Continuing Shift of Tax Burden to Commercial Properties
Fall 2021 -
O’Keefe Lyons & Hynes analyzed the recently released assessed valuations for several townships and found a familiar story. When aggregated, the trend in shifting the property tax burden to commercial from residential properties is clear.
Assessed valuation throughout the City’s five completed townships (North, South and West Chicago, Rogers Park and Jefferson) increased 58.68%. The increase was 28.69% for residential properties and 85.37% for commercial class (multi-family, commercial and industrial) properties. When broken down further, assessed valuations increased the most for industrial properties, by 131.59% followed by multifamily properties, 88.23% and commercial assets, 81.89%.
Assessed valuations showed the greatest overall increase in the South Chicago Township and showed great disparity between residential and commercial properties. The increase in assessed valuations for all property classes in that township was 70.45%, with the next highest being West Chicago at 66.97%.
The firm’s detailed review shows the shifting burden is distinct. Assessed valuations in North Chicago Township for commercial, multi-family and industrial properties increased 76.46%. The increase in Jefferson and West Chicago Townships was even greater at 81.36% and 100.59%, respectively.
Investors Remain Optimistic on Chicago’s Industrial Sector
September 2021 - The industrial asset class continues to draw investor attention, according to a new report from The Real Estate Center at DePaul University. This Illinois Real Estate Journal story notes that 36% of survey respondents say they are bullish on Chicago real estate, while 25% say they are neither bullish nor bearish (but optimistic) and 17% said they are bearish. (O’Keefe Lyons & Hynes Member Brian Forde added his perspective on local commercial taxation issues for the report.)
Brian Forde Discusses Taxes in DePaul Report
August 2021 - For the second year in a row, Brian Forde participated in a Mid-Year Chicago Sentiment Report that is produced by The Real Estate Center at DePaul University. Brian, who earned his JD from DePaul, discussed the challenging landscape for commercial businesses due to the continued uncertainty about Cook County and other property taxes. See this Illinois Real Estate Journal story for more details.
Chicago's Opening Up, but Many Real Estate Sectors Still Struggling
June 2021 - After a long stretch of lockdowns, social distancing and vaccines, Chicago has reopened and many activity indicators (foot traffic, transit ridership, etc.) are positive. Hotel stays and the all-important office worker activity level are improving, but many businesses are still struggling to get back to pre-pandemic productivity. Here's what's on the radar for some owners, occupiers and investors.
Hotel Activity — Visitors are filling up downtown hotels and tourists are back in full swing, but the big outlier is business travel and convention activity—key indicators for hotel recovery that have not yet rebounded.
Many predict that business travel will not increase much until after Labor Day. With many offices closed to employees, companies are hard pressed to welcome out-of-town clients or send staff out of town. According to Kastle Systems, a security company that tracks access card swipes across the U.S. only 27.9% of Chicago workers were in the office as of June 30, a slight improvement from the beginning of the month.
Multifamily Investment — A recent article in Crain’s Chicago Business cites a “remarkable turnaround” in downtown multifamily rents and occupancy rates as reasons for optimism. Yet, there are renters who likely will not return downtown for myriad reasons. As a result, uncertainty remains. Industry experts—capital markets, brokers and other advisors—note that property tax uncertainty is a real concern and may cause some investors to redline Chicago, thinning out the buyer pool and putting downward pressure on pricing.
One year gone: What have CRE pros missed most during 12 months of COVID-19?
March 2021 - This Midwest Real Estate News story looks at how the commercial real industry is faring a year after the onset of COVID-19. OLH Member Whitney Carlisle talks about the firm’s use of technology to guide its work and client interaction during the pandemic. New notes that: “Shifting from in-person meetings and court appearances to practicing law remotely was almost seamless for our firm because we have long utilized technology to enhance our legal services.”
See the Midwest Real Estate News story for more.
Kevin Hynes on the 2020 Orland Township reassessment
January 2021 - Kevin Hynes discussed the 2020 reassessment of Orland Township during the Orland Park Area Chamber of Commerce’s annual legislative update. Kevin provided a general summary of the reassessment and a detailed look at:
- the shifting of the tax burden onto Orland Park businesses and its impact on businesses
- the gross increase in commercial values
- the pandemic’s impact on the reassessment
- the arbitrary reduction of residential values during the pandemic
Attorney Jabari A. Jackson Joins O’Keefe Lyons & Hynes
January 2021 -
Attorney Jabari A. Jackson joined the firm and will focus his practice on commercial property tax appeals. He has more than 20 years of experience in the legal and financial areas and previously worked as an analyst with the Cook County Board of Review. In that role, he analyzed property tax appeals for commercial and industrial properties throughout Cook County. He also represented the Board of Review at commercial hearings at the Illinois Property Tax Appeals Board.
From 2013 to 2014, he served as the Deputy Director, Bureau of Vital Records, at the Cook County Clerk’s Office. He also worked for two years as legal counsel at the Cook County Assessor’s office.
Jackson earned his J.D. with honors from Northwestern University School of Law in 1998. He also earned a Master of Laws (LLM) in real estate from The John Marshall Law School, where he was a member of Lambda Alpha International.
For more background and to contact Jabari, click here.
Elizabeth Gracie Moderates Panel at 2021 Forecast Event
Jan. 7, 2021 -
Elizabeth Gracie participated in the annual commercial real estate Forecast event produced (and held remotely) by
In what has become an annual tradition, Liz moderated a discussion on the downtown and suburban office markets. Also featured on her panel were Roger Heerema, Wright Heerema Architects; Mickey Stefan, Glenstar; and Elbert Walters III, Powering Chicago. The discussion included the impact of COVID on the marketplace; what tenants are expecting of buildings now and post COVID; and how owners and developers are stepping up to meet those needs.
Click here for a video of the panel discussion.
Industrial Construction Sets Record in Chicago
Jan. 5, 2021 -
Industrial development continues to set records in the Chicago market, which has nearly 30 million square feet of new space under construction in Q4 2020, according to
The story cites a Colliers International market report in noting that most of the projects were build-to-suits and about one-third are being built on speculation. The pandemic has fueled sizable growth in industrial activity, as consumers turn to e-commerce to avoid in-person shopping.