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    While the pandemic has shined a light on the growing need for more affordable housing around the Chicagoland area and across the state, there has also been a renewed focus on the remarkable effort exerted by the essential workers in the residential rental property management industry. Even in the face of exceptional challenges, maintenance technicians, property managers, leasing consultants and support professionals never stopped their dedication to keep tenants safe and comfortable in their homes.  Our industry boasts an incredible workforce of hard-working individuals striving to keep our communities running smoothly for our residents.

    As we continue on the path to recovery, there is a growing need to fill essential positions in the housing industry with qualified, skilled team members. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the number of people renting their homes has sharply increased over the past decade, and all signs point to the trend continuing.  With more renters comes a greater need for workers to support the growing rental housing community, providing job opportunities as well as job security. In the U.S., nearly 39 million people live in a total of 20 million apartment homes. While lifestyle trends and homeownership patterns evolve, data shows a demand for 4.6 million new apartments by 2030. Chicagoland is expected to require at least 48,000 new apartments by 2030 to keep pace with local demand. Adding 48,000 new apartments would not only satisfy anticipated housing needs, but it would also increase economic activity across Chicagoland in related industries. There is also a growing need for renovations and improvements on existing apartment buildings –an effort which will also provide a boost in job opportunities for the labor market.

    Recently passed legislation (HB2621) in Springfield will help us reach the goals of bringing more affordable housing to neighborhoods across Illinois. The Chicagoland Apartment Association (CAA), along with our industry partners and affordable housing advocates supported the Housing omnibus bill — which Governor Pritzker has indicated he will sign — that will create grant programs, tax credits, and financial incentives to increase the supply of affordable apartments statewide and help low-income families access housing. The legislation also provides incentives for investment in renovations and improvements on existing residential multi-family buildings, which will further provide a boost in employment for the labor and construction industries.

    With all that’s occurring and more housing coming online, there is a growing demand for residential property management professionals. Now, more than ever, the industry needs talented, hard-working individuals to help build strong communities. There’s a demand for maintenance technicians to help solve people’s problems involving plumbing, electricity, heating, cooling, locks, carpentry, and more. The work is financially rewarding, plus maintenance professionals get to know the people they are helping in the community and feel their personal appreciation. Many opportunities also exist in leasing and community management where professionals help build and nurture friendly, welcoming communities.

    For those seeking a rewarding career that offers great benefits, challenging work, and the opportunity to advance, the CAA’s career center helps connect applicants with opportunities in the Chicagoland area. We’re excited to be observing Residential Property Management Careers Week from July 12–16 and celebrating the people who are fueling our industry’s success.

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