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Illinois Laws for Landlords.
Your Resource for laws affecting landlords in Illinois

(Information is updated daily)

Landlord Legislation in Illinois

Below is a list of laws for landlords in Illinois. New resources, bills and articles are updated daily. You can also type in a Bill Number or Keyword in the search bar to find additional details on laws.

HB4949 IHDA-HOME PRESERVATION GRANTS

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Amends the Illinois Housing Development Act. Provides that from funds appropriated, directly or indirectly, from moneys received by the State from the Coronavirus State Fiscal Recovery Fund in accordance with the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, the Illinois Housing Development Authority (Authority) shall expend funds to create a Senior Home Preservation Grant Program to provide grants to legacy resident seniors to preserve the safety of their homes. Provides that grants may be used for housing owned by a legacy resident senior to reduce the cost of repair and rehabilitation, to remove or correct health or safety hazards, to comply with applicable housing standards or codes, or to make needed repairs to improve the general living conditions of the legacy resident senior, including improved accessibility for seniors with disabilities. Requires applicants to apply to the program in a form and manner prescribed by the Authority. Provides that, to qualify for a grant, the applicant must, at a minimum, be the owner of the home and use the home as his or her primary residence. Permits the Authority to establish minimum housing standards applicants must meet to qualify for a grant under the program. Provides that the Authority may adopt rules to implement the program. Provides that expenditures of funds provided under the authority of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 shall be in accordance with the permitted purposes under the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 and all related federal guidance.
Sponsors
Lakesia Collins Dagmara Avelar
Last Action
Rule 19(a) / Re-referred to Rules Committee
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-hb4949/

HB1756 PROPERTY-FIREARM POSSESSION

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Amends the Common Interest Community Association Act, the Condominium Property Act, the Landlord and Tenant Act, and the Mobile Home Landlord and Tenant Rights Act. Provides that a unit owner shall not be prohibited or a landlord or park owner shall not prohibit a tenant from lawfully possessing, carrying, transporting, or storing a firearm, any part of a firearm, or firearm ammunition in: the unit of the unit owner or dwelling unit or mobile home unit of the tenant; a vehicle located in a parking area provided by the common interest community association, condominium association, or landlord or park owner for the unit owner or tenant; or within a common area location of a common interest community or condominium or another controlled location of the landlord or park owner. Effective immediately.
Sponsors
David Friess
Last Action
Rule 19(a) / Re-referred to Rules Committee
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-hb1756/

HB2765 CIVIL LAW-TECH

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Amends the Rental Property Utility Service Act. Makes a technical change in a Section concerning certain tenant-paid utility payment arrangements that are prohibited and notice of change in a payment arrangement.
Sponsors
Delia Ramirez
Last Action
Rule 19(a) / Re-referred to Rules Committee
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-hb2765/

HB2877 COVID19-EMERG HOUSING ASSIST

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Creates the COVID-19 Federal Emergency Rental Assistance Program Act. Contains provisions for: the Federal Emergency Rental Assistance program; accessibility and transparency; process for further prioritizing applicants for financial assistance and housing stability services; and required notifications and correspondence. Amends the Code of Civil Procedure. Makes changes concerning the sealing of court files. Provides that certain new provisions concerning sealing of court files in a residential eviction action apply until August 1, 2022. Contains provisions for: the sealing of a court file in a residential eviction action; emergency sealing of a court file in a residential eviction action during the COVID-19 emergency and economic recovery period; and a temporary COVID-19 stay of certain foreclosure proceedings and filings. Makes corresponding changes to a provision regarding demand for rent and eviction actions. Makes corresponding changes in the Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act. Effective immediately.
Sponsors
Delia Ramirez Lindsey LaPointe Lakesia Collins Will Guzzardi Emanuel Welch Maura Hirschauer Kelly Cassidy Carol Ammons Mary Flowers Elizabeth Hernandez Theresa Mah Latoya Greenwood Edgar Gonzalez Aaron Ortiz Daniel Didech Barbara Hernandez Sonya Harper Nicholas Smith Rita Mayfield Maurice West Camille Lilly Debbie Meyers-Martin Anne Stava-Murray Justin Slaughter Bob Morgan Jennifer Gong-Gershowitz Robyn Gabel Curtis Tarver Jaime Andrade Jehan Gordon Marcus Evans Dagmara Avelar Denyse Wang Stoneback Eva Dina Delgado Anna Moeller Mark Walker Michelle Mussman Deborah Conroy Angelica Guerrero-Cuellar Natalie Manley LaShawn Ford Kambium Buckner Omar Aquino Sara Feigenholtz Doris Turner Cristina Pacione-Zayas Robert Peters Karina Villa Celina Villanueva Cristina Castro Scott Bennett Jacqueline Collins Christopher Belt Mike Simmons Adriane Johnson Linda Holmes Ram Villivalam Patricia Vanpelt-Watkins John Connor Melinda Bush Meg Loughran Cappel Suzanne Glowiak Elgie Sims Laura Fine David Koehler Laura Murphy
Last Action
Public Act . . . . . . . . . 102-0005
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-hb2877/

