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Old 03.02.2013, 20:00
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Moved in to a dusty, dirty apartment

I feel like I may have recently read a thread on this, so apologies if already discussed. Please point me in the right direction, jrspet, if so

So today was the day of our big move. We spent the better part of the day tirelessly cleaning the place we were moving out of, only to find a far less adequate state of the apartment to move into.

At first glance, the place seemed clean enough. A basic vacuum job, main surfaces wiped - that's about it. I'd estimate 80% of surfaces (inside closets and shelves, TV, printer, etc.) are dusty or dirty, pots/pans/dishes need to be rinsed, and the floors were not mopped. So looks like we're back to cleaning...

My question is what do we do to address this? When we eventually hand the apartment back over, we will also need to clean it in order to get our substantially high deposit back, and so needless to say the end result will be 100x better than how we found it. We feel a bit taken advantage of, and we're wondering what we should do.

We had a good relationship with the tenant, so we don't want to create any tension from Day 1. At this point, we've snapped a number of photos to document everything and plan on telling him we're disappointed with the cleaning job via SMS or email.

Any ideas???
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Old 03.02.2013, 20:13
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Re: Moved in to a dusty, dirty apartment

Are you renting the place through an agency ? Normally when you enter the place somebody from the agency or the owner come with you to constate the state of the place. You write any problem you see like mark on the floor for example and then you both sign a paper. When you leave you look at the paper in case of problem.

In this case I would have refused to sign the paper. If you did then you can do much. You can complain but the agency will tell you that you checked it so it's too late. I don't know what happen if you didn't sign any entry paper as I always did.



I
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Old 03.02.2013, 20:14
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Re: Moved in to a dusty, dirty apartment

Taking photos are an absolute essential and you can make videos too. It is important to have everything to prove the state of your place. I also made an before and after picture. For example, I took a picture of the oven which was absolutely disgusting (I missed the Swiss standard) before and one after I made a clean path to show the difference.

Results were fast and apologetics. You can't argue with that.
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Old 03.02.2013, 20:21
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Re: Moved in to a dusty, dirty apartment

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Are you renting the place through an agency ? Normally when you enter the place somebody from the agency or the owner come with you to constate the state of the place. You write any problem you see like mark on the floor for example and then you both sign a paper. When you leave you look at the paper in case of problem.

In this case I would have refused to sign the paper. If you did then you can do much. You can complain but the agency will tell you that you checked it so it's too late. I don't know what happen if you didn't sign any entry paper as I always did.
Not through an agency. We signed an 'etat de lieu' (state of apartment) a couple days before moving in, and prior to it being "cleaned" as our schedules conflicted. Clearly a mistake...

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Taking photos are an absolute essential and you can make videos too. It is important to have everything to prove the state of your place. I also made an before and after picture. For example, I took a picture of the oven which was absolutely disgusting (I missed the Swiss standard) before and one after I made a clean path to show the difference.

Results were fast and apologetics. You can't argue with that.
Videos would have also been good - we'll do that as we go, thanks.

I guess we'll just see how he responds when we express our discontent.
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Old 03.02.2013, 20:29
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Re: Moved in to a dusty, dirty apartment

My husband took photos of our dirty apartment when we moved in - thats essential.
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Old 03.02.2013, 20:37
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Re: Moved in to a dusty, dirty apartment

I think you are sort of stuck because you already signed the agreement. We learnt (from experience) that it's best to hold on to the inspection report for a few days after you move in, so you can add any additional items that come up - I'm not sure if that's standard practice in Switzerland. In our current apartment it was generally clean and we don't have the highest expectations, but we found a couple of things damaged and we needed to add those to the paperwork within a few days of moving in.

Our previous experience included a massive chip from a wall, duly noted on our moving in documentation, and the agent tried to hit us up for the repair on moving out. Lucky I have a good memory, and was pretty sure we had already noted it on the documents, because the agent was not even going to check the 'moving in' documents, and was just going to bill us for basically anything the owner spotted when he dropped by to check over the place with a microscope...

I've also decided, from experience, that it's worth moving just your mattress and pillow in for a couple of nights before actually moving all your furniture in, just in case the place is 'un-liveable'. A friend of mine recently moved in with her three children below a mentally ill lady who has several 'visitors' per night, and it's really unliveable for her...but she has to fulfil her contract obligations and save up the money to move away again...
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Old 04.02.2013, 14:28
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Re: Moved in to a dusty, dirty apartment

i might be wrong, but I think that you still have about 14 days after the inspection report to notify of damage. In which case that could go for cleanliness too? Especially as you were told it would be cleaned before you signed.
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Old 04.02.2013, 14:36
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Re: Moved in to a dusty, dirty apartment

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i might be wrong, but I think that you still have about 14 days after the inspection report to notify of damage. In which case that could go for cleanliness too? Especially as you were told it would be cleaned before you signed.
From what I gather, the Swiss want Auslander living in Der Schweiz to act more Swiss, so do the "Swiss" thing and complain to the landlord, just for added Schweizness, march down to the Germeindeverwaltung and file a complaint there too.
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Old 04.02.2013, 15:14
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Re: Moved in to a dusty, dirty apartment

NEVER, EVER, EVER, sign anything which you do not agree with to be 100%

Even then it can be difficult! I took over a dirty apartment as my stuff was in the truck outside... (The old tenant turned up to the inspection with a steam cleaner and was obviously expecting trouble!) On the handover document, signed by everyone, there were 23 items which needed cleaning.

