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Old 09.10.2016, 22:41
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Landlord turning empty apartments into AirBnB rentals?

Hi,
I live in a very central part of Zurich, where apartments are very hard to find.

Recently, the building had a couple of tenants leave. Instead of re-renting these out to new tenants, the landlord (a leasing company) has turned them both into AirBnB rentals. I find this troubling for a couple of reasons:

- Security, as the building has had a couple of break-in issues in the past, and with daily/weekly changes in Airbnb guests, how do you know who is supposed to be in the building? Also, will the guests ensure that the building front door is locked at all times, etc...

- In a city like Zurich, where availability of apartments continues to reach all-time lows, is it ethical for a landlord to take 2 centrally-located apartments off the market completely? The landlord could have charged prevailing market rates and would have easily found so many willing renters.

All this happened over the last month or so, and I've tried to make peace/sense to find a middle ground, but it really bothers me to have a full-time "hotel room" next to my apartment, especially given the dearth of available housing in central Zurich.

Any opposing thoughts other than "well, they own it, they can do what they want"? Am I wrong in feeling annoyed?
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Old 09.10.2016, 23:25
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Re: Landlord turning empty apartments into AirBnB rentals?

If he owns the building he can do pretty much whatever he wants. My OH does the same with his second apartment.

Your landlord is probably simply making more money by renting it off of AirBnB at a high daily rate. Plenty of people do it these days. It may be slightly ethically questionable in certain locations, but it's hardly illegal.

I don't really see a possible connection with break-ins either. People can walk in and out of most apartment buildings, be it as guests or simply because the main door is unlocked. Mine is almost always open, for instance. And it's the landlord's duty to tell his guests how to follow certain rules etc. I've rented via AirBnB many times and it's part of the deal. And in most cases, that works out perfectly fine.

So personally, I wouldn't give a damn if my landlord rented out apartments via AirBnB.
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Old 09.10.2016, 23:30
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Re: Landlord turning empty apartments into AirBnB rentals?

I'm pretty sure there are various zones where various activities are regulated. So if certain plot of land is zoned as appartements, it might be not possible to make a hotel out of it.
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Old 09.10.2016, 23:36
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Re: Landlord turning empty apartments into AirBnB rentals?

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I'm pretty sure there are various zones where various activities are regulated. So if certain plot of land is zoned as appartements, it might be not possible to make a hotel out of it.
It's not a hotel. It's renting out private apartments. And if someone owns the apartment(s), he can rent them out however he pleases, generally anyway. That was part of the reason for the massive outrage on hotels' end when AirBnB started to really take off a few years back.
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Old 10.10.2016, 00:30
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Re: Landlord turning empty apartments into AirBnB rentals?

Although it doesn't seem to be 'illegal', a ground-swell against apartments being rented out via airbnb for more than occasional lets by their owners seems to have started in other countries, especially as a place being permanently avaliable seems to be against the original concept.

If you're genuinely worried about possible security problems, noise, mess, etc, that might be caused by your regie/letting agent going down this route it might be worth asking ASLOCA (mieter-something in german?) about it, it's quite possible they're at least collecting cases of this happening to monitor the situation.

Google brings up several articles, including these;

https://www.thelocal.fr/20160113/par...l-airbnb-flats https://www.thelocal.se/20150827/wom...rst-airbnb-ban
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Old 10.10.2016, 00:59
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Re: Landlord turning empty apartments into AirBnB rentals?

There are debates about this in some major cities. I think in Switzerland it hasn't happened yet, for now it's just been hotel industry saying it's unfair. I guess that with cities being this small and not too touristic it's hardly a problem.
I read that in NYC they banned renting for less than 30 days to people that is not there physically to try and tackle the issue.

As for security, in Switzerland it's mandatory to notify all paying guests to the police within 24 hours of arrival. The front door is never safe anyway, just close the one of your apartment, anyone can ring random bells and someone will almost always open anyway.
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Old 10.10.2016, 01:28
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Re: Landlord turning empty apartments into AirBnB rentals?

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There are debates about this in some major cities. I think in Switzerland it hasn't happened yet,
It has, there's loose talks about regulating it in some way.

Given this is Switzerland, I give it another 5-10 years until any form of regulation is even proposed

The only people who are not allowed to rent out their place as they please are those who rent themselves - though if the landlord agrees it's just as allowed - and voilą, as said, whoever owns can more or less do what they want.
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Old 10.10.2016, 11:51
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Re: Landlord turning empty apartments into AirBnB rentals?

Earlier this year Berlin moved against Air BnB rentals without getting a permit first, if it gets an issue regarding volume and availability here same could happen in Zurich to control the situation?

http://money.cnn.com/2016/05/02/news...ent/index.html
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Old 10.10.2016, 12:16
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Re: Landlord turning empty apartments into AirBnB rentals?

Thank the law where a new Tennant can get a rent reduction if his rent is much higher than the previous Tennant. Protecting people always comes at a cost.....
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Old 10.10.2016, 12:25
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Re: Landlord turning empty apartments into AirBnB rentals?

