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Old 13.06.2010, 19:57
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Sample letter of self-introduction to a landlord

Hi all, I need to find an apartment in Zurich and I've been strongly advised to produce a letter of introduction where I should praise Switzerland, Zurich and basically bow down, kiss ass and claim that I'm the quietest, bestest tenant of all time and my only fault is that I wasn't born in this place.

I've lived in several countries and never faced this before so does anyone have a template people like me could use ?

I think many folk would benefit from such a resource.

Thank you.
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Old 13.06.2010, 20:05
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Re: Sample letter of self-introduction to a landlord

Never heard of this, except for a basic covering letter highlighting why you would be the ideal tenant. There is no need to patronise any potential landlord ( if you manage to know him / her - most are managed by agencies ).
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Old 13.06.2010, 20:39
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Re: Sample letter of self-introduction to a landlord

We got our employer's administrator to write a letter of reference on the employer's letterhead...

Basically it says,

I would like to write on behalf of X. They have a permanent work contract with us and have been working since XYZ. They are seeking an apartment with X number of rooms, for their family including (3) children...no pets ;-)

Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions in response to this reference.

Sincerely,

ABC.

We also got one that explained we were a family of 5, our current apartment was being demolished, we had permanent work/residency contracts for Switzerland, and we were looking for XYZ size apartment to move between A and B dates...

Both documents really did help our application - we were offered all of the 5 apartments we applied for! Maybe it was the 'sob story' (family with three kids who had to move because our apartment was being demolished)...but it definitely wasn't anything about loving switzerland or too patronising...
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Old 13.06.2010, 20:40
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Re: Sample letter of self-introduction to a landlord

I would not do such a letter.
I got my flat, sending a cv , my labor certificates and the work contract.
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Old 13.06.2010, 20:47
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Re: Sample letter of self-introduction to a landlord

The more I read posts around bad landlords the more I realise how incredibly lucky we have been!

We did meet your landlord face to face, we were actually invited to stay for dinner the evening we went to sign the contract .... and the only "nuisance" they have ever imposed on us was to keep on asking how we wanted the rooms decorated as they were redoing the place before we moved in. Fabulous people and I only hope we'll do the place justice for the duration we're in.

Oh, yes, and we did provide employment proof but that was more to do with solvency which I believe is common practice everywhere so that you're actually able to afford the rent rather than anything else.

Perhaps we need to sometime hear the good stories as too often only the horrid ones get to our attention.

Good luck in getting the place you want!
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Old 13.06.2010, 20:49
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Re: Sample letter of self-introduction to a landlord

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We got our employer's administrator to write a letter of reference on the employer's letterhead...

...
I work for an international 'name' company and the HR already provided a similar letter of reference.

On top of that they said I need to prepare a strong intro and praise all things-Swiss. I just don't want to go over the top.


PS The whole thing is so false. HR provided a reference for prospective landlords before I had even met HR so they were in no position to do that (obviously I'm grateful to have it). The Kreisburo letter stating I have no debt history after only living here 2 weeks ! And the CV? Well ... that just shows what the employer wants to read.
I guess Zuricher landlords still believe in Father Christmas and the Tooth Fairy too.
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Old 13.06.2010, 20:53
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Re: Sample letter of self-introduction to a landlord

and very important is a letter from your origin , that you have no debts there either and get a credit from the bank if you need one.
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Old 13.06.2010, 20:57
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Re: Sample letter of self-introduction to a landlord

You have to understand that demand far outstrips the supply, and therefore landlords through their agents can afford to select the right tenant for the property in question. Think of it as applying for that dream job, short of praising / patronising your potential employer.

They'd ideally be looking for someone who can easily pay up the rents on time and in the proper manner, have a decent command of DE to understand the house rules ( Hausordnung ), quiet non-aggressive type and can blend in with the rest of the neighbours with ease as well as the length of the permit. Factors that might be taken into account are marital status / children, EU / non-EU and so forth.

All the best in your quest for that apartment.

This is one link that you might find useful - modify to your needs.
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Old 13.06.2010, 21:03
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Re: Sample letter of self-introduction to a landlord

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and very important is a letter from your origin , that you have no debts there either and get a credit from the bank if you need one.

I haven't lived in my home country for 14 years and lived in 7 countries in that time so not sure what paper would have any value ?

I'm not sure there is such a thing (in UK) as an authority who can state "Mr X has no debts". There are at least thousands of possible places one could owe money to. So what use is a letter from one bank or one source ?

Credit from a bank ? Not sure what this is. A bank statement ? I have the princely sum of CHF 0.00 banked in my new account in Switzerland. At least it isn't a debt



[As an aside: there is nothing inherently wrong with debt. Empires, great business ventures and all massive infrastucture projects depended on debt or wouldn't have happened.]
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Old 13.06.2010, 21:15
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Re: Sample letter of self-introduction to a landlord

The debt free certification from your current place Gemeinde / Kreisburo ( CHF17 for the betreibungsauskunft) is mandatory for your landlord. It must be submitted with each application for tenancy, even though one has been here for only 8 days.

Related thread is here.
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Old 13.06.2010, 21:16
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Re: Sample letter of self-introduction to a landlord

We were not asked for any record of debt from our home country...

Although it sounds simple, you'd be surprised how many people cannot get the right paperwork together...
- correct residency documents
- debt
- legitimate work contract
- above average salary to support the size of your family
- reference from the employer

I know back home it would be hard to find anyone who does not have at least $5000 racked up on credit cards and another $20,000 or more on a car loan, with probably a string of small debts like unpaid mobile phone bills or 'interest free' loan items that have now become interest bearing debts...
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Old 13.06.2010, 21:18
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Re: Sample letter of self-introduction to a landlord

The meaning of origin is the place/city from where you relocated to zurich(or
where are you currently living).
Not the place where you grown up.
The agency in germany which is doing such letters is called the schufa, here in switzerland is called betreibungsauskunft.
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Old 13.06.2010, 21:24
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Re: Sample letter of self-introduction to a landlord

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Hi all, I need to find an apartment in Zurich and I've been strongly advised to produce a letter of introduction where I should praise Switzerland, Zurich and basically bow down, kiss ass and claim that I'm the quietest, bestest tenant of all time and my only fault is that I wasn't born in this place.

I've lived in several countries and never faced this before so does anyone have a template people like me could use ?

I think many folk would benefit from such a resource.

Thank you.
I have never had clients write a letter of introduction. No Swiss person would do this....why should you? I don't know who advised you to do that. The application form should be completed in as much detail as possible, including your HR contact and phone number to verify your employment and salary and permit status. A letter from HR can't hurt, but forget the CV. Even if you have not been here long enough to have debt, go get a copy of your debt registry. It is standard to attach the original (keep a copy for yourself but you have a right to have the original returned to you). As for other debts outside the country, well, if it is a debt that can be collected here, it is relevant, but otherwise, just say you have no debts.

A reference from a previous landlord is very useful. If you have moved around a lot, you must have at least one so do provide that. That will speak better for you than writing a letter of intro yourself. Most landlords I know would see that as silly.

The competition for apartments in Zürich is tough even for Swiss nationals. Good luck finding a place.
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