Chris Robins…,  in Chicago, IL

I just bought a foreclosed 2 flat in Chicago with basement apartment. Can I legally rent out the basement apartment? If not, what do I have to do?

Asked by Chris Robinson, Chicago, IL Fri Nov 6, 2009

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You can always rent out the basement, IF it is a Legal basement! I believe that that ceiling has to be 7 feet or more and you need to have all the other codes up to part. Chicago Housing Court can be a serious headache!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 8, 2009
Gun Shy,

Since you bought your property as a foreclosure, most likely you didn't have any type of disclosures or guarantees about the number of legal units. A simple bit of research from your Realtor/Lawyer should tell you whether or not you have a "Legal 3" or a "Legal 2" unit. However many legal units your new property has, is how many you should rent out. There are many people who, for lack of a better term, "slumlord" and rent out non-legal units. As with any illegal activity the choice is up to the individual, however you may want to research the implications of liability of breaking said law. That said, some people in your position, rent out the two legal units and live in the non-legal unit themselves. This may be an option for you as you take all the risk onto yourself. This is by no means a recommendation! Be safe, not sorry!
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 8, 2009
You should find out if the apartment is a legal unit or not. That should have been revealed prior to closing on the property. If it's legal, by all means go ahead and rent it out. If it is not a legally recognized unit, you should not. Your attorney that you worked with would really be your best source to answer this question.

Good Luck
Danielle Pierce
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 2, 2009
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