I think my apartment is illegal, how can I tell?

Asked by Lydia Williams, Chicago, IL Mon Oct 14, 2013

clue rent 1250/month all utilities, no light, gas, or water meter, my apartment has flooded several times from the floor and the roof. Comcast and post office does not recognize the address, they called the city and was told there is no record of this address. So damn confused anybody help please.

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Jacqueline S…, Agent, Chicago, IL
Mon Oct 14, 2013
Certificate of occupancy from the city, bring in a city building inspector, but you may never see you security deposit again. What are you trying to accomplish, get out of the lease, get the apartment legal, get some upgrades, get reimbursed for your flood damaged belongings? If you are happy, ignorance it bliss, get a PO Box.
2 votes
Annette Law…, Agent, Palm Harbor, FL
Mon Oct 14, 2013
Way below market rent.
NO contract.
Off the grid.
For many this is the only affordable housing available.
Proceed with caution.
1 vote
JIM Michaels, Agent, Chicago, IL
Tue Oct 15, 2013
ask the neighbors they know everything
0 votes
Geralyn Hops…, Agent, Chicago, IL
Tue Oct 15, 2013
Hi Lydia

It would be helpful if you got a lawyer to look into this for you. It's odd that the post office does not recognize the address.

You can go to http://www.cookcountyassessor.com and search by address for the property. Searching by address will give you the pin number to the property. With the pin you can go to http://www.ccrd.info (cook county recorder of deeds) and look up the actual owner of the property.

I would be happy to assist you with this problem in its beginning stages. Ultimately, you may have to contract with a lawyer, in Illinois there are tenants rights which are very strong.

Please call me if you have any questions

Geralyn Hopson
312 933 4121
0 votes
Toole Law Of…, , Chicago, IL
Tue Oct 15, 2013
As a way to start, go to the city Zoning office, and see how many units the property is zoned for. Also, you may be entitled to receive money damages from the landlord if s/he actually rented you an illegal apartment. Call our office for further assistance 773-684-5730. We can also assist you with breaking your lease and getting back your security deposit.

Arnold Toole
Toole Law Office, LLC

No attorney-client relationship is created by this posting.
0 votes
Daniel Mirea, Agent, chicago, IL
Mon Oct 14, 2013
Is that a garden apartment?
0 votes
Bill J Delig…, Agent, Naperville, IL
Mon Oct 14, 2013
Start looking for alternative housing options and if you really want to know, ask your landlord and the city.
0 votes
Manuel Brown, Agent, Chicago, IL
Mon Oct 14, 2013

Jacqueline answered your question GREAT.
0 votes
Ivan Sagel, Agent, Chicago, IL
Mon Oct 14, 2013

I would move out before you get flooded out. You can ask your landlord for a zoning cert, but I think you know what that will say...

Best regards,

Ivan Sagel
0 votes
Santiago Ken…, Agent, Chicago, IL
Mon Oct 14, 2013
That's no enough to be illegal ...plus if the aprtment has all that problems ...try to move to another location or talk with the landlord
0 votes
David Hanna, Agent, Chicago, IL
Mon Oct 14, 2013
There is really no way for you to find out without putting yourself in the position to be packing up and vacating on the spot when the unit is inspected and your fears are confirmed.
Your best bet is to start looking for another place, if the unit is illegal, it will be declared uninhabitable by the city immediately and you will need to go at the same time.
0 votes
Joe Schiller, Agent, Chicago, IL
Mon Oct 14, 2013
hummm lets look at the clues.. you pay rent for a house and not a boat..and defiantly not a leaky boat so flooding is not part of the deal..and clue number two.. your off the grid..they might be a landing alien aircraft at the location..or maybe even part of an underground railroad system for people bringing in fake Cuban cigars or unlicensed Disney films.. I would make a run for it
0 votes
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