Chicago’s rental services, a/k/a apartment finders a/k/a apartment locators, would have you believe that you’ll be benefitting from the assistance of a fully-licensed expert in your apartment search.
As often as not you’ll be dealing with a total rookie who’s working on a 120-day permit, sometimes well beyond the legally allowed 120 days.
Read the help-wanted ads at Craigslist for an eye-opening look at how minimal the qualifications are for new agents at almost all of the rental services, and how ludicrous the come-ons are for recruiting them. $175K, really?
Why do rental services set the bar so low for new recruits? Short answer: well-educated, competent people are highly unlikely to work for or remain at Chicago’s rental services. It’s a typically low-pay, high-turnover occupation at companies that frequently mandate lax ethical standards and sleazy behavior.
If you’re determined to work with a rental agent in your apartment search, contact one of Chicago’s established traditional brokerage firms and ask for a licensed broker who has a minimum of three years’ experience in the business.