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Old 03.11.2016, 13:54
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Subletting one room in apartment: how to make it legal

My family rent an apartment, which has more rooms than we actually need. So we will sublet one room to another person (we will still live in the apartment, sharing it with the new person who will pay part of the rent + other costs to us). I understand that it's legal to sublet your entire apartment, but how about subletting just part of it? We don't want to add the other person to our main lease, but we will sign a sublease contract with her (stating conditions, time period, rent, etc.).

Must/should we inform the regie about it?

Must we seek the regie's approval before we can sublet the room? or can we just inform them after the fact?

Thanks.
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Old 03.11.2016, 14:19
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Re: Subletting one room in apartment: how to make it legal

It would be a good idea to buy 2 copies of an approved rental contract at a stationer, (a shop selling paper, a Papeterie) then you would be on a firm legal basis.

If the room is furnished, I believe you can write just "2 weeks notice to leave" in the contract.

The Regie must be informed, they can object if you are charging the sub-tenant too much.

A visit to the Regie before you look for someone would be a polite thing to do, but it isn't mandatory.
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Old 03.11.2016, 16:04
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Re: Subletting one room in apartment: how to make it legal

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Must/should we inform the regie about it?
Yes

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Must we seek the regie's approval before we can sublet the room?
Yes

However, the regie in general cannot decline this type of arrangements unless you charge far too much rent.

Note that if you don't take them on the lease, you will be liable for everything he or she may do or destroy or whatever in your apartment. This is often an issue in e.g. flatshares (which is effectively, this is what you plan to do). I've had the problem too in that a former flatmate (loooong time ago though) destroyed the stove (no idea how), but since I was the main tenant, I had to pay.

Also: set up some form of written agreement.
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Old 03.11.2016, 16:17
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Re: Subletting one room in apartment: how to make it legal

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It would be a good idea to buy 2 copies of an approved rental contract at a stationer, (a shop selling paper, a Papeterie) then you would be on a firm legal basis.
No need to buy anything, a sample contract can be downloaded and printed out from www.mieterverband.ch

- Sample Sub-lease contract
- Sample handover protocol

Source: here


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The Regie must be informed, they can object if you are charging the sub-tenant too much.
All the general info about subletting is printed in the first page of the form above, so just copy paste the link through google translator for more info.

As for damage that could potentially be caused by the sub tenant, just make sure they have 3rd party liability insurance. Should cover you for anything major. You also should agree a deposit which would be held in the sub tenant's name and money only released if everything is ok. (hence you need to go through the handover protocol etc)
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Old 03.11.2016, 16:46
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Re: Subletting one room in apartment: how to make it legal

PS: I see that the OP is located in Lausanne, so a contract written in French is probably more appropriate.

I know that ASLOCA is the equivalent of Mieterverband in the German speaking part. They have a sample contract: here
They also have some information on their FAQs section: here
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Old 18.12.2016, 07:49
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Re: Subletting one room in apartment: how to make it legal

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No need to buy anything, a sample contract can be downloaded and printed out from www.mieterverband.ch

- Sample Sub-lease contract
- Sample handover protocol

Source: here




All the general info about subletting is printed in the first page of the form above, so just copy paste the link through google translator for more info.

As for damage that could potentially be caused by the sub tenant, just make sure they have 3rd party liability insurance. Should cover you for anything major. You also should agree a deposit which would be held in the sub tenant's name and money only released if everything is ok. (hence you need to go through the handover protocol etc)
What is the max deposit amount for a room to sublet for 6 weeks for CHF 720? Where to make the deposit and when can it be released (how soon after I leave)?

Last edited by Riana22; 18.12.2016 at 08:17. Reason: more questions to ask
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Old 18.12.2016, 09:30
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Re: Subletting one room in apartment: how to make it legal

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What is the max deposit amount for a room to sublet for 6 weeks for CHF 720?
3 times of monthly rent. If 720 is your total for 6 weeks (42 days), then theoretically landlord may ask for 720*90/42 = 1542 Fr. But for such a short term contract it would be unusual to request it.

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Where to make the deposit and when can it be released (how soon after I leave)?
On a special bank account for these purposes (Mietkautionskonto) and in your name. Could be a year if you have difficulties with the landlord.
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Old 18.12.2016, 10:22
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Re: Subletting one room in apartment: how to make it legal

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On a special bank account for these purposes (Mietkautionskonto) and in your name. Could be a year if you have difficulties with the landlord.
Even for a 6-week sublet?
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Old 18.12.2016, 10:43
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Re: Subletting one room in apartment: how to make it legal

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3 times of monthly rent. If 720 is your total for 6 weeks (42 days), then theoretically landlord may ask for 720*90/42 = 1542 Fr. But for such a short term contract it would be unusual to request it.
She did ask for almost the same amount like the above one. She initially posted the ad as renting one room, then when I wrote her she said she wanted to rent the whole house for CHF 1,400. When I replied I had only applied for 1 room, she wrote back asking if I would still be interested in the room, as I could share the house with another woman who applied for the other rooms. We had a video Skype conversation and then she told me about the deposit and I became suspicious when I heard the amount, as it barely exceeds the amount of the rent for the whole house. I have a feeling no one else will be living there besides me.
Without checking it out, I also felt that it was not necessary to request a deposit for 42 days of living there. Plus she's out of the country and said that regarding payment, it would be done to her Swiss B.A. and agreed to sign a contract.

