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Old 15.12.2011, 12:33
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Termination of tenancy: Legal situation of tenant / subtenant?

Dear All, I have been a lurker for a while on this forum but now finally need to ask a real question.

My father is the tenant listed on the bail on this apartment here in Lutry. He does not have a B permit. He is an American.

I am currently living in the apartment and have a B permit with my official address as here. I'm an Italian national.

My father is divorcing my mom and has decided to close down this place. I already found a great new house to live in in another city in Vaud and will sign the lease soon for myself.

I want to help the situation here and help terminate the lease of this house to shield my father from any financial fallout. My father will never return to Switzerland as even a tourist.

A friend here told me that if you do not have a B permit that you can by law break the contract without question? Is that true? I think that's a bit weird. Since my father has no B - Permit, I thought this would be the best option to end the lease agreement.

Otherwise, then I suppose I must find someone to take over the lease to do the move out. My question is, when shall I give the regie notice that my father wishes to terminate? The lease has now rolled over to year by year as it was signed in 2008. Therefore I think the 3 month rule applies.

Any help you can give me would be greatly appreciated.

gianni

Ahh - one more thing that I would like to add as an idea. The landlord has done the following, which I believe to be abusive.

1. Dishwasher has been broken for six weeks. He has not repaired it after multiple times I asked for it and sent a registered letter demanding it be fixed.
2. The landlord has billed me for exterminating the flat!
3. The landlord has billed me to fix the washing machine and drier because she said that is has been fixed too many times...its now 10 years old or more. Of course it will break a lot.

On this basis, can I break the lease because the contract would be deemed no longer workable.

The rent here is nearly 6000 a month.

Last edited by vwild1; 15.12.2011 at 23:36. Reason: merged 2 posts into 1
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Old 15.12.2011, 14:31
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Re: Moving out : Interesting Case

You complaints are totally irrelevant to your terminating the lease early. Because you are responsible to pay the extermination & repairs up to a certain amount per year. It should be listed in the contract.

Now, you need to get out your contract and read what it says. That is how you will know what to do regarding termination. Also be aware that YOU can not terminate the contract. Only your father can.

Good luck.
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Old 15.12.2011, 20:57
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Re: Moving out : Interesting Case

If you can afford a rent of "nearly Chf 6K" per month, surely you should be able to afford a lawyer ?
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Old 15.12.2011, 21:03
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Re: Moving out : Interesting Case

You really need to read your contract carefully. As said above, only your father can terminate the contract, and HE is responsible for paying the rent until end of contract, or until he finds 3 suitable and solvent parties to replace him. When my father died, despite he being a friend of the owner of the house they rented, I had to get a legal document from the sollicitor dealing with dad's affairs, to be able to terminate the lease. Even then, as poor dad died just after the renewal deadline with would have had to pay till the end of the contract had we not found somebody to take over more or less straightaway, and even then, only due to owner's goodwill.

If they can't get to your dad- they might well turn to YOU as you are registered at that address, and land you in big trouble. If you end up being responsible for the rents and don't pay- you will be listed with the 'Office des Poursuites' and unable to find accommodation or get involved in any transaction. Could even loose your job and your B permit.

Last edited by Odile; 15.12.2011 at 21:37.
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Old 15.12.2011, 21:14
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Re: Moving out : Interesting Case

If your only aim is to leave the property you could do this

Write to your landlord a letter something along these lines:

Dear

I have just found out that I do not have a legal right to stay in Switzerland so i am going to leave, I wish you had told me that i needed a residence permit to take up a tenancy on your property before I moved in.

If you had maintained the property and it's contents to warrant my loyalty then I would have given you further notice, seeing as you haven't and I am residing in Switzerland illegally then I have already left.

Please find the keys enclosed

Fathers name

No forwarding address supplied

PS

If you want your deposit back don't pay rent until it is used up

Last edited by vwild1; 15.12.2011 at 23:37. Reason: merged 2 posts into 1
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Old 15.12.2011, 21:27
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Re: Moving out : Interesting Case

All this sort of nonsense makes it really easy for expats to find accommodation hereNOT...
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Old 15.12.2011, 21:39
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Re: Moving out : Interesting Case

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If your only aim is to leave the property you could do this

Write to your landlord a letter something along these lines:

Dear

I have just found out that I do not have a legal right to stay in Switzerland so i am going to leave, I wish you had told me that i needed a residence permit to take up a tenancy on your property before I moved in.

