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Old 12.12.2010, 23:59
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Rules regarding guests

Hi

I had my parents visiting me for 3 weeks.

2 weeks after the stay I got a letter from my housing agency that they have found out that I have 2 guests staying at my flat and that they would not allow that only for 1 week more.

I met up the agency later and they said normally guests are allowed to stay only for max 1 week.

I wanted to know what are the laws for this ? Is something normally mentioned in the contract ?

For me not being able have a guest at home for more than 1 week is totally unacceptable.

Thanks for advice
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Old 13.12.2010, 00:07
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Re: Rules regarding guests

If that is a rule, is there also a rule saying how many guests you can have in a year? Or how long it has to be between visits before your parents can come back for another visit? :-(
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Old 13.12.2010, 00:16
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Re: Rules regarding guests

Never heard of such a thing. I venture to say there sure is no law for that. However, could it be that, for some obscure reason, there is something in the fine print of your rental agreement?
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Old 13.12.2010, 00:45
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Re: Rules regarding guests

I have seen this once on VOX, a show called Aus und Davon.

A German couple living in Usa had close family and friends over for 1 or 2 weeks a year, the agency there found out and was mad as they signed a contract not to sublet.
They said it was family but that was not enough, anyone can sublet,family or not.
This dispute however was solved in 2 seconds by paying 40 $ more per month in rent , for that money the landlord coulnd't care less if they were family or just subletting the extra room to strangers.

I do however feel your pain, i would also not agree that if i pay a certain amount of rent, i can't do what i want.

If you pay xxx per month, you should be able to do with that room what you want, as long as you don't advertise it and sublet of course.

It is realy none of their bussines how long your friends and family stay..how did they found out? and why do they bother?

Is the rent paid on time every month? yes? well then F off (but then in Swiss German , you get what i mean )

If all comes to a discussion, do like the Germans on the tv program did, pay extra..i wouldn't agree with that now but if that is what need to be done to shut them up.. weird, very weird..
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Old 13.12.2010, 00:58
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Re: Rules regarding guests

I could understand there being an issue if you had moved out for a period and sublet to someone.

I cannot see why there should be a problem with guests staying with you unless the property was overcrowded.
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Old 13.12.2010, 01:03
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Re: Rules regarding guests

I assume the issue is the amount of people using non-metered resources which are usually proportioned on each apartment based on the number of rooms. For example, where I live the electricity is metered as is the heating (radiator thermostats) but water - both hot and cold - isn't.

Also, access to communal stuff such as lifts, bike storage rooms, washing machines etc, will be charged based on the number of rooms (or number of people who should be living in each flat).
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Old 13.12.2010, 01:07
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Re: Rules regarding guests

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I assume the issue is the amount of people using non-metered resources which are usually proportioned on each apartment based on the number of rooms. For example, where I live the electricity is metered as is the heating (radiator thermostats) but water - both hot and cold - isn't.

Also, access to communal stuff such as lifts, bike storage rooms, washing machines etc, will be charged based on the number of rooms (or number of people who should be living in each flat).
Hi Adrian,

Why would the agency care if they used more water and electrics? the Op is getting billed for it anyway, why would they bother?

Unless the place turns into party town with loud music, loads of noise, dirt lying around, a guest passed out on the landing or hallway..

But none of these seem to tick the boxes of the OP..
So i can't see why,unless another resident rang the office, they would care.

If all bills are paid on time, it should't be one of their worries to me...
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Old 13.12.2010, 01:14
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Re: Rules regarding guests

So another resident / tenant alerted the owner.

More people around, fewer parking spaces, all kinds of reason to bitch.

Petty, petty, petty!
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Old 13.12.2010, 01:14
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Re: Rules regarding guests

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I assume the issue is the amount of people using non-metered resources which are usually proportioned on each apartment based on the number of rooms. For example, where I live the electricity is metered as is the heating (radiator thermostats) but water - both hot and cold - isn't.

Also, access to communal stuff such as lifts, bike storage rooms, washing machines etc, will be charged based on the number of rooms (or number of people who should be living in each flat).
That was something along the lines of what I was thinking. If the property was a two bedroom flat and normally occupied by just one couple, then having another couple as guests should not be an issue.

If it was only a one bedroom flat and the guests were sleeping on a sofa etc. I can see that this may be an issue as more resources than planned for could be used.
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Old 13.12.2010, 07:08
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Re: Rules regarding guests

My girlfriend lives with me, (for over a year now) she is not on the rent agreement and is registered in Germany (for work reasons) and I have never had any problems with the owner/agency, I think it is a case of the owner/agency being a tad over the top...

Does it really make any difference who you have in your home?
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Old 13.12.2010, 07:18
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Re: Rules regarding guests

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That was something along the lines of what I was thinking. If the property was a two bedroom flat and normally occupied by just one couple, then having another couple as guests should not be an issue.

If it was only a one bedroom flat and the guests were sleeping on a sofa etc. I can see that this may be an issue as more resources than planned for could be used.
Well, in that example they could also reasonably expect that it'd be two people living there and have the Nebenkosten adjusted for such, rather than four.

And it could be a noise issue - they may discourage extra people through the use of increased fees to keep the noise down. Even if the parents are elderly, 3 people make more noise than two.

