Illinois Rental Lease Agreements
The Illinois Rental Lease Agreements are legal contracts that comprise of provisions related to landlord-tenant relationships. Each agreement must reflect any relevant federal and state laws, meaning that agreements will generally encompass, at minimum, the following matters:
- Rent Amount ($);
- Lease Term (excluding Month-to-Month);
- Property Description;
- Utility Responsibilities; and
Both landlords and tenants should be mindful that while Illinois state law is silent on numerous matters concerning residential property leases, some cities or municipalities have more specific rental laws stipulated.
What is an Illinois Lease Agreement?
An Illinois Lease Agreement covers key matters pertaining to the rental of a residential property. The agreement not only indicates what legal obligations and rights a landlord has, it also does so for tenants of the leased property. Finding an ideal tenant can be a complicated process, which is why a rental application form is a particularly beneficial document for landlords to make use of.
State Definition: No state definition.
Types of Agreements
College Roommate Agreement – To avoid confusion about the responsibilities of each roommate in a college dorm, this agreement should be drafted and signed by all roommates.
Commercial Lease Agreement – A document that provides legal scope for the rental of a property for commercial purposes, as opposed to for residential purposes.
Lease to Own Agreement – Landlords who are willing to grant tenants’ request to purchase their rental property should use this document to formalize the proceedings.
Month-to-Month Lease – Stipulates conditions allowing for the month-to-month lease of a rental property.
Roommate Agreement – Created between roommates, this document has both non-legally binding elements, such as cleaning duties, and legally-binding elements, such as the payment of utilities.
Standard Residential Lease Agreement – A required legal document for landlords in Illinois to lease their residential property.
Sublease Agreement – Outlines legal terms and conditions for the sublease of a rental property.
When is Rent Due?
There is no state law specifying when rent is due. By implication, rent is due on the date specified in the lease agreement. There is no grace period offered by state law.
Emergency: There is no statute specifying conditions relating to landlord access to the property in the event of an emergency. However, landlords of all states are able to enter at any time during an emergency.
Non-Emergency: State law is silent on landlord entry in non-emergency situations. As such, landlord entry in non-emergency situations must be specified in the lease agreement in order for a landlord to legally enter the property.
N.B. Landlords of properties located in the city of Chicago are subject to the Chicago Residential Landlord Tenant Ordinance, Section 5-12-050. This ordinance dictates that landlords may enter a leased property for a number of reasons including to make repairs and supply services that are necessary or have been agreed upon. Entry should be made at a reasonable time i.e. between 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m, and notice of the intent to enter must be given no less than two (2) days prior.
- Concession Granted (765 ILCS 730): The lease must make mention of any rent concessions given. The landlord should ensure that the lease bears, “a legend across the face and text thereof plainly legible and in letters not less than one-half inch in height consisting of the words “Concession Granted,” and to bear a memorandum on the margin or across the face of such lease stating the amount or extent and nature of each such concession.”
- Lead Paint Disclosure: It is the legal responsibility of the landlord to disclose any lead paint hazards in leased properties constructed prior to 1978. Landlords are also required to provide tenants with a pamphlet concerning this matter.
- Locks (765 ILCS 705/15): Landlords must change locks with every new tenant, and sign a disclosure that they have fulfilled this obligation.
- Notice of Foreclosure (735 ILCS 5/9-207.5): Landlords are required to provide tenants with at least ninety (90) days written notice when the property is facing foreclosure.
- Radon (420 ILCS 46): If a landlord of a dwelling unit located below the third story above ground level discovers through testing that the unit contains radon, they must disclose in writing to the tenant the existence of a radon hazard in the dwelling unit.
- Shared Meter (765 ILCS 740/5): Landlords of properties that require tenants to pay for a portion of a master utility must provide tenants with the formula used to calculate the public utility payments among the tenants.
Security Deposit Laws
Maximum: State law does not dictate a cap for the amount a landlord may demand for a security deposit.
Returning to Tenant (765 ILCS 710/1(a)): Landlords must return the security deposit in full within forty-five (45) days of the date that the tenant vacated the property. They are required to deliver the deposit either in person or by postmarked mail.