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Old 31.05.2021, 20:24
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Re: Washing machine installation

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Making "structural changes to the rented flat" definitely requires permission from the landlord.

The reason that the issue of washing-machines involves tenants and landlords in disputes and possibly in Court, is probably similar to the arguments in this thread. Some say that installing a washing machine is no big deal, just plug the thing into electricity and water, and others say it is quite a big step, and as such enough of an alteration to count as a "sructural change to the rented flat". This difference in perspective has partly to do with a historical change, in that washing-machines were previously unusual so installing one could involve breaking down walls, and partly to do with the technical skills of the people who want to install one, and probably also partly to do with one's experiences, good and bad, with landlords.

The Tenants' Association of the German-speaking recommends getting permission, in writing, from the landlord.
Brauche ich die Zustimmung des Vermieters, wenn ich in meiner Wohnung eine eigene Waschmaschine installieren will?
Das ist eine Streitfrage. Für bauliche Veränderungen an der Mietwohnung benötigen Sie gemäss Art. 260a OR die schriftliche Zustimmung des Vermieters.

Die Frage ist nun, ob man bei der Installation einer modernen Waschmaschine von einer baulichen Veränderung reden kann. Abänderungen an den Sanitäranlagen sind dazu heutzutage kaum mehr nötig.

Zu berücksichtigen sind aber auch der allenfalls erhöhte Wasserverbrauch, den andere Mieter über die Nebenkosten mitfinanzieren, und allfällige Lärmemissionen. Insofern kann die Installation einer eigenen Waschmaschine schon Auswirkungen auf die gesamte Liegenschaft haben.

Vorsichtshalber sollten Sie also die Zustimmung des Vermieters oder der Verwaltung einholen.

Wichtig ist auch, dass Sie über eine Haftpflichtversicherung verfügen, die bei einem allfälligen Wasserschaden aufkommen würde. Der Abschluss einer Privathaftpflichtversicherung ist aber ohnehin allen Leuten zu empfehlen.

Do I need permission from my landlord if I want to install my own washing machine in my flat?

This is a matter of dispute. According to Art. 260a OR, you need the written consent of the landlord for structural changes to the rented flat.

The question now is whether the installation of a modern washing machine can be considered a structural change. Modifications to the plumbing installations are hardly necessary nowadays.

However, one must also take into account the increased water consumption that other tenants may have to pay for via the service charges, and any noise emissions. In this respect, installing your own washing machine can have an impact on the entire property.

As a precaution, you should therefore obtain the consent of the landlord or the administration.

It is also important that you have liability insurance that would cover any water damage. However, taking out personal liability insurance is recommended for everyone anyway.
Useful, thanks.

The part about water consumption doesn't make much sense though - it's fair to assume that the total amount of washing done will remain fairly similar, but will move from a communal machine to a private one. Probably the private one is newer and more efficient as well.
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