Chicago summer rentals – no Irish need apply

We recently received the following inquiry concerning summer housing:

Hi my name is [redacted] and I am a twenty two year old student from Dublin Ireland. I was luckily enough to get the opportunity to work in Chicago last Summer and as a result have decided to return with a few of my college friends this Summer to work again. Myself and four friends shall be arriving in Chicago on the 28th of May and will be in the market for some form of accommodation in or near the Lakeview area till the 1st of September.

The reason I am emailing you is because I am finding it extremely difficult to find any websites or rental agencies that cater to our needs (a 3 month Summer Rental) and your company came highly recommended. I am not expecting you to find us any accommodation I was merely hoping for some general information or advice on how to go about securing some form of accommodation. Any information you deem useful would be extremely appreciated.

The first question that comes to mind is “why not rent where you rented last summer?” The short answer, if you ask Chicago landlords who’ve experienced the “Irish invasion,” is: “No pads for Paddy, ever again.” New City relates the following rental story from Armitage Hardware’s Dan O’Donnell:

“Most of them are pretty good, but a few aren’t. I only had one last year: 950 Fletcher…” his voice trails off and his head falls into his hands. “My God, it was a nightmare.”

The address in question was actually two buildings scheduled to be gutted in September. Within two weeks, forty-five players from two opposing Irish football teams—one from Donegal and the other from Kerry—were living there. “These kids are arch rivals on the football field, and you get them drunk, and it creates monster problems,” recalls O’Donnell. Wild parties with hundreds of Irish lasted all night, beer cans littered up and down the street—and all of it taking place next to the brand new million-dollar houses on Fletcher.

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