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Old 16.03.2017, 11:21
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How to get apartment deposit back from Schaeppi Grundstucke

I left Switzerland at the end of December but am still struggling to get
my apartment deposit back from Schaeppi Grundstucke.
They had one month(January) of no rental income for my apartment because they delayed two months before awarding the apartment to a prospective tenant.
Eventually when they awarded the apartment to the new tenant in December,
he had to give at least one month's notice at his current accommodation.
So he could only occupy at the beginning of February.
So they appear to be trying to indirectly deduct this from my deposit.
I need to mention that I was in the apartment for around 9 years.

Generally I would say try and avoid Schaeppi Grundstucke at all costs.
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Old 16.03.2017, 11:25
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Re: How to get apartment deposit back from thieving Schaeppi Grundstucke

I handed back an apartment to them in 2011 after giving the required 3 months notice without a Nachmieter. Just handed it back.

I got the full amount back within a few days.

What did you manage to do differently to me?

Two anecdotes, opposite outcome.
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Old 16.03.2017, 11:47
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Re: How to get apartment deposit back from thieving Schaeppi Grundstucke

After reading and searching the Forum, you will no doubt find out that the owner/landlord can with hold the deposit up to 12 months after it was legally handed back. This is to enable the correct extra costs (Nebenkosten) to be taken into account.

A self employed man can submit a bill for his handy work up to 5 years late! But I think a company has only 12 months lee way.
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Old 16.03.2017, 11:52
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Re: How to get apartment deposit back from thieving Schaeppi Grundstucke

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After reading and searching the Forum, you will no doubt find out that the owner/landlord can with hold the deposit up to 12 months after it was legally handed back. This is to enable the correct extra costs (Nebenkosten) to be taken into account.

A self employed man can submit a bill for his handy work up to 5 years late! But I think a company has only 12 months lee way.
They did keep some now I recall for that. Long time ago...
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Old 17.03.2017, 09:37
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Re: How to get apartment deposit back from thieving Schaeppi Grundstucke

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I handed back an apartment to them in 2011 after giving the required 3 months notice without a Nachmieter. Just handed it back.

I got the full amount back within a few days.

What did you manage to do differently to me?

Two anecdotes, opposite outcome.
Thanks for your reply.That was a long time ago.There has probably been
some staff turnover since then.Maybe they have fallen on hard times
in the meantime?
Did you leave the country at the time? Somehow when you leave the country, they seem to think they have a licence to fleece expats.
They had to clean the apartment again, as the new tenant moved in
a month later than planned.So they passed the cleaning cost onto me.Around
900 chf.
Also after 9 years in the apartment, they charged me to replace the seal
on the fridge freezer compartment.As its normally a rubber seal,I feel this is normal wear and tear.I never noticed anything wrong with it.Cost 160 chf.
Also the new tenant purchased a few items from me after he was awarded
the apartment.He looked at and paid me for these items on his final visit.
Schaeppi Grundstucke decided that the apartment had to be cleared and removed these items before the new tenant moved in.The new tenant even
sent them a letter accepting the apartment with these few items.Cost 250 chf.I feel this is theft and they have stolen the items from the new tenant.
Maybe I should get the police involved just to clear my name?
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Old 17.03.2017, 09:50
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Re: How to get apartment deposit back from thieving Schaeppi Grundstucke

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...
Did you leave the country at the time? Somehow when you leave the country, they seem to think they have a licence to fleece expats.
They had to clean the apartment again, as the new tenant moved in
a month later than planned.So they passed the cleaning cost onto me.Around
900 chf....
Yes, I left the country.

So, did you need a Nachmieter, or just hand back with 3 months notice?
In the 2nd case, once they have accepted it then all is done. Complete. No more.

In the first case, why did you need a Nachmieter?
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Old 17.03.2017, 11:14
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Re: How to get apartment deposit back from thieving Schaeppi Grundstucke

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Yes, I left the country.

So, did you need a Nachmieter, or just hand back with 3 months notice?
In the 2nd case, once they have accepted it then all is done. Complete. No more.

In the first case, why did you need a Nachmieter?
I did not need a nachmieter. I handed back with more than 3 months notice.
I left on 31st December and Sloppy Grundstucke did not have someone available on the day to do the handover with me.
So I had to sign a Power of Attorney for the building caretaker to represent me at the handover in January after I already left.But I put in an exclusion clause that they have to OK any deductions from my deposit with me.
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Old 17.03.2017, 11:29
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Re: How to get apartment deposit back from thieving Schaeppi Grundstucke

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I did not need a nachmieter. I handed back with more than 3 months notice.
I left on 31st December and Sloppy Grundstucke did not have someone available on the day to do the handover with me.
So I had to sign a Power of Attorney for the building caretaker to represent me at the handover in January after I already left.But I put in an exclusion clause that they have to OK any deductions from my deposit with me.
Which seems fairly normal, I have never heard of being able to hand over your flat on December 31st. All my contracts so far stated that per that date cancellation/handover is not possible.
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Old 17.03.2017, 11:32
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Re: How to get apartment deposit back from thieving Schaeppi Grundstucke

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I did not need a nachmieter. I handed back with more than 3 months notice.
I left on 31st December and Sloppy Grundstucke did not have someone available on the day to do the handover with me.
So I had to sign a Power of Attorney for the building caretaker to represent me at the handover in January after I already left.But I put in an exclusion clause that they have to OK any deductions from my deposit with me.
Your contract would have said any other month end except December, for obvious reasons.
Like mine

So, you made no proper provision (move out early and AirBnB, stay with a trusted friend, get a friend to handover or come back, etc)

As I said at the top, we had 2 polar opposite outcomes. I found Schaeppi to be quite professional.