I'd like to know how much deposit she should ask for and how soon it would be released (I repeat: for 42 days). Could we just arrange that I declare to take care of all damages, should they occur (without any deposit)? It's only 42 days and I told her I'd hardly be at home.
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Old 18.12.2016, 11:16
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Re: Subletting one room in apartment: how to make it legal

A whole house for chf1400?
Twice the rent as a deposit?
Landlord unavailable so have to use an agent?
The owner going through this much hassle for what is very small amount of money in the renting game?

Too many alarm bells for me, I'd walk away and find somewhere else.
There is some room sharing website, hopefully another poster will let you know what it is.
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Old 18.12.2016, 11:16
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Re: Subletting one room in apartment: how to make it legal

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Plus she's out of the country
Big red flag.
A rental con-men are in most of the cases aboard. A Swiss landlord would normally use a local agency.

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and said that regarding payment, it would be done to her Swiss B.A. and agreed to sign a contract.
Major red flag.
Rental deposit should only be paid into special rental deposit account in your name by a Swiss bank. Never ever pay a single Rappen before you have seen the apartment and contract. Specially nothing int an "escrow" account to get the key.

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I heard the amount, as it barely exceeds the amount of the rent for the whole house.
Red flag.
A whole house for CHF 1400 per month? Not that it is impossible but not very likely around Zurich.

Can you share more details about this place (as written in the add) and the reason the landlady gave why she rents out the house. There are some phrases which are only used by scamers.
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Old 18.12.2016, 11:26
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Re: Subletting one room in apartment: how to make it legal

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Plus she's out of the country
If you can't visit the apartment in person, don't even bother with it. 99.9% scam. If she claims she has someone local to handle the sublet, you should be dealing with that person only.

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I'd like to know how much deposit she should ask for and how soon it would be released (I repeat: for 42 days)
By law, the deposit is not strictly required. It's up to you two to agree on it. In sublet case you probably have enough negotiating power to talk the host out of it. Swiss law just limits that it shouldn't be higher than 3 monthly rents and, for your safety, you have a right to have it paid to a special blocked bank account in your name. Don't pay it to the landlord, especially when you don't really know that he/she is who he/she claims to be.

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Could we just arrange that I declare to take care of all damages, should they occur (without any deposit)?
You're liable for damages you cause in any case, that's basic civil law. The purpose of deposit is to bring some money upfront that landlord can grab onto in case you decide not to pay for them. But your liability doesn't end at the deposit.

What you can take is a private liability insurance to cover your damages. This is a less advantageous solution from landlord's perspective, but maybe your host would be happy with it.
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Old 18.12.2016, 11:33
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Re: Subletting one room in apartment: how to make it legal

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Red flag.
A whole house for CHF 1400 per month? Not that it is impossible but not very likely around Zurich.

Can you share more details about this place (as written in the add) and the reason the landlady gave why she rents out the house. There are some phrases which are only used by scamers.
The Add has been removed from where I found it. The house has 3 bedrooms, kitchen and bathroom. It's about a couple who live there and they are away till January 27th. She will have her father-in-law show me the flat.
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Old 18.12.2016, 11:36
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Re: Subletting one room in apartment: how to make it legal

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If you can't visit the apartment in person, don't even bother with it. 99.9% scam. If she claims she has someone local to handle the sublet, you should be dealing with that person only.
Her father-in-law will show me the room.
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Old 18.12.2016, 11:44
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Re: Subletting one room in apartment: how to make it legal

Are you already in the country? Then just go there today and look at it from the outside and even ring the bell and have a chat with whoever is there.
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Old 18.12.2016, 11:47
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Re: Subletting one room in apartment: how to make it legal

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A whole house for chf1400?
Twice the rent as a deposit?
Landlord unavailable so have to use an agent?
The owner going through this much hassle for what is very small amount of money in the renting game?

Too many alarm bells for me, I'd walk away and find somewhere else.
There is some room sharing website, hopefully another poster will let you know what it is.
WG zimmer site is full of offers for students, very few for the other category.
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Old 18.12.2016, 11:48
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Re: Subletting one room in apartment: how to make it legal

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Her father-in-law will show me the room.
You should start with that. First, visit it in person, then sign a contract (ideally with that father-in-law as her representative), then you/they go to the bank with the contract and open the blocked deposit account for you, to which you can pay the deposit if they really insist on it. Don't pay deposit directly to the landlord - large chance of a scam.

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WG zimmer site is full of offers for students, very few for the other category.
Also full of scammers as it's a free website.
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Old 18.12.2016, 12:05
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Re: Subletting one room in apartment: how to make it legal

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The Add has been removed from where I found it.
Just post the very first reply you got from the landlady.
You can also sent it by private message.
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Old 18.12.2016, 12:37
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Re: Subletting one room in apartment: how to make it legal

Riana22, post your request for a room share in accommodation wanted here on the forum and let people know which areas you would like to live in, when you need it, price etc? Someone in the EF community might know of something which would suit you.
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Old 18.12.2016, 12:46
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Re: Subletting one room in apartment: how to make it legal

Thank you for the PM. Looks okeyish.
This was always advertised as a temporary short term letting, correct?
And a fully furnished house?

It is not unusual that people rent out their whole house or apartment when they are away for a long time. Friends of mine did it. But they looked for the tenant way before they left the country, had a dinner with the future tenant just to get to know the other person.

As said before. Go there and do some investigation. It is a nice day.
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