Can My Landlord Enter My Apartment without My Permission?

Can My Landlord Enter My Apartment without My Permission?

Last updated: August 2015

When Can a Landlord Enter my Apartment?

A landlord can enter an apartment at reasonable times. The Chicago Residential Landlord and Tenant Ordinance states that a landlord’s entry into an apartment between 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. is reasonable. The landlord must give you written or oral notice 2 days prior to entry.

The landlord may enter the apartment without prior notice when:

  • There is an emergency. 
  • The landlord unexpectedly needs to go into your apartment to make repairs elsewhere in the building.

If the landlord enters without notice, the landlord must give you notice within 2 days after the entry.

A landlord may also have access to show the apartment to prospective renters, but not before 60 days prior to expiration of your lease.

Can I Move Out?

You may give notice to end the lease if the landlord makes:

  • An unlawful entry;
  • A lawful entry that is unreasonable manner; or
  • More than one unreasonable demand for entry.

You should keep a record showing the time, date and circumstances of the landlord’s entries into your apartment.

You must give a written notice of termination to the landlord. The notice must specify why the entries may you want to end the lease. The notice must also state that the rental agreement will end in 14 days after the landlord’s gets the notice, unless the landlord stops the conduct in question.

If the landlord continues the conduct within the 14 days, you should send another written notice ending the lease. If the landlord stops conduct in the 14 days, you cannot end the lease. You must move out 30 days after the time specified in the original notice.

Send the notice and letter by certified mail with  a return receipt. You should consult a lawyer if you want to end your lease. You could be responsible for rent due under the lease if you do not follow the correct procedures.

What if I Don’t Want to Move Out?

You can ask a judge to order the landlord to stop entering your apartment.  You can also ask for damages equal to the greater of one month’s rent or twice the amount of actual damages.

You must show that the landlord has made an unlawful entry. You should hire a lawyer if you want to bring a lawsuit.

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