The next day I asked the agent when were the cleaners coming? He said you agreed it was dirty, I thought you accepted that! After a lot of arguing he sent 2 cleaners to clean the bathroom and the kitchen. Later the gardener removed the bird's nest from the venetian blinds...!

You must react straight away! Otherwise the old tenant can claim it is your dirt. You must inform the owner today the place is dirty!
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Old 06.11.2019, 16:40
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Re: Moved in to a dusty, dirty apartment

Similar and unbelievable issue: I moved into a new apartment a few days ago. No light in the house, and you couldn't see perfectly. We said "the door must be fixed", and thats it.

After a couple of days we find the house is dirty, there are things broken. We contact the real estate agent who asks the previous tenant to clean it!!! Is this normal?! I was told the houses in Switzerland are handed over in pristine condition!!

This.is.crazy.
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Old 06.11.2019, 16:42
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Re: Moved in to a dusty, dirty apartment

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Similar and unbelievable issue: I moved into a new apartment a few days ago. No light in the house, and you couldn't see perfectly. We said "the door must be fixed", and thats it.

After a couple of days we find the house is dirty, there are things broken. We contact the real estate agent who asks the previous tenant to clean it!!! Is this normal?! I was told the houses in Switzerland are handed over in pristine condition!!

This.is.crazy.
Well did you inspect the house?
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Old 06.11.2019, 16:44
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Re: Moved in to a dusty, dirty apartment

Why would you accept an apartment you only saw in the dark? Didn't the landlord or agent do a walk through and get you to sign a protocol, both agreeing all was in order?
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Old 06.11.2019, 16:48
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Re: Moved in to a dusty, dirty apartment

Apparently not thoroughly: I didn't check under the washing machine (which had dust and things that fell behind it - like a lamp, a towel rail, a box of kleenex,...), or inside the dishwasher (which apparently was used to store things and not to clean dishes). Or inside the electricity box, which clearly hasn't been cleaned since the turn of the century!!
And I did miss a wall that had those sticky things glued...
And a floor skirt which is smashed...

I bear responsability for not seeing that, but arent' real estate agencies obliged to have a professional cleaning going on before a handover?
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Old 06.11.2019, 16:51
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Re: Moved in to a dusty, dirty apartment

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Apparently not thoroughly: I didn't check under the washing machine (which had dust and things that fell behind it - like a lamp, a towel rail, a box of kleenex,...), or inside the dishwasher (which apparently was used to store things and not to clean dishes). Or inside the electricity box, which clearly hasn't been cleaned since the turn of the century!!
And I did miss a wall that had those sticky things glued...
And a floor skirt which is smashed...

I bear responsability for not seeing that, but arent' real estate agencies obliged to have a professional cleaning going on before a handover?
No they dont have to have a professional. Have you signed a contract?
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Old 06.11.2019, 17:01
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Re: Moved in to a dusty, dirty apartment

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Apparently not thoroughly: I didn't check under the washing machine (which had dust and things that fell behind it - like a lamp, a towel rail, a box of kleenex,...), or inside the dishwasher (which apparently was used to store things and not to clean dishes). Or inside the electricity box, which clearly hasn't been cleaned since the turn of the century!!
And I did miss a wall that had those sticky things glued...
And a floor skirt which is smashed...

I bear responsability for not seeing that, but arent' real estate agencies obliged to have a professional cleaning going on before a handover?
Well, if you've not signed anything yet you're fine. Just get them to clean it up (how they do it or who does it doesn't matter) before you accept the flat handover.
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Old 06.11.2019, 17:07
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Re: Moved in to a dusty, dirty apartment

Yes, I signed off. But I have 10 days to say "that is not right".

Update: just got a message from real estate agent saying they will fix everything in the following weeks and that he asked previous owners to get in touch with us so they can clean whatever is not ok... not so bad I guess
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Old 06.11.2019, 17:12
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Re: Moved in to a dusty, dirty apartment

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Yes, I signed off. But I have 10 days to say "that is not right".

Update: just got a message from real estate agent saying they will fix everything in the following weeks and that he asked previous owners to get in touch with us so they can clean whatever is not ok... not so bad I guess
The ten days is for the "Mängelrüge". That's things broken/not working. But not dirt.

By the way, I would soon - before sending the "Mängelrüge" - let the dishwasher run and see if it still works after being out of use for what seems to be a long time.
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Old 06.11.2019, 17:21
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Re: Moved in to a dusty, dirty apartment

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I bear responsability for not seeing that, but arent' real estate agencies obliged to have a professional cleaning going on before a handover?
No. Cleaning does not have to be "professional", but you can request to have a clean apartment at hand over time. Expect you agreed on broom clean or less.
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Old 06.11.2019, 17:22
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Re: Moved in to a dusty, dirty apartment

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Yes, I signed off. But I have 10 days to say "that is not right".

Update: just got a message from real estate agent saying they will fix everything in the following weeks and that he asked previous owners to get in touch with us so they can clean whatever is not ok... not so bad I guess
I think the real estate agent is passing the buck. They should inspect it and take care of cleaning arrangements with the last tenant.
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Old 06.11.2019, 17:35
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Re: Moved in to a dusty, dirty apartment

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The ten days is for the "Mängelrüge". That's things broken/not working. But not dirt.

By the way, I would soon - before sending the "Mängelrüge" - let the dishwasher run and see if it still works after being out of use for what seems to be a long time.

Curley, thank you so much for your tip: that is exactly what I did! Also because I needed to wash the refrigerator shelves
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