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Old 17.01.2012, 17:55
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Renting contract

Is it really required for someone to translate the contract before you sign? We have lived in 8 countries until now and most of them (there are exceptions) where we rented houses/apartments the contract was standard and there was no room to change a clause even if you did not agree to. so basically there was no point in getting it translated before signing even if you didnt know the local language.

Also how important is it for someone local (for example the relocation agent) to accompany you when you do the move in inspection? In other places we have lived where there was a move-in inspection we have managed on our own and the move out wasn't any hassle at all. How is it here?
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Old 17.01.2012, 18:29
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Re: Renting contract

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Also how important is it for someone local (for example the relocation agent) to accompany you when you do the move in inspection? In other places we have lived where there was a move-in inspection we have managed on our own and the move out wasn't any hassle at all. How is it here?
This is Switzerland!
Take a look here

You do the check/protokol yourself and have to submit it back within some time limit.
They will not give you a list of defects from the last tenant, you are assuming/taking the apartment in perfect condition unless you get everything on your new protokol.

When you get the blank protokol form, photocopy a few copies first as they rarely have enough space to list everything.

You need to note every single thing, in detail, on the protokol. You can not be too anal about this.

This means absolutely everything, all marks, dents, scratches, ill fitting anything, any paint defects, blinds inside and out, mould outside, whether machines have been serviced (if they haven't, ask for them to be as you will probably need to pay for a service when you leave), keys in all doors, go over the floor in detail noting every scratch/mark, any cracked/chipped ceramics, if you spot any crappy previous hole repairs in the wall, note them down. Check the hinges on everything. Check all the sockets work.

Kitchens/bathrooms are a particular item of note. Make sure the hob is described as used and or marked (unless it's new). Same with fridge door and dishwasher door. Check for any marks or chips in the bath and basins. Any scratches to the chrome work. Check inside the oven for scratches.
Any knife marks on the work surfaces, any chips to the edges, anything discoloured.

Make sure you write a nice general comment at the end such as 'all floors in used and worn condition with marks in every room'.

Basically try to cover your arse for all the wear and tear you will inflict in the coming months/years.

The problem is, you do not know if your landlord/letting agencies are a***holes or not, so you need to presume they are. Take a few minutes to read some of the tricks they get up to.

Then you will need insurance also and for CHF80 a year you can join the kantonal renters association.
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Old 17.01.2012, 18:34
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Re: Renting contract

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This is Switzerland!
...stuff...
Thanks, that's great advice for me. I move into my first Swiss apartment in a couple of weeks and will take it all on board.

I'm sure I'll miss something though!
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Old 17.01.2012, 19:51
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Re: Renting contract

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They will not give you a list of defects from the last tenant, you are assuming/taking the apartment in perfect condition unless you get everything on your new protokol.
OK, but not always true. Some agencies will do the exit inspection at the same time as the incoming inspection...in which case there are no secrets.
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Old 17.01.2012, 20:04
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Re: Renting contract

We are moving to an empty apartment (tenants have already vacated) and it has been recently renovated (after the previous tenants have moved out). Any advice on what to check or any advice on taking the relocation agent along with us (we need to pay the relo agent for the time spent obviously!)
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Old 17.01.2012, 21:18
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Re: Renting contract

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We are moving to an empty apartment (tenants have already vacated) and it has been recently renovated (after the previous tenants have moved out). Any advice on what to check or any advice on taking the relocation agent along with us (we need to pay the relo agent for the time spent obviously!)
No need to take the relocation agent. They will not side with you nor the owner, so they are of no use.
If it has been renovated then in theory your list will be shorter. However you can still take the above advice.
I've just moved into an old but just renovated apartment and managed to get a good list up, from loose screws on the wooden blinds, to marks you can only see in the right light, to previous wall repairs that can be seen despite decorating.
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Old 17.01.2012, 21:37
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Re: Renting contract

You also may not be required to give the 'defekt' paperwork immediately back to the landlord. If you are allowed, keep it for a week or two before returning it - you will certainly notice more things over the first couple of weeks when you move in.