Still, I'd check your contract. If there's nothing in the contract, then you're probably ok to push back - but we all know that the Swiss have some pretty surprising laws, and there might just be something that says "1 week is a guest, 2 weeks is a resident" or such.
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Old 13.12.2010, 09:40
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Re: Rules regarding guests

As previously mentioned, there could be some small print buried away in the contract/rental agreement -- for any of the above reasons given.

However, what I do find troubling are the following 2 points:

Firstly, that no intelligent thinking has taken place on the part of the agency, and some leeway given as it was obviously just a family visit. In danger of generalising/stereotyping, this can be seen as the "tak-tak-tak" attitude sometimes apparent in Germanic peoples - apologies, in advance, to the many Germanic people (Swiss or German), who are obviously not like this.

And, secondly, that the agency was aware of this in the first place -- big brother, or someone's nose put out of joint?

Finally, when we first moved here 10 yrs. ago, my wife, myself and our first daughter, stayed at my wife's mothers' 2-bed. apartment (7 storey, 25+ apts., 4 dedicated parking places) for a year, whilst I renovated our house. As far as I'm aware (unless I was being treated as a mushroom), there were no complaints or no additional costs -- except CHF 100 mth. garage rental, of our choosing.
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Old 13.12.2010, 11:56
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Re: Rules regarding guests

I've never heard of such a bizzare rule and I am putting it down to pettiness.

There is an official rule in my gemeinde where 2.5 zimmer apartments are only allowed one registered occupant but my neighbour downstairs lives with his gf full time (her name just isnt on the mailbox and door). No one has said a thing because it doesnt bother anyone.

Relatives visiting arent exactly the same. I mean, they will go off after a while - unless you and the family were making a racket, and sparked complaints. Personally, I would just give the agency a call - act surprised and ask innocently whereabouts in the contract / gemeinde rules that specifically states that - under the guise of "so that everyone's on the same page and you will avoid that in future." If they cant produce anything, you can politely tell them to eff-off, and that whatever happens under your roof is really none of anyone's business if you've been quiet and considerate.
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Old 13.12.2010, 14:26
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Re: Rules regarding guests

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There is an official rule in my gemeinde where 2.5 zimmer apartments are only allowed one registered occupant
So a married couple must always have a spare bedroom? How bizarre.
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Old 13.12.2010, 14:52
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Re: Rules regarding guests

I'm pretty sure our rental contracts have had clauses in regarding long term guests, we have to notify the owner.

At the risk of getting groaned at, I notice the op is indian, and they do have a repuatation for moving in family members on the sly, not so easy here of course but the swiss love stereotypes.
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Old 13.12.2010, 17:41
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Re: Rules regarding guests

Agree it seems very petty - but sadly many people do rent small apartments, then pile in a larger number of people than it is configured for, which can cause much wear and tear. When I was a kid, there was a factory which was opened 24/7 and worked on a shift system. We had italian immigrants who rented apartments 3 per bed, and had a roll in, roll out programme. And the terrible landlord was making good money out of them.
The fact your parents stayed more than 2 weeks, which is unusual for visitors, caused the problem. Stupid neighbour though! I could understand if you had young friends staying over making an awful lot of noise. Learn from it, and next time just tell your landlord.

I have a friend who rents a 'gite' in France, and often has problems with people renting a 2 bedroom flat, sleeps 4, then has other friends of relatives coming to stay, who bring all sorts of folding or blow-up mattresses, sleep in lounge, etc. We are renting a flat to go skiing in France in FEb, and we have been asked to sign that we would not exceed the number of people stipulated, and have to send a room plant with the names of all the people staying.
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Old 13.12.2010, 17:57
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Re: Rules regarding guests

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So another resident / tenant alerted the owner.

More people around, fewer parking spaces, all kinds of reason to bitch.
Probably that is how they got to know.

Last edited by Longbyt; 13.12.2010 at 22:32. Reason: brackets to make the quote correct.
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Old 13.12.2010, 18:10
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Re: Rules regarding guests

I really don't have the mental RAM to deal with this sort of thing. In my position, I'd smile sweetly, carry on doing what I was doing and wait for the legal letter.
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Old 13.12.2010, 18:15
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Re: Rules regarding guests

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Hi

I had my parents visiting me for 3 weeks.

2 weeks after the stay I got a letter from my housing agency that they have found out that I have 2 guests staying at my flat and that they would not allow that only for 1 week more.

I met up the agency later and they said normally guests are allowed to stay only for max 1 week.

I wanted to know what are the laws for this ? Is something normally mentioned in the contract ?

For me not being able have a guest at home for more than 1 week is totally unacceptable.

Thanks for advice
I don't think there will be much followup by the agency but just that they actually wrote a letter about this is just simply amazing. With all the work on hand, this kind of stuff has to be dealt with. Well done CH with your great agency specific rules.

Last edited by danny; 13.12.2010 at 18:31.
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Old 13.12.2010, 18:28
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Re: Rules regarding guests

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If that is a rule, is there also a rule saying how many guests you can have in a year? Or how long it has to be between visits before your parents can come back for another visit? :-(
I think there is a law concerning mother-in-laws. It's a law you are allowed to make up.
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