If you had maintained the property and it's contents to warrant my loyalty then I would have given you further notice, seeing as you haven't and I am residing in Switzerland illegally then I have already left.

Please find the keys enclosed

Fathers name

No forwarding address supplied
Tempting perhaps - until they find the son who is registered at that address and make him responsible for the lease. Bonne chance That sort of thing really does not help other ex-pats trying to find appartments- no wonder some regie/owners try to avoid some at all cost.
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Old 15.12.2011, 22:19
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Re: Moving out : Interesting Case

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Tempting perhaps - until they find the son who is registered at that address and make him responsible for the lease. Bonne chance That sort of thing really does not help other ex-pats trying to find appartments- no wonder some regie/owners try to avoid some at all cost.
This landlord has obviously not done his homework or the necessary checks to obtain a legal tenancy, he may have even broken the law (I'm not too sure on that) either way the son, resident or not, is not liable for his father's tenancy (which in itself is a matter of contention).

Tenancy law is very strict in Switzerland, it works both ways, don't be afraid to use the law in your favour, it is there for you just as much as it is for your landlord...

If he never lets to a foreigner again it's not your problem, don't let others make you feel guilty, you have a good case and good reason to terminate without consequences, that landlord has already taken advantage of you by not undertaking his responsibilities and not making the repairs you requested. You could even argue that that is your ground to terminate.

Believe you me, once you question the legality of the tenancy he will run for cover, having over 20 years in the business and having experiencing nearly every possible scenario with my own and managed properties in the UK, Europe and here in Switzerland I am talking from experience, if you want further advice talk to your advocat he will clarify what I say.

You are not responsible for the mindset of Swiss landlords, if every expat that has rented here in Switzerland shared their experiences about bad liberty taking Swiss landlords no expat would rent from a Swiss, your situation is better than most, I advise you to take advantage of it.

Like all free advice it's worth spending a few CHF to legally confirm it. Good luck whatever you decide to do.
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Old 15.12.2011, 22:21
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Re: Moving out : Interesting Case

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You really need to read your contract carefully. As said above, only your father can terminate the contract, and HE is responsible for paying the rent until end of contract, or until he finds 3 suitable and solvent parties to replace him. When my father died, despite he being a friend of the owner of the house they rented, I had to get a legal document from the sollicitor dealing with dad's affairs, to be able to terminate the lease. Even then, as poor dad died just after the renewal deadline with would have had to pay till the end of the contract had we not found somebody to take over more or less straightaway, and even then, only due to owner's goodwill.

If they can't get to your dad- they might well turn to YOU as you are registered at that address, and land you in big trouble. If you end up being responsible for the rents and don't pay- you will be listed with the 'Office des Poursuites' and unable to find accommodation or get involved in any transaction. Could even loose your job and your B permit.
It's ONE person, that's all, check with ASLOCA. This 3 person requirement is purely myth, the law is very clear on this point for once. Providing you furnish the name of one person, suitable and finacialy able to bear the cost and who is ready to sign a contract, you are off the hook.

If a contract is presented to this person who then declines to sign, you are back on the hook.

Financialy able is usualy determiend as the rent and cost as being no more than 33% of your salary.
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Old 15.12.2011, 22:41
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Re: Moving out : Interesting Case

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It's ONE person, that's all, check with ASLOCA. This 3 person requirement is purely myth, the law is very clear on this point for once. Providing you furnish the name of one person, suitable and finacialy able to bear the cost and who is ready to sign a contract, you are off the hook.

If a contract is presented to this person who then declines to sign, you are back on the hook.

