As a tenant in the Chicago area, it is important to know and understand your rental rights and responsibilities. You are needing to break your lease. Maybe you’ve gotten a new job, lost your job, you live in an undesirable neighborhood. Are you purchasing a home? Moving in together, or ending your relationship? Whether it’s one or a number of different reasons, you should educate yourself on your chicago tenant rights prior to renting.
When you rent, you will most likely be asked for a security deposit. This is money that the landlord keeps in the case of any damages or repairs needed for the time you are renting from them. In Chicago, the security deposit is the property of the tenant. The landlord is simply holding the deposit, and should be holding it in a separate account which bears interest. After moving out, the landlord is given 45 days to notify you of any damages. If you are not notified, the landlord is then obligated to return he security deposit to you. In the event there are repairs to be made, he or she must furnish the paid receipts within the following 30 days.
It would be in your best interest to notify a security deposit lawyer in the event of any of the following: you have moved and your landlord has not returned your deposit, they have failed to pay interest on your security deposit, they have claimed your deposit for invalid repairs, or you have only received partial payment back. There are proper procedures to be followed in a situation where you are taking your landlord to court. You may contact The Illinois Tenants Union, as well, at (773)478-1133. Residents living in the Chicago and Evanston areas are governed by the RLTO, or Residential Landlord and Tenant Ordinance. The Illinois Tenants Union serves individuals who rent houses, condos, or in apartment buildings. They are your advocate if you are a residential renter.
Your landlord may only keep your security deposit after you’ve moved if you have moved out owing rent, or you have damaged something in the apartment. The key to a good relationship between you and your landlord is knowing your responsibility as a renter, and knowing your rights. You can receive further information regarding your rights by contacting the Chicago Rents Right hot-line at (312)742-RENT.