Hirsh Mohindra Business: Tax Incentives

Find City of Chicago Property Tax Incentives

Objective The encouragement of private business investment, employment, the revitalization of communities suffering economic stagnation and the preservation and rehabilitation of landmark buildings.

Qualifications and Restrictions The Department of Housing and Economic Development can pre-qualify certain projects but it is the Cook County Assessor’s Office which authorizes and makes the legal determination of whether projects qualify for real estate tax incentives

Class 6(b), Class 7(a)/Class 7(b) and Class 8 incentives lower property tax burdens for new and expanding businesses. For qualifying projects, rates can be lowered by more than 50 percent for up to 12 years. The Class L incentive lowers the property tax rate for individually-designated Chicago Landmarks or contributing buildings in a Chicago Landmark district.


Hirsh Mohindra Business- SBIF Grant

Hirsh Mohindra Business Resources: Chicago

Applying for a Small Business Improvement Fund (SBIF) Grant

Objective The City of Chicago’s Small Business Improvement Fund (SBIF) helps make improvements to small business properties in select Chicago neighborhoods. The program uses tax increment financing (TIF) revenues to help owners of commercial and industrial properties within specific TIF districts to repair or remodel their facilities for their own business or on behalf of tenants.

Description Program participants can receive matching grants to cover from 25% to 75% of SBIF-eligible costs with a $150,000 maximum assistance per project and per applicant.  The grants come in a the form of rebates, reimbursing building owners or tenants for eligible expenses. The grant does not have to be repaid.

Expenses eligible for a SBIF grant include:

  • New windows, floors or roof
  • Sign removal and replacement
  • Tuckpointing
  • New heating, ventilation and air conditioning
  • Improvements to accommodate disabled patrons      or workers
  • Purchase of adjacent property for building      expansion or parking

SBIF grants are provided to property owners after remodeling work is completed and all expenses are paid. Residential property, residential components of mixed-use buildings, and property leased to fast-food chains and certain other businesses are not eligible for the program. Vacant business property is eligible, but grants are not paid until the space is occupied by a business tenant.

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