Perhaps it's like anal sex: some people's experiences will be far more pleasurable than other people's horror. But I would never say "avoid anal sex"
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Old 17.03.2017, 11:33
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Re: How to get apartment deposit back from thieving Schaeppi Grundstucke

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I did not need a nachmieter. I handed back with more than 3 months notice.
I left on 31st December and Sloppy Grundstucke did not have someone available on the day to do the handover with me.
So I had to sign a Power of Attorney for the building caretaker to represent me at the handover in January after I already left.But I put in an exclusion clause that they have to OK any deductions from my deposit with me.
Assuming this was in ZH, there are only 2 official days a year to give up property, 31 December is not one of them
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Old 17.03.2017, 11:55
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Re: How to get apartment deposit back from Schaeppi Grundstucke

December 31 2016 was a Saturday. Means by the law handover day would have been Tuesday January 3 2017. That is even if December 31 is not an official cancellation date according to contract.

To give someone POA which has zero intend to act in your favor is beyond believe.

If the place was not clean at handover, than it was not clean and it had to be cleaned. How can you prove otherwise when you where not there and had no party there acting in your interest?

For the fridge seal. Even renters association says it is up on the tenant
https://intern.mieterverband.ch/ldt/...ort=K%C3%BChl*
If it was broken than it had to be replaced. How can you prove otherwise when you where not there and had no party there acting in your interest?
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Old 17.03.2017, 12:16
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Re: How to get apartment deposit back from Schaeppi Grundstucke

December is not a month you can have the contract legally end (except by mutual consent)(Kanton Fribourg seems to be the only exception). Thus if your notice said "cancel per December 31" it was automatically shifted to January 31. Assuming you can cancel by 11 month's end, rather than per end of March, June, September.
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Old 17.03.2017, 12:30
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Re: How to get apartment deposit back from Schaeppi Grundstucke

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December is not a month you can have the contract legally end (except by mutual consent)(Kanton Fribourg seems to be the only exception). Thus if your notice said "cancel per December 31" it was automatically shifted to January 31. Assuming you can cancel by 11 month's end, rather than per end of March, June, September.
In ZH where Schaeppi head office is you can only cancel end or March or September, so the OP likely had 3 months potential rent to pay.
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Old 17.03.2017, 12:42
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Re: How to get apartment deposit back from Schaeppi Grundstucke

@Roadrabbit

This situation must be frustrating for you. The more so because, as it seems to me, you don’t really understand some of the basic principles of Swiss tenancy law.

Notice must be given in writing. It is essential to know the contractual obligations of terminating the lease, especially about the notice period and certain specific dates for the end of the lease. 31st December is almost always excluded as a hand-over date.
I’m not writing about the aspect of giving notice, as other posters have already dealt with it.

This post is about the deposit, and for what it is used, and how it is refunded.

The refund of the deposit is directly influenced by the hand-over meeting.
The date for the hand-over must be agreed between the two opposing parties.
It can be any time before the lease ends or, if the lease ends on a weekend, then before noon on the first business day thereafter.

At this appointment, both parties (or their representatives) must be present. In practice, a tenant who just leaves, and returns the keys, automatically forfeits his/her right to present his/her side of things. Ditto someone who gives a Power of Attorney to a person who is unlikely to defend his/her interests.

At the hand-over:
  • The landlord inspects for damages and seeks to claim the costs of these from the tenant. That’s reasonable, because the tenant has a legal duty to return the flat in a good state, at least as good as when he/she moved in, with only minor wear-and-tear.
  • The tenant produces his/her list of damages that were already in the flat when he/she first moved in, and shows that the landlord acknowledged and signed this list way back then.

The landlord tells the tenant for which damages he/she is going to charge the tenant. The landlord may at that moment name only the issue (e.g. scratch in the wooden floor) and state the actual costs of the repairs later, in writing.

In any case, throughout the tenancy and at the end, small repairs (some say under Fr. 150, some say under Fr. 300) are always the tenant’s responsibility.

Disputes, whenever they arise, are often about:
  • such small repairs (because the tenant had not realised that these always had been his/her costs to bear, all along) and
  • cleaning (because the tenant did not clean to the high standard required by the landlord).

Now here’s the sum, with low numbers, for illustration purposes:
Rent was 1000 basic and 200 Nebenkosten (supplementary costs, which include a monthly sum, in advance, for heating).
Deposit was 2x total rent, i.e. 2x (1000 + 200) = 2400.

