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If a lease is silent on a topic, that silence might be to the tenant’s detriment.  Generally, under Illinois case law, a commercial landlord has no duty to make repairs during the term of a lease unless contractually obligated to do so in the lease.  Therefore unless your lease provides in writing otherwise, your landlord is not responsible for maintaining and repairing your premises.  If a lease provides that the tenant is responsible for maintaining and repairing its premises, this may give rise to the tenant being obligated to make costly improvements to comply with building code and the Americans with Disabilities Act.  If your landlord is obligated to make repairs or alterations to the premises, it should be clear who is responsible for paying for them.  You will not want to pay for a new HVAC unit in the last year of your lease.  Your lease should clearly identify each party’s rights, obligations and expenses.

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