Finished 2br turned out to be gutted basement: is this ethical? (Illinois)

During my apartment hunt in the Chicago area, I reached out via Zillow to a broker about a 2br that looked beautiful in the pictures: gleaming new kitchen, handsome hardwood floors.

 

When we arrived at the unit itself, it turned out to be a completely empty, gutted basement “unit” covered in sawdust. No cabinetry, nothing.

 

At no time before this was it disclosed to me that the unit in the photographs was “under construction” (or, to put it more directly, that it did not actually exist). Ad didn’t mention it, broker didn’t mention it.

 

Being short on time (visiting from out-of-town just to find an apartment), I was exasperated. The broker, who was not able to show me any finished units in the same building, glared at me and texted a few minutes later to explain that I simply don’t understand how things work in Chicago.

 

Fair enough: I don’t know much about real estate in Chicago. But to me, it seems unethical to post pictures of a unit that has no resemblance whatsoever to the real thing without disclosing that the unit pictured 1) does not exist yet or 2) is not actually a comparable unit.

 

(Since the area in question has a big university nearby and the rental market is largely geared toward undergrads, I worry that this bait-and-switch tactic is a way of tricking international or out-of-state students into signing a lease sight-unseen…)

 

What do you think? Is it ethical to post pictures of a finished unit without disclosing that the real unit has not yet been constructed? Is this really “how things are done” in some cities?

submitted by /u/MadDuloque
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During my apartment hunt in the Chicago area, I reached out via Zillow to a broker about a 2br that looked beautiful in the pictures: gleaming new kitchen, handsome hardwood floors.   When we arrived at the unit itself, it turned out to be a completely empty, gutted basement “unit” covered in sawdust. No cabinetry, nothing.   At no time before this was it disclosed to me that the unit in the photographs was “under construction” (or, to put it more directly, that it did not actually exist). Ad didn’t mention it, broker didn’t mention it.   Being short on time (visiting from out-of-town just to find an apartment), I was exasperated. The broker, who was not able to show me any finished units in the same building, glared at me and texted a few minutes later to explain that I simply don’t understand how things work in Chicago.   Fair enough: I don’t know much about real estate in Chicago. But to me, it seems unethical to post pictures of a unit that has no resemblance whatsoever to the real thing without disclosing that the unit pictured 1) does not exist yet or 2) is not actually a comparable unit.   (Since the area in question has a big university nearby and the rental market is largely geared toward undergrads, I worry that this bait-and-switch tactic is a way of tricking international or out-of-state students into signing a lease sight-unseen…)   What do you think? Is it ethical to post pictures of a finished unit without disclosing that the real unit has not yet been constructed? Is this really “how things are done” in some cities? submitted by /u/MadDuloque [link] [comments]

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