HB2775 HOMELESSNESS PREVENTION

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Amends the Homelessness Prevention Act. Provides that the Department of Human Services shall be mindful of preventing undue administrative burden in the application process for individual tenants in applying for assistance. Provides that program staff shall endeavor to lessen any administrative burden on landlords receiving assistance payments. Amends the Eviction Article of the Code of Civil Procedure. Provides that a defendant shall have an affirmative defense to any action where the plaintiff demands has made a demand for possession that is based on unpaid rent regardless of whether the owner has joined in the action a claim for rent if the defendant, a social services agency, or a government agency offered the owner an application for emergency housing assistance and the owner refused to complete the process to obtain the emergency housing assistance and the defendant would have been eligible for the emergency housing assistance program. Provides that the owner may overcome the affirmative defense only if the court makes a finding that the application for emergency housing assistance would impose a significant administrative burden on the owner. Amends the Illinois Human Rights Act. Defines "source of income". Provides that if a landlord requires that a prospective tenant or current tenant have a certain threshold level of income, then the landlord shall subtract any source of income in the form of a rent voucher or subsidy from the total of the monthly rent prior to calculating if the income criteria have been met. Provides that a landlord shall not apply an income or asset requirement to a tenant with a non-wage source of income that the landlord does not apply to all tenants. Provides that if an income or asset requirement serves to generally exclude participants in a housing or benefits program, that requirement shall be considered presumptively discriminatory. Makes other changes.
Sponsors
LaShawn Ford Lindsey LaPointe Kelly Cassidy Anne Stava-Murray Barbara Hernandez Michelle Mussman Maurice West William Davis Jonathan Carroll Debbie Meyers-Martin Emanuel Welch Marcus Evans Theresa Mah Aaron Ortiz Camille Lilly Latoya Greenwood Jawaharial Williams Ram Villivalam Karina Villa Doris Turner Mike Simmons Jacqueline Collins Robert Peters Christopher Belt Patricia Vanpelt-Watkins Suzanne Glowiak Ann Gillespie Adriane Johnson Elgie Sims Celina Villanueva Mattie Hunter Cristina Pacione-Zayas Cristina Castro Scott Bennett Laura Ellman Robert Martwick Melinda Bush Laura Fine Emil Jones David Koehler Antonio Munoz Kimberly Lightford
Last Action
Sponsor Removed Sen. John Connor
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-hb2775/

