Chicago landlord-tenant legal question

Can a landlord in Chicago legally refuse to allow the original tenant on a lease to have an additional person move into the apartment? The lease has a provision that “the apartment shall be inhabited by one person,” and the Chicago Residential Landlord-Tenant Ordinance doesn’t appear to say anything on the subject, but I’m not sure whether such a prohibition is legal, even if written into the lease.

If you can’t get a definitive answer here, I suggest contacting the Illinois Tenants Union ( They might just tell you, but they might want you to come in. If you need help fighting your landlord, ITU will probably charge you half a month’s rent.

Well, I haven’t actually talked to my landlord yet, and there might not be a problem at all. However, they have done some goofy and illegal things in the past, so I was hoping to know my rights before calling them. (And I’ve worked with the ITU in the past, and they have indeed been quite helpful.)

ETA: I suppose I should just bite the bullet and call them. Sigh…

Update: the management company couldn’t have cared less. All they wanted to know was a) did I want his name on the doorbell, and b) did I want his name on the lease.

I do still want to know the actual answer to the OP, though, if anyone is so inclined.

I don’t know squat about Illinois law, or about what they actually restrict landlords from doing. I remember learning back in Property Law that it was legal for a landlord to set reasonable limits on the number of people living in an apartment, although they were not constitutionally permitted to discriminate on the basis of family status (so a landlord could say that no more than two people were permitted in a particular apartment, but could not say that it had to be a married couple or that it couldn’t be a parent and child). But I think Illinois would be free to say that landlords couldn’t set limits on the number of people living in a space - I just don’t know if they actually have (it seems unlikely but possible).

Well, if that were the case, they wouldn’t have a leg to stand on - all the apartments in this building are one-bedrooms, and it would be more than a little goofy to say that you can’t have 2 people living in a one-bedroom apartment. Especially when about half the apartments in the building are already inhabited by 2 people.