Sam Zell’s Equity Residential halts evictions, rent hikes on 80K-unit portfolio

The REIT’s move follows similar local and national efforts to protect tenants and landlords during the coronavirus crisis

National /
Mar.March 25, 2020 05:00 PM
Sam Zell (Credit: John Lamparski/Getty Images)

Sam Zell (Credit: John Lamparski/Getty Images)

Sam Zell’s Equity Residential said it will halt evictions and rent increases for 90 days on its thousands of apartments across the country in response to the coronavirus emergency.

The move, first reported by Crain’s, comes after several states like California, New York, and Illinois have called for or have suspended eviction proceedings and rent hikes.

The real estate investment trust, which owns 80,000 units nationwide, will allow current tenants to renew leases at existing amounts and will create payment plans for struggling tenants, Crain’s reported.

Zell, a billionaire, has amassed his fortune buying distressed assets, including real estate, during economic uncertainty and upheaval. Some industry experts said they view the coronavirus outbreak as a potential money-making opportunity for him. During a conference call with investors in October, Zell said he thought rent control was having a “chilling effect” on capital going into development.

Equity Residential’s new policy also follows a recent proposal from the National Multifamily Housing Council, a trade group that has called for a moratorium on evictions, plus legal protection against foreclosures and disaster housing assistance.

Other organizations and federal agencies are also taking steps to help tenants and landlords through the crisis.

The Federal Housing Finance Agency is allowing landlords with Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac loans to fall behind on mortgage payments if they halt evictions.

Equity Residential is the country’s second-largest apartment owner. It is based in Chicago, but doesn’t own any apartments there. The REIT has over 36,000 apartments in California and nearly 10,000 in New York. As Equity Residential’s shares have fallen nearly 36 percent this year, its market capitalization has dropped to $19 billion, according to Crain’s. [Crain’s]Brianna Kelly


Related Articles

arrow_forward_ios
Invesca Development Group’s Bernard and Michael Hsiao with the development site at 4300-4400 Northwest Ninth Court in Plantation (Invesca, Google Maps)
Invesca scores $77M construction loan for Plantation rentals
Invesca scores $77M construction loan for Plantation rentals
From left: Isaac Toledano, Teddy Sagi, Jorge Pérez and Michael Masanoff with a rendering of Transit Village (Related, LinkedIn, Rendering via Arquitectonica)
Pérez and Sagi’s Transit Village in WPB advances
Pérez and Sagi’s Transit Village in WPB advances
MG Developer's Alirio Torrealba with 3191 Southwest 39th Avenue and 3160 Southwest 38th Court (LinkedIn, Google Maps)
MG completes Miami apartments dev site assemblage
MG completes Miami apartments dev site assemblage
Manor Broken Sound at 5400 Broken Sound Boulevard in Boca Raton, with Rockpoint’s Bill Walton, Related Group's Jon Paul Pérez and Jorge Pérez and Lincoln Property Company CEO Tim Byrne (Cushman & Wakefield, Rockpoint, Related Group, Wikipedia, Lincoln Property Group)
Lincoln Property pays $194M for newly built Boca apartments
Lincoln Property pays $194M for newly built Boca apartments
Metronomic's Kelly Beam with 3265 Bird Avenue (Metronomic Holdings, Google Maps)
Embattled developer’s Coconut Grove rentals head to auction
Embattled developer’s Coconut Grove rentals head to auction
Lissette Calderon with 2301 Northwest 33rd Avenue
Calderon pays $32M for dev site near Beckham soccer stadium
Calderon pays $32M for dev site near Beckham soccer stadium
Grant Cardone (Photo courtesy of Cardone)
How Grant Cardone built a real estate empire with other people’s money
How Grant Cardone built a real estate empire with other people’s money
Starwood Capital Group's Barry Sternlicht and Villas at the Cove Crossing at 2738 Lantana Road and 2735 Donnelly Drive in Lantana (Getty Images, Google Maps)
Sternlicht’s Starwood makes Lantana affordable housing play
Sternlicht’s Starwood makes Lantana affordable housing play
arrow_forward_ios

The Deal's newsletters give you the latest scoops, fresh headlines, marketing data, and things to know within the industry.

Loading...