SB2492 HOMELESSNESS PREVENTION

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Amends the Homelessness Prevention Act. Provides that the Department of Human Services shall be mindful of preventing undue administrative burden in the application process for individual tenants in applying for assistance. Provides that program staff shall endeavor to lessen any administrative burden on landlords receiving assistance payments. Amends the Eviction Article of the Code of Civil Procedure. Provides that a defendant shall have an affirmative defense to any action where the plaintiff demands has made a demand for possession that is based on unpaid rent regardless of whether the owner has joined in the action a claim for rent if the defendant, a social services agency, or a government agency offered the owner an application for emergency housing assistance and the owner refused to complete the process to obtain the emergency housing assistance and the defendant would have been eligible for the emergency housing assistance program. Provides that the owner may overcome the affirmative defense only if the court makes a finding that the application for emergency housing assistance would impose a significant administrative burden on the owner. Amends the Illinois Human Rights Act. Defines "source of income". Provides that if a landlord requires that a prospective tenant or current tenant have a certain threshold level of income, then the landlord shall subtract any source of income in the form of a rent voucher or subsidy from the total of the monthly rent prior to calculating if the income criteria have been met. Provides that a landlord shall not apply an income or asset requirement to a tenant with a non-wage source of income that the landlord does not apply to all tenants. Provides that if an income or asset requirement serves to generally exclude participants in a housing or benefits program, that requirement shall be considered presumptively discriminatory. Makes other changes.
Sponsors
Ram Villivalam Karina Villa Robert Peters
Last Action
Rule 3-9(a) / Re-referred to Assignments
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-sb2492/

SB0668 COVID19-EMERG HOUSING ASSIST

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Creates the COVID-19 Federal Emergency Rental Assistance Program Act. Contains provisions for: the Federal Emergency Rental Assistance program; accessibility and transparency; process for further prioritizing applicants for financial assistance and housing stability services; and required notifications and correspondence. Amends the Code of Civil Procedure. Makes changes concerning the sealing of court files. Provides that certain new provisions concerning sealing of court files in a residential eviction action apply until August 1, 2022. Contains provisions for: the sealing of a court file in a residential eviction action; emergency sealing of a court file in a residential eviction action during the COVID-19 emergency and economic recovery period; and a temporary COVID-19 stay of certain foreclosure proceedings and filings. Makes corresponding changes to a provision regarding demand for rent and eviction actions. Makes corresponding changes in the Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act. Effective immediately.
Sponsors
Omar Aquino Robert Peters Jacqueline Collins Cristina Pacione-Zayas Adriane Johnson
Last Action
Rule 3-9(a) / Re-referred to Assignments
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-sb0668/

HB4213 ESSENTIAL GOVT SERVICES FUND

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Amends the State Finance Act. Provides that for any amount transferred from the Essential Government Services Support Fund (the EGSS Fund) at the direction of the Governor, the Governor shall provide notice of such transfer to the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the Minority Leader of the House of Representatives, the President of the Senate, and the Minority Leader of the Senate. Provides for the timing of the notice. Provides for the content of the notice. Provides that any amount transferred at the direction of the Governor from the EGSS Fund to the General Revenue Fund or other fund in the State treasury for government services shall also be accompanied by an appropriation from the EGSS Fund in an amount equal to the transferred amount with a description of the appropriation that matches the reason stated by the Governor. Provides that if an appropriation is not made within a specified period, then the State Comptroller and the State Treasurer shall automatically transfer from the General Revenue Fund to the EGSS Fund an amount equal to that transferred from the EGSS Fund.
Sponsors
Tom Demmer Tony McCombie
Last Action
Added Chief Co-Sponsor Rep. Tony McCombie
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-hb4213/

HB4264 $IDPH-HIV/AIDS

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Appropriates various amounts from the State Coronavirus Urgent Remediation Emergency Fund to the Department of Public Health for the administration of HIV/AIDS programs, including, but not limited to, the Getting to Zero-Illinois program. Effective immediately.
Sponsors
Gregory Harris Kelly Cassidy Delia Ramirez Lamont Robinson Bob Morgan Anne Stava-Murray Kathleen Willis Aaron Ortiz Lindsey LaPointe Barbara Hernandez Margaret Croke Ann Williams
Last Action
Added Co-Sponsor Rep. Ann M. Williams
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-hb4264/

HB4473 IHDA-AMERICAN RESCUE PLAN

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Amends the Illinois Housing Development Act. Provides that of the funds received by the Illinois Housing Development Authority for Homeowner Assistance under the federal American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, at least 20% shall be allocated to counties and municipalities on the basis of: (i) per capita plus; and (ii) number of housing units that are over 50 years old, to be used to aid eligible persons in coming into compliance with building code violations. Provides that eligible persons are those who are the owner-occupier of the residence, with an income level that is 200% of the federal poverty level or 50% of the median income of the county.
Sponsors
Deanne Mazzochi
Last Action
Referred to Rules Committee
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-hb4473/

