SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Tenants would have more payment options under a bill passed last week by state Rep. Anne Stava-Murray, D-Downers Grove, prohibiting landlords from requiring electronic payment.
“Access to housing is a fundamental necessity, and there should be no barriers to valid payment,” Stava-Murray said. “Unfortunately, many landlords require payment to be conducted through electronic portals that are less accessible to many—such as service industry workers who are primarily paid in cash—and which often charge additional flat or percentage fees, increasing the cost of rent. Renters should have the option of using other valid payment methods.”
Stava-Murray’s House Bill 1628 requires landlords to allow tenants to pay their rent by check or in cash. It would apply to leases entered into or renewed after the bill becomes effective. Landlords who fail to comply could be subject to fines or civil penalties.
“The idea that prospective renters—who may become homeless without a deal—and landlords—who are not subject to the same conditions—are contracting on a level playing field is a transparent fiction,” Stava-Murray said. “Most renters are not in a position to turn down a lease based on one provision it contains. When some of us are left disadvantaged by policies that privilege those of certain financial circumstances, all of us need to recognize that that is an equity issue.”
Stava-Murray’s office is reachable at 630-605-0595 or email@example.com.