Chicago Heat Ordinance
The Department of Buildings enforces the Chicago Minimum Requirements for Existing Buildings (Title 14X of the Municipal Code), which includes the Chicago Heat Ordinance. The Heat Ordinance requires that during cold weather months landlords supply heat to rental units where occupants do not have individual control of the heat. The Heat Ordinance also requires that landlords maintain individual unit heating equipment in operating condition, but tenants may be required to pay the associated utility bills.
From September 15 through June 1, the temperature inside a rental residence is required to be at least 68 degrees Fahrenheit from 8:30 AM to 10:30 PM and at least 66 degrees Fahrenheit from 10:30 PM to 8:30 AM.
Landlords face fines of up to $1,000 per day, per violation, for each day they do not supply adequate heat. The reason for lack of heat does not matter -- landlords must follow the law, and apartments must be heated.
If you are a renter and your landlord is not providing adequate heat or no heat at all, you may file a complaint via CHI 311 website or mobile app or by calling 311. The Department of Buildings will inspect your unit and we will take action against delinquent owners.