HB0847 EVICTION MORATORIUM-LIMIT

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Creates the Eviction Moratorium Clarification Act. Provides that in any eviction moratorium issued by the Governor through Executive Order or legislation passed by the General Assembly, the moratorium shall not prohibit the eviction of specified individuals. Provides that evictions may be filed, commenced, and enforced against the specified individuals, along with any individuals who otherwise fail to meet the stated requirements of an eviction moratorium. Provides that in a rental or lease agreement in which utility payments are included in the rent payment, the landlord or property manager shall not be responsible for a tenant's portion of a monthly utility payment for a tenant not paying rent who is protected by an eviction moratorium if the utility charges for that tenant are for more than 20% higher usage than any month in the previous year. Effective immediately.
Sponsors
Charles Meier Michael Marron
Last Action
Rule 19(a) / Re-referred to Rules Committee
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-hb0847/

HB3510 LANDLORD/TENANT-RENT RELIEF

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Amends the Landlord and Tenant Act. Provides that during and after an emergency period beginning on January 1, 2021 and ending on July 1, 2021, a landlord may not, and may not threaten to: (1) deliver a termination notice of a rental agreement based on a tenant's nonpayment balance; (2) initiate or continue an action to take possession of a rental unit based on a termination notice for nonpayment delivered on or after January 1, 2021; (3) take any action that would interfere with a tenant's possession or use of a rental unit based on a tenant's nonpayment balance; (4) assess a late fee or any other penalty on a tenant's nonpayment balance; or (5) report a tenant's nonpayment balance as delinquent to any consumer credit reporting agency. Provides that before applying payments received from a tenant or on behalf of a tenant to a tenant's nonpayment balance, a landlord shall apply the payments in a specified order. Provides that during the emergency period, the landlord may provide a written notice to a tenant stating that the tenant continues to owe any rent due. Provides that, following the emergency period, a tenant with an outstanding nonpayment balance has a 6-month grace period that ends on January 1, 2022, to pay the outstanding nonpayment balance. Provides that the tenant shall notify the landlord of the tenant's intention to use the grace period, and failure to do so entitles the landlord to recover damages equal to 50% of one month's rent following the grace period. Provides that if a landlord violates the provisions, a tenant may obtain injunctive relief to recover possession or address any other violation and may recover from the landlord an amount up to 3 months' periodic rent plus any actual damages. Makes other changes. Effective immediately.
Sponsors
Edgar Gonzalez
Last Action
Rule 19(a) / Re-referred to Rules Committee
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-hb3510/

SB3756 DHFS-PANDEMIC FUNDS-NURSING

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Amends the Medical Assistance Article of the Illinois Public Aid Code. Provides that from funds appropriated, directly or indirectly, from moneys received by the State from the Coronavirus State Fiscal Recovery Fund for Fiscal Years 2021 and 2022, the Department of Healthcare and Family Services shall continue to expend such funds only for purposes permitted by Section 9901 of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA) and related federal guidance. Provides that such expenditures may include, but are not limited to: payments to providers for costs incurred due to the COVID-19 public health emergency; unreimbursed costs for testing and treatment of uninsured Illinois residents; and expenditures permitted in order to address (i) disparities in public health outcomes, (ii) nursing and other essential health care workforce investments, (iii) the exacerbation of pre-existing disparities, and (iv) the promotion of healthy childhood environments. Requires the Department to continue to make payments to long-term care service providers and facilities, for purposes related to financial support for the long-term care industry and front line workers, but only as permitted by Section 9901 of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. Requires nursing facilities to spend 60% of funds received as a direct pass-through to front line workers on pandemic bonus pay to employees and on temporary benefits, such as day care or other related benefits. Permits nursing facilities to spend the remaining 40% of the distributions on other financial support for their workers provided on or after December 1, 2021, or on other ARPA permitted purposes including, but not limited to: (i) the payment of education expenses to enhance direct care staff recruitment; (ii) enhanced and expanded training for nursing facility staff; and on other specified purposes. Requires providers to sign award agreements and to submit proposed monthly budgets for the use of funds prior to the release of funds. Provides that the Department shall have the authority to audit and potentially recoup funds not utilized as outlined and attested. Requires the Department to redistribute to providers any remaining, returned, or recouped funds by June 30, 2022. Effective immediately.
Sponsors
Rachelle Crowe
Last Action
Rule 3-9(a) / Re-referred to Assignments
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-sb3756/

