Tenants of an apartment building at 2622 W. Cermak Road in Little Village received a 40-day eviction notice after the building was purchased by investment firm Barnett Capital.
The real estate listing described the short-sale property as an “amazing investment opportunity” in “East Little Village.” It sold for $482,500, just two months after a lien for building violations was placed against the previous owner, Great Hope Family Center. The lien resulted in daily fines of $7,500, according to the Cook County Recorder of Deeds.
The Cermak Tenants Union held a rally and press conference this past Tuesday to protest the eviction. The union is demanding a one-year lease, comparable rent, necessary repairs, and direct communication with Barnett. A petition supporting the tenants has yet to reach its goal of 400 signatures.
“They just want to kick us out and bring white, rich people in to take our places. We can’t let that happen; we have to fight for our homes.”
– Francisco of the Cermak Tenants Union
The eviction and overall rising rents continue to concern long-time residents of the neighborhood, where the average household income is $33,000 and a third of residents live under the poverty line.
The property is near Cermak and Marshall Boulevard, an area that has seen a rise in real estate investments for its proximity to downtown Chicago. Earlier this year, Gozamos reported that one of Little Village’s most recognizable buildings, 2200 S Marshall Boulevard, former home of Latino Youth Alternative High School, was purchased by a long-time real estate broker. The first floor of the building is currently being renovated at an estimated cost of $85,000 to hold a coffee shop.
Photo via Google Street Maps