The security deposit is not money that your landlord should keep after you move out
  • you moved out owing rent; or
  • you damaged some of part of the apartment.

In Chicago and Evanston, the security deposit which the landlord is holding is actually the property of the tenant. Within 30 days of moving out, the landlord should notify you, in writing, whether he or she is going to make any deductions from your security deposit for repairs for damages you caused. If the landlord does not notify you of damages, then the landlord is obligated to return the security deposit within 45 days of your moving out. If the landlord notifies you of the estimated cost of repairs, he or she has an additional 30 days to furnish you with paid receipts. In Evanston, the landlord has 21 days to make deductions and must return the security deposit within 21 days. 

If your landlord has:

  1. not returned your deposit after you moved; or
  2. failed to pay interest on your security deposit; or
  3. unfairly claimed your deposit for repairs; or
  4. only returned part of your deposit

you need to phone us, we can help you: (773) 478-1133.

[The Illinois Tenants Union is not a law firm or legal services corporation; however, our executive director is a licensed Illinois attorney. And, we also have relationships with other experienced attorneys who will legally represent tenants should the need arise.]

If you have any questions or would like more information, or to discuss your rights please contact us (773) 478-1133, email us, or use our online request form.

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