HB5651 $FY23 DHS OCE

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Makes appropriations for the ordinary and contingent expenses of the Department of Human Services for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2022, as follows: General Funds $5,253,179,200; Other State Funds $1,272 ,689,600; Federal Funds $5,251,200,357. Total $11,767,069,157.
Sponsors
Gregory Harris Camille Lilly
Last Action
Referred to Rules Committee
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-hb5651/

HB5669 $FY23 CJIA OCE

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Makes appropriations for the ordinary and contingent expenses of the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2022, as follows: General Funds $78,350,200; Other State Funds $156,952,800; Federal Funds $228,400,000; Total $463,703,000.
Sponsors
Gregory Harris Rita Mayfield
Last Action
Referred to Rules Committee
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-hb5669/

HB5606 $FY23 ISBE OCE

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Makes appropriations for the Illinois State Board of Education and teacher retirement contributions for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2022, as follows: General Funds $16,047,214,967; Other State Funds $101,183,700; Federal Funds $10,421,681,400; Total $26,570,080,067.
Sponsors
Gregory Harris William Davis
Last Action
Referred to Rules Committee
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-hb5606/

HB5617 $FY23 DOR OCE

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Makes appropriations for the ordinary and contingent expenses of the Department of Revenue for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2022, as follows: General Funds $49,038,700; Other State Funds $2,982,866,813; Federal Funds $446,600,000; Total $3,478,505,513.
Sponsors
Gregory Harris Fred Crespo
Last Action
Referred to Rules Committee
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-hb5617/

SB4099 $FY23 DHS OCE

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Makes appropriations for the ordinary and contingent expenses of the Department of Human Services for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2022, as follows: General Funds$5,253,179,200; Other State Funds $1,272 ,689,600; Federal Funds $5,251,200,357; Total $11,767,069,157.
Sponsors
Don Harmon
Last Action
Referred to Assignments
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-sb4099/

SB4118 $FY23 DCEO OCE

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Makes appropriations for the ordinary and contingent expenses of the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2022, as follows: General Funds $ 90,607,500 Other State Funds $1,300,806,938 Federal Funds $1,934,812,049 Total $3,326,226,487
Sponsors
Don Harmon
Last Action
Referred to Assignments
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-sb4118/

HB5682 $FY23 DCEO OCE

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Makes appropriations for the ordinary and contingent expenses of the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2022, as follows: General Funds $90,607,500; Other State Funds $1,300,806,938; Federal Funds $1,934,812,049; Total $3,326,226,487.
Sponsors
Gregory Harris Fred Crespo
Last Action
Referred to Rules Committee
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-hb5682/

SB4089 $FY23 CJIA OCE

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Makes appropriations for the ordinary and contingent expenses of the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2022, as follows: General Funds $ 78,350,200 Other State Funds $156,952,800 Federal Funds $228,400,000 Total $463,703,000
Sponsors
Don Harmon
Last Action
Referred to Assignments
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-sb4089/

SB4107 $FY23 ISBE OCE

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Makes appropriations for the Illinois State Board of Education and teacher retirement contributions for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2022, as follows: General Funds $16,047,214,967 Other State Funds $ 101,183,700 Federal Funds $10,421,681,400 Total $26,570,080,067
Sponsors
Don Harmon
Last Action
Referred to Assignments
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-sb4107/

