Landlord Advice

On the first business day of each year, the City Comptroller announces the rate of interest to be paid on security deposits for residential lease agreements governed by the City of Chicago Residential Landlord and Tenant Ordinance (CLRTO). The new rate is effective January 1, 2017 through December 31, 2017. The 2017 rate remains unchanged at .01%.

In other words, a landlord holding a $1,000 security deposit under a lease made or renewed in 2017 will owe a tenant 10 cents in interest at the end of the lease year. The City bases the rate on average interest rates at Chase Bank, the...

Any landlord who's been around the block knows that every successful tenancy begins with careful tenant screening. There are many tenant screening services available to landlords, but we'll share a few great resources that make it quick and easy to check a potential tenant’s credit and criminal background. The services below are user-friendly and affordable.

First, it’s worth noting that federal law mandates that all three major credit bureaus—TransUnion, Experian, and Equifax—require landlords to undergo a rigorous on-site inspection by a licensed third party inspector before...

February 12, 2016

Possible Reprieve for Chicago Landlords?

In the City of Chicago, the Chicago Residential Landlord Tenant Ordinance (“CRLTO”) applies to most landlord-tenant relationships. Enacted in 1986, the CRLTO’s main purpose is to protect tenants and establish tenant rights. While its purpose may be noble, some of the law’s provisions have had harsh and possibly unintended consequences. Alderman Brendan Reilly from the 42nd Ward, in conjunction with the Chicago Association of Realtors, has proposed an amendment to the CRLTO that would permit judicial discretion in determining penalties in cases involving CRLTO violations.

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The City of Chicago announced the new security deposit interest rates for 2016. The rate remains unchanged from 2015.

Under Chicago law, the rate of interest to be paid on security deposits for rental agreements entered into or renewed during the calendar year 2016 is .01%. In other words, a landlord holding a $1,000 security deposit under a lease made or renewed in 2016 will owe a tenant 10 cents in interest. 

Although this amount may seem insignificant, a landlord who neglects to pay interest on a security deposit could be on the hook for damages equal to two times the...

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