I also recommend sleeping in the new apartment for 1 or 2 nights before you move all your stuff in - just in case you discover something that is totally unacceptable...
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Old 17.01.2012, 22:25
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Re: Renting contract

thanks 17clarence and swisspea! we are new so basically need to buy new furniture and i guess it will take us a minimum of 2-3 days before we actually move the things in. i dont know if am getting panicky about the move-out already
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Old 20.01.2012, 20:56
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Re: Renting contract

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No need to take the relocation agent. They will not side with you nor the owner, so they are of no use.
That is absolute rubbish. If my clients are the tenants, I represent their best interests. The owner has the option of using the services of the HEV if they wish.
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Old 20.01.2012, 21:03
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Re: Renting contract

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(we need to pay the relo agent for the time spent obviously!)
I have been trying to figure out why you are asking all these questions here when you have a relocation agent?
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Old 20.01.2012, 21:06
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Re: Renting contract

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I have been trying to figure out why you are asking all these questions here when you have a relocation agent?
Well, ask me that again! Didnt have too good an experience with the relo services. we didnt get what we were looking for but got a fat bill nonetheless - so decided to discontinue the services and do the rest (god knows what the 'rest' is) on our own!!
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Old 20.01.2012, 21:10
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Re: Renting contract

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We are moving to an empty apartment (tenants have already vacated) and it has been recently renovated (after the previous tenants have moved out). Any advice on what to check or any advice on taking the relocation agent along with us (we need to pay the relo agent for the time spent obviously!)
Just because it's renovated that doesn't mean it's in perfect, new condition. Some landlords call a flat renovated because it was painted.

The advice you've been given is excellent, inspect everything as closely as possible and document everything you see. Don't let yourself feel guilty or let anyone try to tell you you're being unreasonable, this is a business agreement not the start of a friendship.

If you get the wrong kind of landlord they can make your life absolutely miserable when you eventually move out and expect you to pay up for any visible defects that were not documented. An argument of "you knew it was there" is no defense and not even worth the effort it takes to speak it if you find yourself facing such a situation.
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Old 20.01.2012, 21:14
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Re: Renting contract

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Well, ask me that again! Didnt have too good an experience with the relo services. we didnt get what we were looking for but got a fat bill nonetheless - so decided to discontinue the services and do the rest (god knows what the 'rest' is) on our own!!
That is really unfortunate. It is really important that you give this feedback to the employer if they are the ones who retained this person for you. I would certainly query the bill. Does it reflect the services you were quoted?

Finding an apartment is something many do on their own, in fact, I have been contacted after someone has found a place and they are completely overwhelmed with the rest of the process. You really should not be on your own and if your relocation agent really cared he/she would see the process through for you.
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Old 20.01.2012, 22:56
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Re: Renting contract

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Finding an apartment is something many do on their own, in fact, I have been contacted after someone has found a place and they are completely overwhelmed with the rest of the process. You really should not be on your own and if your relocation agent really cared he/she would see the process through for you.
Why don't you ask JustSwiss to employ you as that's what you're getting at?
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Old 20.01.2012, 23:05
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Re: Renting contract

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Why don't you ask JustSwiss to employ you as that's what you're getting at?
Just because I am a relocation agent doesn't mean I can't have an opinion, which is exactly what I have expressed here.

Besides, I have no capacity at the moment to take on any new work.
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Old 20.01.2012, 23:24
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Re: Renting contract

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You also may not be required to give the 'defekt' paperwork immediately back to the landlord. If you are allowed, keep it for a week or two before returning it - you will certainly notice more things over the first couple of weeks when you move in.
I was told by my relocation agent that I will have a period of time (I can't remember if it was a fortnight or a month) after I move in during which I can make additions to the "state of the apartment/defects" list.

Actually, I'm not 100% sure I'm recalling this correctly, so don't quote me on it.
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Old 20.01.2012, 23:37
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Re: Renting contract

My relocation agent was invaluable to me when I recently came back to Switzerland. Provided by my company 99% sure it wasn't Mrs Doolittle in case you are wondering! In any case I have moved around in Switzerland before without one, so it is ok to do it all on your own, but the advice is certainly helpful and should be superior to going solo.