SB1559 EVICTION-BARRING PERSONS

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Amends the Eviction Article of the Code of Civil Procedure. Deletes language providing that a landlord shall have the power to bar the presence of a person from the premises owned by the landlord who is not a tenant or lessee or who is not a member of the tenant's or lessee's household. Deletes language providing that a landlord may give notice to a person that the person is barred from the premises owned by the landlord and providing criminal penalties for further trespass after the notice has been given. Provides instead that nothing precludes a landlord from exercising any rights the landlord may have under existing local, State, federal, or common law to bar from the property an individual who is not a tenant or member of the tenant's household, if that individual's presence on the property poses a direct threat to: (1) any tenant's health, safety, or right to quiet enjoyment of the premises; or (2) the health or safety of the landlord or the landlord's employees.
Sponsors
Celina Villanueva
Last Action
Rule 3-9(a) / Re-referred to Assignments
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-sb1559/

HB4059 RENTAL PROPERTY-UTILITIES

Introduced Session

102nd General Assembly

Summary
Amends the Rental Property Utility Service Act. Provides that upon the written request of a prospective tenant, the utility company shall make available to the landlord of the unit information consisting of the charges incurred at the unit for utility services for the preceding 2 years. Provides that the information shall be identified by the address of the unit, and no other information identifying the owner, tenant, or other occupant of the unit shall be used for, or made available in connection with, the furnishing of billing information. Provides that the information shall be furnished to both the landlord and to the prospective tenant.
Sponsors
Angelica Guerrero-Cuellar
Last Action
Rule 19(a) / Re-referred to Rules Committee
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2021-hb4059/

HB0670 CIVIL LAW-TECH

Introduced Session

101st General Assembly

Summary
Amends the Code of Civil Procedure. Makes a technical change in a Section concerning a lien on crops.
Sponsors
Michael Madigan
Last Action
Rule 19(a) / Re-referred to Rules Committee
View Details
https://lawsforlandlords.com/bill/il-2019-hb0670/

Must-Know Illinois Landlord-Tenant Laws

Law For Landlords

In the U.S., there are nearly 48.5 million rental units. A little over half of these rental units are owned by business entities, while the rest are owned by individual investors.

There are a lot of good reasons to own rental property in, including providing a passive income source as well as the potential for property value appreciation. Many Americans have managed to make rental property ownership their full-time job, while others might keep a few rental properties as a way of making extra income.

If you are considering becoming a landlord, you likely have a lot of questions. What regulations do landlords need to know? What should I know as a landlord in general?

Understanding landlord-tenant laws is essential for protecting yourself legally and financially. Here’s a brief guide for self-managing landlords regarding some of the most important federal and state laws.

The Fair Housing Act

The Fair Housing Act is one of the two major federal laws that impact all property managers and landlords across the country. This is a law that prohibits discrimination due to national origin, race, religion, color, disability, sex or familial status. This law applies to:

  • Renting or buying a home
  • Seeking housing assistance
  • Getting a mortgage
  • Engaging in other housing-related activities

This law extends beyond leasing where landlords are concerned. It also applies to advertising, meaning that it is illegal to market your properties to any specific group of people.

Fair Credit Reporting Act

The Fair Credit Reporting Act is a law that requires landlords to do a number of things when running a credit check. These include receiving permission from an applicant to run a credit report, informing the applicant if their credit report was the basis for adverse action or denial, and providing specific information regarding the credit reporting agency they used

Law Paint Law

It is required by landlords under federal law to disclose the presence of lead paint. They are not required to remove lead paint under federal law, but state laws might dictate otherwise. It’s important to learn about your state and municipality laws regarding lead paint in addition to the federal law.

Discrimination Law

Beyond the Federal Fair Housing Act, state and local laws might provide additional protection beyond the federal law. These might extend protections to people based on their sexual orientation, age, marital status, political association and even hairstyle.

