Old Buildings and State-of-the-Art Technology: How to Have the Best of Both Worlds in Your CRE Investment Properties

DuPage County real estate attorneysAlthough simpler times have long since passed, a great many people still feel a sense of nostalgia when they step into an old building. Older, convertible buildings can also be a boon for real estate investors, as they are often priced below market value. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to retrofit these buildings to ensure they offer the state-of-the-art technology that most commercial real estate tenants want and need for their businesses. The solution? Find a way to have the best of both worlds. 

When is Retrofitting an Old Building Worth the Cost and Effort?

Not every building can or should be retrofitted. Consider New York’s Pennsylvania Station as an example. The building, though a historical and architectural work of art, had become dilapidated to the point that it was a safety hazard, and the cost of repair was prohibitive. Without another practical use for the space, retrofitting seemed not only impossible, but also pointless. There are buildings that can be retrofitted, however – ones that would greatly benefit the community, investor, and potential tenant.

Consider a building that can be converted into an eco-friendly, high-tech space in a high-demand location with little additional building space. So long as the possible return on investment (ROI) and demand are high enough, the cost of retrofitting could be well worth the investment. As an added bonus, the investor is able to walk away from the project, knowing they benefited their community and the environment by not requiring a new space or additional resources.

Taking the First Steps – Due Diligence and Determining the Potential ROI

Before deciding to retrofit an older building, investors are encouraged to conduct their due diligence. First, determine the cost of repairs (which can be especially costly in older buildings). Be sure to consider things like bringing the electrical wiring and building structure up to code. Then determine if retrofitting is even possible, and calculate its total cost. It is also important to know what your potential ROI on the property might be. To reach an answer on this, you may want to look at what similar structures have rented or sold for in the area. If no transactions like yours have recently taken place, consider looking at structures in areas with similar demographics. Lastly, ensure you have the assistance and knowledge of a skilled legal professional on your side. 

Contact Our DuPage County Commercial Real Estate Lawyers

Whether you are considering retrofitting an older space or would like to build something completely new, Stock, Carlson, Oldfield & McGrath, LLC is the firm to call. Seasoned and backed by more than 40 years of legal experience, our Wheaton real estate attorneys can assist you with every legal aspect of your next real estate project. Call 630-655-2500 and schedule your consultation wth our offices to get started today. 

Sources:

https://www.crainsnewyork.com/real-estate/commercial-real-estate-conundrum-investors-want-old-buildings-new-tech

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/arts-culture/how-nostalgia-plays-into-our-love-of-buildings-old-and-new-180947649/

 

An Overview of Illinois’ Landlord-Tenant Laws

Illinois landlord lawyersWhile, in most cases, a landlord and tenant can complete the term of a lease without issue, there are scenarios in which legal assistance may be needed, either by the landlord or the tenant. Some even require the assistance of an attorney. To help you determine if you might be facing such an issue, consider the following overview on Illinois’ landlord-tenant laws.

Required Leasing Disclosures for Landlords

Under Illinois state law, landlords are required to disclose specific information to tenants. Usually, done through the lease agreement, this information includes: 

  • Utilities that are included in the price of rent (paid by the landlord but billed to the tenant);
  • Rent concessions must be detailed in a very specific manner. If a landlord fails to comply with this law, they could face both civil and criminal penalties;
  • Presence of radon (if applicable). Landlords are not required to test for radon, but if they test and find it is present, they must disclose this to any prospective tenant; and
  • Any local city or county disclosures that may be required by law.

Security Deposit Limits and Returns 

While Illinois state law does not limit the amount that a landlord can charge for a security deposit, it does require that any returns be made in a timely manner (usually 30-45 days after the tenant moves out). If a deposit will not be returned, due to damages or unpaid rent, landlords are encouraged to submit to the tenant an itemized list that explains any charges for which they are responsible. Tenants have the right to dispute any charges that they incur, and they have the right to take the matter to small claims court for up to $10,000 in unreturned deposits, but the assistance of an attorney is recommended for this process. If the landlord does not return a deposit but holds it for six or more months, they may be responsible for paying the tenant interest on any unreturned security deposits. 

