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Old 22.09.2009, 11:12
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Re: Is this normal? [death and debt in Switzerland]

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I am sorry about your loss.

To your point, another example when you take out a morgage in Switzerland, you do so for 100 years- obviously beyond your lifetime. You benefit greatly from this becuase it reduces your amorization to a very low level. On the other hand when you die your next of kin will be held responsible.

It cuts both ways.

That's not exactly how it works. Most mortgages in Switzerland are interest only (this is why you have to pony 20% down). My fixed mortgage is for 5 years only, when it comes due again in 2012 we will have to negotiate a new mortgage where the new mortgage is used to pay off the old one. When it comes due I can choose to use any of my own funds and/or pension, 3. Säule, etc. also to pay off part of the old mortgage which will make my new mortgage lower.

Sorry for dragging this OT and condolences for your loss.
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Old 22.09.2009, 11:46
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Re: Is this normal? [death and debt in Switzerland]

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My mother passed away last year in Lausanne (which is partially why I joined this forum to understand better this exotic country).

She was renting an apartment. When that happened, I had the apartment emptied and professionally detailed.
I sent a letter, keys, and death certificate to the leasing agency.
They responded by telling me that I was liable for an extra 2 months of rent. I was a bit surprised but what can you do. I paid.
During those 2 months they did nothing. They left the apartment empty and did not advertise it anywhere. Even not on their website.

1) When there is a death, I was expecting them to waive the 2 months as a courtesy.
2) Regardless of 1) During the 2 extra months I had to pay, why didn't they try to rent the place?

This is old story but I would still want to know your opinions.
I am sorry for your loss. A private owner may have shown more compassion under the circumstances, particularly if he or she knew your mother personally.

I am sure that sorting out your late mother's affairs from a distance was quite a challenge and you have gained some insight into how complex things can be here.
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  #23  
Old 23.09.2009, 00:07
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Re: Is this normal?

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Perhaps its a cultural thing. They definitely have a different attitude towards bereavement here.

In the US, when I needed to fly to a funeral, the airline made all kinds of accommodations to get me on the flight I needed. They freed up standby seats, and I am certain they would have bumped a passenger if they needed to.

A friend's parent died a few months ago. She needed to fly back as soon as possible. The airline (ahem, the national one for Switzerland) refused to get her on the flight she needed. It doesn't seem like they have a bereavement policy.
Death is a big thing in the States.
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