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I don't really see a possible connection with break-ins either. People can walk in and out of most apartment buildings, be it as guests or simply because the main door is unlocked. Mine is almost always open, for instance. And it's the landlord's duty to tell his guests how to follow certain rules etc. I've rented via AirBnB many times and it's part of the deal. And in most cases, that works out perfectly fine.
Most of the city centre apartment blocks I visit, including our own, have a locked main front door. I don't recall going to any such buildings where you just walk in and go directly to the door of the person you are visiting.

I would definitely protest if we had visitors walking into our place willy-nilly.

There are often permanent notices on the inside of these doors reminding residents to lock them. Ours locks automatically behind you as it closes.
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Old 10.10.2016, 12:46
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Re: Landlord turning empty apartments into AirBnB rentals?

I would not be happy either- for security and possible noise, etc, reasons.
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Old 10.10.2016, 13:00
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Re: Landlord turning empty apartments into AirBnB rentals?

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I would not be happy either- for security and possible noise, etc, reasons.
Unless you turn you own house into an Air B&B, you won't be effected in any way . It's not as through residents have a choice on other tenants in a block. In the UK plenty of people take DSS tenants as they pay a higher rent.
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Old 10.10.2016, 16:09
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Re: Landlord turning empty apartments into AirBnB rentals?

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If you're genuinely worried about possible security problems, noise, mess, etc, that might be caused by your regie/letting agent going down this route it might be worth asking ASLOCA (mieter-something in german?) about it, it's quite possible they're at least collecting cases of this happening to monitor the situation.
ASLOCA is the tenants' organisation in the French-speaking (and Italian-speaking ?) cantons.
The partner organisation in the German-speaking cantons is called the "Mieterverband". https://www.mieterverband.ch/mv-zh.html

Yes, well worth contacting them about this matter, and for all sorts of legal protection with regard to tenancy, membership is highly recommended for anyone renting.
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Old 10.10.2016, 16:09
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Re: Landlord turning empty apartments into AirBnB rentals?

Why would an AirBnB guest make any more or less noise than any tenant and/or their friends/guests or why would an AirBnB gues be any more dangerous than any friend/guest of a more permanent tenant?

Strange thoughts on here
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Old 10.10.2016, 16:11
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Re: Landlord turning empty apartments into AirBnB rentals?

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Why would an AirBnB guest make any more or less noise than any tenant and/or their friends/guests or why would an AirBnB gues be any more dangerous than any friend/guest of a more permanent tenant?

Strange thoughts on here
Probably because people think that someone who is a tourist and visiting for a couple of days only parties more than someone who needs to work? And on more days?
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Old 10.10.2016, 16:11
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Re: Landlord turning empty apartments into AirBnB rentals?

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Why would an AirBnB guest make any more or less noise than any tenant and/or their friends/guests or why would an AirBnB gues be any more dangerous than any friend/guest of a more permanent tenant?

Strange thoughts on here
because you can rent airbnbs for weekend long destructive orgy parties
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Old 10.10.2016, 16:19
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Re: Landlord turning empty apartments into AirBnB rentals?

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Probably because people think that someone who is a tourist and visiting for a couple of days only parties more than someone who needs to work? And on more days?
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because you can rent airbnbs for weekend long destructive orgy parties
Ah that's why. Well ok then I love a good prejudice
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Old 10.10.2016, 16:27
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Re: Landlord turning empty apartments into AirBnB rentals?

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Why would an AirBnB guest make any more or less noise than any tenant and/or their friends/guests or why would an AirBnB gues be any more dangerous than any friend/guest of a more permanent tenant?

Strange thoughts on here
Of course, there are nice and horrible AirBnB guests, just the same as there are nice and horrible permanent tenants.

In general, though, people are more likely to feel answerable, accountable, to people with whom they have a long-term relationship. A long-term tenant who misbehaves can be fairly sure of encountering some sore of reprimand by the other tenants nearby and perhaps by the landlord. This (amongst other factors such as an ethical stance and a basic sense of fairness) helps neighbours towards curtailing noisy or offensive activities.

On the other hand, someone who is just passing though, such as an AirBnB guest, need have no such fear, except perhaps a bad reference on the Air BnB site. This means that the very status of being there "only" on AirBnB helps the horrible ones feel all the more at liberty to behave badly.
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Old 10.10.2016, 16:37
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Re: Landlord turning empty apartments into AirBnB rentals?

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because you can rent airbnbs for weekend long destructive orgy parties

Were you their too last weekend ?
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Old 10.10.2016, 16:44
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Re: Landlord turning empty apartments into AirBnB rentals?

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Why would an AirBnB guest make any more or less noise than any tenant and/or their friends/guests or why would an AirBnB gues be any more dangerous than any friend/guest of a more permanent tenant?

Strange thoughts on here
I'm sorry but you sound incredibly naive.
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