Take Action: Oppose Cook County’s Proposed RTLO

UPDATE 12/15/2020: Thank you for taking the time to voice your opposition to Cook County’s proposed RTLO. The vote on this proposal has been delayed 30 days, and conversations among the impacted groups will continue to make the proposal more balanced. However, the following modifications to the proposal that we requested were included in the proposal:
  • Those that are exempt from the RTLO
    1. If occupancy is limited to six units or less, that are owner-occupied.
    2. Single-family homes, or single condominium unit that is not owned or managed by a company. The owner or family member resided in the property within the last 12 months.
  • Clarity on the move-in fees. A landlord may charge a move-in fee but it has to be reasonably related to the landlord’s cost for the tenant moving into the unit.
  • A landlord that is not responsible for paying utility costs will provide the data IF costs are known.
  • Clarity that landlords are not responsible to provide internet access to tenants unless it is in the rental agreement.
  • If the tenant is not in material compliance with the rental agreement, the lease will be terminated in 10 days (originally 30 days).
  • Tenant notification of the possible presence of bed bugs within 48 hours (which was changed from 5 days).
  • A landlord has a cure period to provide a summary of the Ordinance if they failed to do so.
  • A landlord has a cure period for administrative oversight of security deposits.

UPDATE 12/10/2020: After three weeks of negotiations, we received very minor amendments to this ordinance. Because of this, the Illinois REALTORS® shared this memo with Commissioners requesting reasonable updates to be made to the ordinance. A new call for action was released as the Cook County Board is preparing for a vote on this proposal in the next week.

Take one minute to let your elected officials know that amendments need to be made to this proposal!

We need you to take immediate, quick action to avoid negative restrictions and requirements for housing providers.


Two members of the Cook County Board have introduced a Residential Tenant and Landlord Ordinance (RTLO), which regulates the relationship between the tenant and landlord. This proposal’s provisions grant a host of new rights and remedies to tenants, and it imposes several new responsibilities and duties on landlords, including:
  • Limits on late rental fee payments to $10 per month.
  • Disclosure to prospective tenants of utility costs for the previous 12 months.
  • Additional habitability requirements, beyond building city code requirements.
  • Tenant “right to cure” non-payment of rent before judge orders eviction.
  • Landlord storage of tenant’s personal items if the tenant vacates a unit.
  • Non-lease renewal notice of 90 days.
  • Landlord disclosure of code violations to prospective tenants for the previous 12 months.
  • Prohibiting charges of other “fees,” such as move-in fees.
View our RTLO issue summary here. Several municipalities in and around Cook County already regulate rental properties through pre-rental occupancy inspections, crime-free ordinances and landlord licensure. Now, on top of these existing laws, the County wants to regulate leases and your relationship with your tenant. Landlords have worked with tenants on payment plans and reduced fees, amongst other measures, and the eviction moratorium has severely limited landlords’ ability to enforce agreed-upon lease terms, and many landlords are worried about foreclosure and debt payments as a result of the pandemic.


We’ve made it easy for you. Click here to send a note to your elected officials and tell them why you oppose the RTLO. By doing so, you are standing up for Cook County and protecting our industry. Don’t wait!

Take Action Now!