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...

December 16, 2015

The Decision is in: A Move-In Fee is Not a Security Deposit or Pre-Paid Rent

To avoid the harsh penalties imposed by the Chicago Residential Landlord Tenant Ordinance (RLTO) for security deposit infractions, many landlords have chosen to charge a flat “move-in” fee in lieu of a security deposit. However, until recently, it was not clear whether this practice was legal. Some concerns included:

  • What can a landlord reasonably charge a tenant for a move-in fee? 
  • Must a landlord incur administrative costs to justify a “move-in” fee?
  • What steps are necessary to ensure that the fee is a “move-in” fee and not a security deposit?
  • And
  • ...
Loft apartment in Streeterville with hardwood floors, an open kitchen, and timber ceilings. The kitchen has an island, stainless steel appliances, and granite counter tops.

Thanks to its rich history, the Lofts at River East is surely one of Chicago’s most unique downtown apartment buildings. The recently renovated structure originally housed the Pugh Terminal Warehouse, a wholesale product exposition center built between 1905 and 1920. The building was converted to retail space in the 1990s. The space’s recent transformation into apartments has created a luxury building infused with the character of a loft. Here are a few features that make the Lofts at River East distinctive from other apartment buildings in downtown Chicago.

  • South-facing units
  • ...
November 24, 2015

Are Landlords Legally Required to Make Repairs?

Among the many things landlords worry about, repairs are a top concern. Generally, repairs are the obligation of the landlord unless the lease states otherwise. However, if the cause of the damage can be easily attributed to the tenant, the landlord can charge back the work to the tenant as long as the lease is clear on this issue.

Prior to move-in, landlords should inspect the unit with their prospective tenant and complete a signed report as a rider to the lease. (Domu offers a premises inspection form here.) This report will...

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