Tenant Duties

While your tenant is responsible for some things, you should know what those things are as the landlord. Then, you can include those duties in your lease agreement. If a tenant doesn’t fulfill their duties, you may be able to provide a notice to vacate in law. Your tenants need to comply with local health and building codes to keep themselves and others safe. They also need to dispose of garbage safely and legally, and they need to use the property reasonably. That means living in the property, but unreasonable uses could include conducting business. Tenants are also responsible for keeping the property clean on a daily basis. They also can’t do anything that would disturb their neighbors, especially if you own a duplex or a similar property. A tenant must also ensure their guests also comply with these requirements. And whenever your tenant has any issues, they must notify you so that you can correct the problem.

Security Deposit Limit

Before a tenant moves in, you can charge them a security deposit. Fortunately, doesn’t have any limitations regarding the amount the deposit can be. You can set an amount based on the property’s rent or value. And you can charge a security deposit for short-term or long-term leases. Then, you can hold onto that amount for the duration of the tenant’s stay. While you can use the money from the deposit, it’s smart to keep it in a separate account. When the tenant moves out, you can make sure you have enough money to pay them back. You can outline the terms of the security deposit, such as the amount and when you will return it, in your lease agreement. That way, you and your tenant both understand the terms, and you can use similar language if you ever buy property in another state.

A Legal Lease Document

Each state and some municipalities might have laws regarding the lease contract. Rental contracts must abide by all laws and be legally written. It is necessary to indicate tenant names, monthly rental rates, and leasing periods clearly.

In some jurisdictions, it is required that certain legal disclosures be included in the lease document. Working with a lawyer to produce your rental contract can help ensure that the lease provides all of the required information and doesn’t break any federal, state, or local laws.

Required Disclosures

It is common in many states to require landlords to inform tenants about individual landlord policies, certain state laws, or specific information about the rental. It might be required that this is disclosed within the lease itself or in additional documentation.

It’s important to look into your state’s requirements about disclosures. However, some commonly required disclosures include notice of recent deaths, mold, meth contamination, or other safety or health hazards.

Providing a Safe Environment

One important landlord-tenant law has to do with the habitability of the rental unit. The definition of “safe, habitable condition” might be different between states. For this reason, you must familiarize yourself with the laws for landlords in your location.

Typically, this means that the property cannot have serious deficiencies. It also means that fixtures, appliances, heating, and plumbing need to be in working order. You also cannot rent out a property that is infested with pests or insects.

 Landlords are usually responsible for dealing with infestations even if the outbreak happens after the tenant moves in. However, in many states, this can be avoided by specifying that the renter is responsible for pest control.

Laws About Making Repairs

In the lease agreement, it will be outlined that the tenants are responsible for reporting necessary repairs. It then becomes the landlord’s responsibility to complete the repairs within an appropriate amount of time.

If a landlord doesn’t make a repair in a timely manner in a way that impacts the safety or health of a tenant, a tenant might have the right to withhold rent.

Security Deposits

It is common for landlords to require a security deposit from the tenant. This is in order to cover the costs of any damage the tenant causes or if they fail to pay rent. A landlord must refund the security deposit unless it is needed to cover the cost of fixing property damage or covering default rent payments.

In some states, how the security deposit is kept is dictated by the law. It is also typically required that an itemized list of deductions must be provided to the tenant if the landlord is using some of the deposit for these purposes.

The unused portion of the deposit must be returned and the itemized statement must be provided. If they aren’t, the landlord can face financial and legal repercussions.

Renters Right To Privacy

Most landlord-tenant rules and regulations cover the right to quiet enjoyment of a tenant. This means that it is their right to live on a property undisturbed. The landlord must give proper notice before entering the rental unit, which is usually 24 to 48 hours unless there is an emergency.

Landlords can only enter the rental property for valid reasons and at a reasonable time of day after giving notice.

Landlord-Tenant Laws: Essential For Protecting Yourself Legally and Financially

Without a good understanding of landlord-tenant laws, you can find yourself in a mess of legal and financial trouble. It’s therefore very important to familiarize yourself with the federal, state, and local laws regarding the rights of tenants and the responsibilities of landlords.

Are you looking for more valuable resources to serve as a guide for self-managing landlords? You can find more resources and guides here.