Financialy able is usualy determiend as the rent and cost as being no more than 33% of your salary.
So you are looking for someone on 220,000CHF a year as a tenant given the rent is 6000CHF - Good luck you will need it
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Old 16.12.2011, 23:17
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Re: Moving out : Interesting Case

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So you are looking for someone on 220,000CHF a year as a tenant given the rent is 6000CHF - Good luck you will need it
How about that guy on the other thread who is going to work at the UN?
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Old 17.12.2011, 00:01
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Re: Moving out : Interesting Case

If you are going to do the proper termination of the lease and give three months notice, be sure to do that next week. I found out today that most of these landlords don't do business towards the end of December and if you plan on using that April 1st move out date, so you don't have to present a tenant, you have to get that registered letter in now!
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Old 17.12.2011, 00:55
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Re: Moving out : Interesting Case

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How about that guy on the other thread who is going to work at the UN?
he's only making 200K CHF, so out of the game
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Old 17.12.2011, 16:49
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Re: Moving out : Interesting Case

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It's ONE person, that's all, check with ASLOCA. This 3 person requirement is purely myth, the law is very clear on this point for once.
It is not a myth, it is past law. Once in a while you had to offer 3 parties.
TODAY, only one that fulfills the requirement of the first tenant. i.e. he must be able to pay the rent, so a wage 4k with a rent of 6k will not be suitable.
If it was rented without pets and children (doesn't matter if aloud or not)
so the new tenant should have also no pets and children, children is a difficult one as you can't give them just away...

However, it the flat has one bedroom then its obvious that a family of 4 will not to be suitable!
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Old 17.12.2011, 17:00
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Re: Moving out : Interesting Case

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If you are going to do the proper termination of the lease and give three months notice, be sure to do that next week. I found out today that most of these landlords don't do business towards the end of December and if you plan on using that April 1st move out date, so you don't have to present a tenant, you have to get that registered letter in now!
Also keep in mind we have very often moving dates. You can terminate (3 month in advance) to end of March, June, September and December and not in between.

You father has to terminate, not you, has he is the tenant

You can be held liable in case you father commits the crime not paying his bills. But this will be a law case and is not often pursuit, certainly not for 18k.

If you don't pay the rent, the landlord HAS the right to pursue you with all the belongings inside the apartment. To contrary belive 5 days past due day. (happen with me, i simple forgot, but was already sued next day) He will not wait 60 or 90 days smiling at you!

You will make for expats the live difficult.
We say, one happy customers brings you 3 more client, one unhappy one takes away 10 future customers.

Your landlord will talk about this "bloody" foreigners all over and everywhere! Next time he will ask 5 month security

Termination
As long as the letter is registered one day before December 31st your fine.
If your landlord is working these days or not is not relevant for you.
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Old 17.12.2011, 17:01
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Re: Moving out : Interesting Case

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If it was rented without pets and children (doesn't matter if aloud or not)
so the new tenant should have also no pets and children, children is a difficult one as you can't give them just away...

However, it the flat has one bedroom then its obvious that a family of 4 will not to be suitable!
So, basically what you are saying it that the tenant must met the basic criteria for rental and be willing to take over the contract as it is.

Now on the other hand, IIRC, if the landlord wants to change the conditions then he must let you out of the lease.
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Old 17.12.2011, 17:04
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Re: Moving out : Interesting Case

yes .....(filling up minimum 10 characters)
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Old 17.12.2011, 17:06
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Re: Moving out : Interesting Case

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You will make for expats the live difficult.
We say, one happy customers brings you 3 more client, one unhappy one takes away 10 future customers.

Your landlord will talk about this "bloody" foreigners all over and everywhere! Next time he will ask 5 month security
I agree with you s/he will scream bloody foreigners but he won't find too many other people to rent his place for 6000CHF.
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Old 17.12.2011, 17:39
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Re: Moving out : Interesting Case

The Asloca site clearly states that if the 'resiliation' date falls on a Saturday, Sunday or other Jour Férié (what would be called bank holiday in the UK) the registered letter has to arrive on the Friday or on the day before the official holiday (jour férié).
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Old 17.12.2011, 23:26
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Re: Moving out : Interesting Case

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If you are going to do the proper termination of the lease and give three months notice, be sure to do that next week. I found out today that most of these landlords don't do business towards the end of December and if you plan on using that April 1st move out date, so you don't have to present a tenant, you have to get that registered letter in now!
Termination dates and notice times vary from contract to contract. What is pretty much standard is that no one can give notice to the end of December.
Some contracts do not have fixed notice dates, just lead times. So you can terminate the lease to the end of almost any month with a certain number of months notice.

Be careful as some contracts have a mimimum duration before you can give notice.
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