Notice Requirements on Price Changes, Evictions, and Lease Termination

Certain rent and leasing notices are regulated by state law, including increases to rent prices, evictions, and termination of tenancy. Specifically, landlords must notify tenants:

  • 30 days prior to a change in rent prices;
  • 5-10 days to pay rent before filing for eviction for a non-payment of rent; and
  • 10 days for a notice to end tenancy when a term of the lease has been violated.

Tenant Protections and a Landlord’s Right to Access Property

State law also protects both landlords and tenants in certain situations. For example, a landlord has the right to inspect the property, but they must provide the tenant with advance notice before entering the property. There are also laws regarding how a landlord must handle property that has been abandoned by a previous tenant. Protections for tenants who are victims of domestic violence or have certain disabilities are also covered under Illinois’ landlord-tenant laws. 

Our DuPage County Real Estate Attorneys Can Help with Your Landlord-Tenant Issue

Backed by more than 40 years of legal experience, Stock, Carlson, Oldfield & McGrath, LLC can assist with your landlord-tenant issues. In every situation, we strive for the most favorable outcome possible. Contact our Wheaton real estate lawyers at 630-665-2500 to schedule your consultation today. 

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=2913&ChapterID=37

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=2206&ChapterID=62

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=2208&ChapterID=62

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=2202&ChapterID=62

 

Millennials Focus on Dog-Friendly Properties When Renting – What This Could Mean for Your Real Estate Portfolio

Illinois real estate lawyersIf you want to win over the millennial generation and expand your real estate portfolio, it may be time to let your properties go to the dogs – literally. Recent surveys indicate that this generation is  not looking for design features or your typical amenities when deciding where to rent or buy. Instead, they are focused on finding a home that caters to their furry friends. Learn how you can better cater to this generation by adding more dog-friendly amenities, and discover how a seasoned real estate lawyer can help you to further expand your real estate portfolio to secure a better, healthier financial future. 

Real Estate Has Gone to the Dogs

The millennial generation has finally reached the age where they are not just renting, but also purchasing homes. The reason is not to start a family, however. Instead, millennials are looking to give their dogs the best life possible. In fact, one survey found that 33 percent of the millennials who purchased a home did so because of their pets, which outranked marriage (25 percent) and the possibility of a child (19 percent). Another 42 percent of millennials who do not yet own homes say they are planning to eventually purchase one to accommodate a dog.

Amenities for their pets, such as a fence or room to roam (such as at a nearby dog park) are also some of the biggest factors that millennials use to determine which home they will rent or buy. Millennials are also far more likely to purchase a home with “luxury” pet features, such as a dog washing station or a nearby, upscale dog park, than other generations. 

Winning Over the Millennial Generation in Real Estate

Dog-owning millennials have to think about more than just location and amenities when purchasing or renting a home. Homeowner associations (HOAs), renters’ and homeowners’ insurance restrictions, and other aspects of renting and home ownership can also limit where they live. As such, developers are highly encouraged to do more than just offer amenities to pet owners; understand what sort of policies that your potential buyers or renters might be facing and try to mitigate them whenever possible. For example, if your rental property’s insurance does not cover certain dog breeds, you might consider shopping around for other policies that are less restrictive so that you can open your home to more renters in the millennial generation. 

Contact Our Wheaton Real Estate Lawyers

Whether you are looking to purchase a new property, upgrade your existing one, or simply want to know more about expanding your portfolio so that it appeals more to the millennial generation, contact Stock, Carlson, Oldfield & McGrath, LLC for help. Committed to being the law firm you can trust, our DuPage County real estate lawyers have over 40 years of experience, and we will protect your interests at every turn. Call 630-665-2500 to schedule your consultation.

Sources:

https://www.cnbc.com/video/2018/08/31/millennials-and-dog-driven-real-estate.html

https://www.nbcnews.com/business/real-estate/one-big-reason-millennials-are-buying-homes-their-dogs-n790921