Reviewing Laws for Landlords

Understanding laws for landlords is essential for keeping your properties up and running. It can also protect you and your finances if you have a problematic tenant or experience other issues. Whether you just bought your first rental property or are looking to expand, you should understand how these laws affect you. That way, you won’t have to worry about losing everything. Do you want to learn more about laws for landlords? Let us know.

Please understand that because of the nature of the topic, this page has been written in a generalized form. Further guidance should be sought on the topic being searched by the landlord.

Illinois Landlord Legislation Blog

Governor’s Latest Executive Order

KEY FACTS: Issued:  October 15, 2020
Expires:  November 14, 2020 Caveat:
Late Fee Prohibition Remains in Effect
Through December 31, 2020 KEY ISSUES:
Rent Demands: Extends 30-day rent
demand until November 14th The 30-day
rent demand applies to ALL Landlords
(residential and commercial). Late Fees:
The Order establishes a ban […]

Governor’s Latest Executive Order

KEY FACTS: Issued:  October 15, 2020
Expires:  November 14, 2020 Caveat:
Late Fee Prohibition Remains in Effect
Through December 31, 2020 KEY ISSUES:
Rent Demands: Extends 30-day rent
demand until November 14th The 30-day
rent demand applies to ALL Landlords
(residential and commercial). Late Fees:
The Order establishes a ban […]

Governor’s Latest Executive Order

KEY FACTS: Issued:  October 15, 2020
Expires:  November 14, 2020 Caveat:
Late Fee Prohibition Remains in Effect
Through December 31, 2020 KEY ISSUES:
Rent Demands: Extends 30-day rent
demand until November 14th The 30-day
rent demand applies to ALL Landlords
(residential and commercial). Late Fees:
The Order establishes a ban […]

Eviction Moratorium Ends

Time to Focus on Rental Assistance Breaking News August 27, 2021 The U.S. Supreme Court ended the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC’s) eviction moratorium Thursday night, giving much-needed relief to America’s small housing providers facing financial hardship for more than a year. In a 6-3 ruling, a majority of justices agreed that the stay on the lower court’s order finding the CDC’s eviction moratorium to be unlawful was no longer justified. In their order, the justices wrote, “The

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A Guide to Section 8 for Landlords

Over 10 million Americans are afforded federal rental assistance under a program known as Section 8 housing. This federal rental assistance can be used all over the United States, which means that all US landlords should have a basic understanding of what Section 8 is and how it works. In short, Section 8 housing provides a solution for low-income families and individuals who are in need of housing. But how does Section 8 housing work for landlords? If you’ve poked around online

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Pros and Cons of Month-to-Month Rental Leases

The real estate market is in a particularly unusual state in 2021 as the overall economy seeks to correct itself during an ongoing pandemic. One of the more surprising results of the past year is that while housing prices are going up, the cost to rent is, in many places, going down or stabilizing. Now is a great time for property owners to analyze the kind of leasing agreements they typically offer. Is month-to-month rental a better solution in the present,

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A Guide to Squatter Rights- What Landlords Absolutely Need to Know

If you’re a landlord who has recently discovered the presence of unknown tenants living in one of your properties, you’re probably wondering what to do next. Is this trespassing? Can you simply kick them out? The answer is not quite so simple, assuming these unexpected tenants are squatters. We tend to think of squatters in basic, colloquial terms: people who have moved into a property they don’t own or rent and live there without permission. However, you’ve probably also heard

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A Complete Guide to Every Step in the Eviction Process

As a landlord, your hope is to bring on high-quality tenants that abide by the lease and pay rent on time each month. However, you might be surprised at how likely it is that you could find yourself going through the eviction process at some point in your tenure. In the past few years, US eviction data was compiled and revealed just how common evictions actually are. In fact, in 2016 alone, 2.3 million evictions were filed in America. Our goal is

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The Landlord’s Guide to Rent Collection

There are over 10 million individual landlords in the United States, each with its own methods for rent collection. How a landlord collects rent, what they charge, and how they deal with late payments has to do both with their personal preferences and the laws in their state. Renting is a great way to earn side money or even a full liveable income, but there are many things to consider before you begin looking for tenants. If you have a property you’re interested

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