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Old 10.11.2014, 13:34
Urs Max Urs Max is offline
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Re: Notice period for apartment [Kundigungsfrist]: moving out before the 3 months not

A termination notice by the landlord (the main tenant in your case) must be sent(link in german) by registered mail (eingeschrieben) and on the official form. You are free to accept a spoken notice, but without anything in writing it's difficult to prove stuff.

A sublease for single rooms has a 2-week notice period, for an apartment it's 3 months. If you were renting the full apartment your erliest possible termination date would have been 31Jan, assuming you had a standard contract (and subject to additional restrictions mentioned in your lease contract), and further assuming you accept the termination in its present form - see legal requirements above. If the main contract would have run out before yours the main tenant would have been breaching his contractual duties towards you. Thus it's important for you to know when the main lease would have run out - contact the landlord if you don't know.

With a standard lease contract that's been given notice but is still running, if the tenant presents a successor who is willing to take over, the tenant can demand to be let out of the contract early. Since the main tenant arranged/asked for the meeting of the three of you it's an obvious assumption that he wanted exactly that. And the landlord appears to have assumed same, or else he wouldn't have asked when you want your contract to start.

If, on the other hand, the main tenant had intended to simply let the contract run out the tenants' presence at the meeting, let alone the meeting itself, would have been unecessary. And saying the start date was a matter between you and the landlord would have been ridiculous as the only reasonable start date in such a case would be immediately after the main contract has run out.

So the conclusion that the main tenant wanted out early is quite natural.

The way you present it the case seems quite clear. You may want to talk to the landlord first thing to see if he agrees with you, and if he would confirm your position if necessary. Then maybe see if you can arrive at some agreement with the main tenant - after all, it seems you were having an ok relationship.
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