Real Estate Transactions Slowed by COVID-19 Shutdowns
Real estate purchase and sale transactions will be impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. The ability of purchasers to perform due diligence is likely to be affected due to the inability of vendors (surveyors, engineers, environmental consultants) to mobilize personnel to sites to perform the necessary services. Purchasers which are attempting to obtain zoning and land use approvals will be delayed as the governmental bodies cancel meetings and personnel are not available to meet or process applications. Those projects which involve construction activities will inevitably be delayed due to the inability to process and obtain permits, the lack of construction personnel and potential delays in obtaining construction materials due to disruptions in the supply chain. Existing contracts may or may not deal with these issues in terms of force majeure provisions, as we wrote about here: [IForce Majeure" Clause or Other Legal Defenses May Excuse Contractual Obligations Due to COVID-19s ]. Burke, Warren, MacKay & Serritella, P.C. is ready advise you on how to best navigate through your transactions as the effects of this situation arise.
If you have a closing scheduled in the next several weeks the ability to close may be affected by the availability of title company personnel to handle the closing or issue title policies and whether the local governmental office is available to record the necessary documents. We have been in contact with our local title insurance companies and the various governmental bodies that are involved in our real estate matters and while the title companies are open and continuing to handle closings for their customers, some of the title companies (Chicago Title) are only transacting mail in closings and customers are not being allowed in its offices. Please contact us for updates.
As of March 19, 2020, the date of this article:
The Cook County Treasurer’s and Cook County Assessor’s office are closed
The Cook County Recorder’s office is closed to the public but is recording documents filed electronically or delivered by mail or overnight delivery.