of the lease agreement, it is a 10-day notice. Month-to-month renters must be served with a Notice of Termination of Periodic Tenancy. The type of notice you will need to provide depends on many different factors, including the Illinois county where the rental property is located. This is why many landlords work with real estate lawyers to ensure they are following the current law correctly.


DuPage County Commercial Real Estate LawyerPurchasing a commercial property represents an exciting opportunity for any investor. If you own commercial real estate, you know this firsthand. Whether you plan to use the commercial property yourself or lease it out to another party, you likely have ambitious plans for the future. Unfortunately, many commercial real estate investors find their plans derailed by excessive property tax obligations.

In this blog, we will discuss the legal options available to commercial real estate owners in this predicament. It may be possible to lower your tax burden by filing an appeal or taking advantage of certain tax incentives.

How to Appeal a Property Tax Assessment for a Commercial Property

An old saying states that the only things certain in life are death and taxes. Still, your tax bill should not be so demanding that it ruins your future ambitions. If you think a commercial property tax assessment is too high, you should consider filing an appeal with the local taxing authority. The exact process for appealing depends on your jurisdiction, but here are some general tips to keep in mind:


An Overview of Short Sales in Illinois

Posted on in Real Estate

Oak Brook residential real estate lawyerRising mortgage rates, property taxes, and other economic challenges mean that many homeowners are struggling to make monthly payments on their homes. This can put enormous pressure on a family and require them to make a decision about how to manage their spiraling mortgage debt fast. One option may be putting a house up for short sale. If you are interested in learning more about short sales, how they work, and how one might be helpful to you, read on and then contact an Illinois residential real estate attorney. 

What Is a Short Sale? 

A short sale is when a homeowner sells their house for less than they owe on their mortgage. The biggest benefit of a short sale is that the homeowner has a better chance of selling the home before it is repossessed in a foreclosure by the mortgage lender. If someone makes an offer on the home, the mortgage lender has to decide whether to accept the offer. 

If a home is sold in a short sale, all of the proceeds go to the mortgage lender, who then decides whether to forgive the remaining balance or to try to get the homeowner to pay it. Certain programs, such as the Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives (HAFA) program, may be available to help people get into a more affordable housing option while getting the remainder of the balance on the original mortgage forgiven and a small cash payment to assist in relocating to a new home. 


The Possible Effects of Foreclosure

Posted on in Real Estate

Chicago foreclosure defense lawyerAs inflation continues to rise and the economy enters a period of unpredictable highs and lows, many people are left in the middle, trying to afford their family’s lifestyle and feeling as though the most basic things in their lives have become threatened. When it feels like you are at risk of losing your home because you cannot afford the mortgage payments, the serious potential consequences can make it hard to think straight. 

Foreclosure may be in your future, but it does not necessarily have to be the end of the world and you may, in fact, have other options that you are unaware of. At Whitacre & Stefanczuk LTD, we take your concerns seriously and work to communicate clearly with you so you can make wise decisions about your financial future. Our real estate attorneys are here to help and, if appropriate, we provide excellent foreclosure defense services for our clients. 

How Does Foreclosure Work? 

If you do get far enough behind in payments, your mortgage lender will eventually file a lawsuit that asks the court to give them permission to sell the house in a foreclosure sale. If you ignore the lawsuit, the judge typically will grant a default judgment, and your house can be sold. 


cook county real estate lawyerWhen people buy a home - especially when it is their first home - they are often so caught up in the excitement and joy of such an exciting experience that they rarely are on the lookout for scams that are specifically targeting unsuspecting Illinois homebuyers. Yet an entire industry of criminals exists who are thinking up ever more sophisticated ways of scamming people out of the money they worked hard to save so they could buy a home. If you are buying a home, especially for the first time, it is essential to understand some of the most common scams homebuyers face and how an Illinois real estate lawyer can help protect you from them. 

How Do Scammers Target Homebuyers? 

One of the most common ways that homebuyers suffer financial fraud is when a criminal poses as the client’s realtor by tracking the realtor’s email correspondence and seizing opportunities to send a homebuyer false information so earnest money or closing funds get wired to the scammer instead of the bank or the realtor. 

To avoid this, make sure you talk to a trusted person so you can get and give sensitive information while hearing their voice - not just over email - and get details about how to send any money very carefully. Usually, once money is wired, it is gone; if a scammer receives it, he or she will take it and disappear. Have an attorney review any financial transactions before you send them so you have a second pair of eyes checking these major transfers. 

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