Mine advised me to take note of all the little scratches and dents. Even on the inside of the new dishwasher .

My advice in short:

Take a digital camera and a picture of every corner, wall, floor. Point out any scratches, even small ones on the sink. You might think this is pedantic (and it is), but it might save you when you exit 3 years down the line and didn't notice the original defect that the owner is trying to bill you for. I once paid a months rent (CHF 2500) from my deposit to have my apartment cleaned and for minor damages which to be honest, I couldn't recall seeing but was sent the bill sent later. I couldn't really contest as I had no proof otherwise.

Test that the heating works - ours didn't and it is a pain in the ... to sort it out later.

Same with appliances (our dishwasher gumpfed up our sink and we had to pay for the plumber to fix it despite it being a preexisting condition). Not sure how we could have avoided it to be honest unless we took our dirty dishes round.

Make sure you roll up & down the blinds and shutters. They will have to be clean when you leave. You wont notice they are dirty if you don't roll them down in the first place. Same with any balcony shades. Don't forget the camera.

Any amendments need to be written on the contract. Any photos you attach are a handy record. You have something like a month after moving in to send over that detail.

Have fun...
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Old 27.02.2012, 22:00
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Re: Renting contract

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This is Switzerland!
Take a look here

This means absolutely everything, all marks, dents, scratches, ill fitting anything, any paint defects, blinds inside and out, mould outside, whether machines have been serviced (if they haven't, ask for them to be as you will probably need to pay for a service when you leave), keys in all doors, go over the floor in detail noting every scratch/mark, any cracked/chipped ceramics, if you spot any crappy previous hole repairs in the wall, note them down. Check the hinges on everything. Check all the sockets work.

Kitchens/bathrooms are a particular item of note. Make sure the hob is described as used and or marked (unless it's new). Same with fridge door and dishwasher door. Check for any marks or chips in the bath and basins. Any scratches to the chrome work. Check inside the oven for scratches.
Any knife marks on the work surfaces, any chips to the edges, anything discoloured.

Make sure you write a nice general comment at the end such as 'all floors in used and worn condition with marks in every room'.

Basically try to cover your arse for all the wear and tear you will inflict in the coming months/years.

The problem is, you do not know if your landlord/letting agencies are a***holes or not, so you need to presume they are. Take a few minutes to read some of the tricks they get up to.

Then you will need insurance also and for CHF80 a year you can join the kantonal renters association.

Yes you are really right! but the association the price is more:+ 80.-fixed price for transport + 80.-/hour for assistance of this day and the ceremony with the owner can last hours and hours!!
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Old 28.02.2012, 00:09
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Re: Renting contract

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This is Switzerland!
Take a look here

You do the check/protokol yourself and have to submit it back within some time limit.
They will not give you a list of defects from the last tenant, you are assuming/taking the apartment in perfect condition unless you get everything on your new protokol.

Any knife marks on the work surfaces, any chips to the edges, anything discoloured.

Make sure you write a nice general comment at the end such as 'all floors in used and worn condition with marks in every room'.

Basically try to cover your arse for all the wear and tear you will inflict in the coming months/years.

The problem is, you do not know if your landlord/letting agencies are a***holes or not, so you need to presume they are. Take a few minutes to read some of the tricks they get up to.

Then you will need insurance also and for CHF80 a year you can join the kantonal renters association.
Is it possible to get someone over from the renter's association to do this protocol ?
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Old 28.02.2012, 00:24
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Re: Renting contract

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Is it possible to get someone over from the renter's association to do this protocol ?
That's what Matone was alluring to. They will turn out but at a cost, and they will only argue over unreasonable claims, and they only have your original protokol to go on.

I think the best approach is do a thorough and brutal protokol when you take a place on, and then make sure you are insured.
When you move out you really only have your insurance excess and the cleaning to worry about.
If you get the apt cleaned in advance with a handover gaurantee, then the most you are in for is the insurance excess.

But also, turning up with someone from the MV may get the handover off confrontational start, which may not be in your best interest.
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