Handover meeting:
Landlord sees that
  • fridge gasket must be replaced: Tenant’s responsibility. 150
  • cleaning is insufficient: Tenant’s responsibility, let’s just say 5 hours, at an hourly cleaning institutes rate of 50. 5 x 50 = 250
  • furniture left by tenant in flat (for the new tenant): 2 extra hours for the cleaning staff to move the furniture out so they can clean properly: 2 x 50 = 100.
Deposit 2400
minus 150 + 250 + 100 = 500
remaining portion of deposit 2400 – 500 = 1900.
At this point, the landlord is completely within his/her rights to hold this remainder of the deposit aside for another year. Why? Because of the heating calculation.

Although in the monthly Nebenkosten the tenant paid one twelfth of the anticipated heating costs, the real costs can vary considerably each year, based on
  • the price of oil that year
  • how cold the winter was
  • how much the tenants, throughout the building, used the heating.
Naturally, the landlord cannot make this grand, complex calculation until the heating season is over and the true figures are available.

Sometimes, the tenant(s) will receive a refund, if too much was paid.
In other years, the tenant(s) will be called upon to pay in, if the season was more expensive than the anticipated amount.

For tenants who are leaving, the landlord makes this sum:
deposit paid
minus repairs/damages/extra cleaning
minus (or plus) any proportion of the heating costs to be squared up.
And then, within a year, refunds the tenant the remainder… as long as the landlord has the banking details of the tenant who left.

I hope this explanation helps you to see that though you were unwise to leave the caretaker (who, after all, is employed by the landlord and will act for them) to represent you, it may yet be that the landlord will, in due course, refund you whatever might remain of your deposit.
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Old 17.03.2017, 13:32
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Re: How to get apartment deposit back from Schaeppi Grundstucke

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In ZH where Schaeppi head office is you can only cancel end or March or September, so the OP likely had 3 months potential rent to pay.
Schaeppi allow any month end except December.
Or did when I rented from them
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Old 17.03.2017, 14:02
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Re: How to get apartment deposit back from Schaeppi Grundstucke

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In ZH where Schaeppi head office is you can only cancel end or March or September, so the OP likely had 3 months potential rent to pay.
Indeed only two "ortsübliche" dates in Zürich. And Yet one of my two rental contracts I had in Zürich way back when was cancellable each of the other 11 months. We don't know which applies to OP.
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Old 17.03.2017, 14:11
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Re: How to get apartment deposit back from Schaeppi Grundstucke

Same here, but as mentioned, not per December 31st
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Old 17.03.2017, 18:24
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Which seems fairly normal, I have never heard of being able to hand over your flat on December 31st. All my contracts so far stated that per that date cancellation/handover is not possible.
I was available for the handover on the 31st December.Sloppy
Grundstucke was not available.That's a fact.
By the way, I had given the proper 3 month's notice via registered mail
and it was accepted unconditionally, due to the fact that I had to leave
Switzerland by 31st December due to circumstances beyond my control.

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December 31 2016 was a Saturday. Means by the law handover day would have been Tuesday January 3 2017. That is even if December 31 is not an official cancellation date according to contract.

To give someone POA which has zero intend to act in your favor is beyond believe.

If the place was not clean at handover, than it was not clean and it had to be cleaned. How can you prove otherwise when you where not there and had no party there acting in your interest?

For the fridge seal. Even renters association says it is up on the tenant
https://intern.mieterverband.ch/ldt/...ort=K%C3%BChl*
If it was broken than it had to be replaced. How can you prove otherwise when you where not there and had no party there acting in your interest?
I was in the apartment for 9 years.The combined fridge/freezer is definitely older than the stated 10 years within which it would be the tenants problem.
Unfortunately I had no choice but to give POA to the caretaker whom I know pretty well after 9 years of dealing with him.
The apartment was spotless when I left but obviously would be dirty again when the new tenant moved in 30 days later.

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In ZH where Schaeppi head office is you can only cancel end or March or September, so the OP likely had 3 months potential rent to pay.
No,I definitely did not have to pay another 3 months.I already mentioned that.

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@Roadrabbit

This situation must be frustrating for you. The more so because, as it seems to me, you don’t really understand some of the basic principles of Swiss tenancy law.

Notice must be given in writing. It is essential to know the contractual obligations of terminating the lease, especially about the notice period and certain specific dates for the end of the lease. 31st December is almost always excluded as a hand-over date.
I’m not writing about the aspect of giving notice, as other posters have already dealt with it.

This post is about the deposit, and for what it is used, and how it is refunded.

The refund of the deposit is directly influenced by the hand-over meeting.
The date for the hand-over must be agreed between the two opposing parties.
It can be any time before the lease ends or, if the lease ends on a weekend, then before noon on the first business day thereafter.

At this appointment, both parties (or their representatives) must be present. In practice, a tenant who just leaves, and returns the keys, automatically forfeits his/her right to present his/her side of things. Ditto someone who gives a Power of Attorney to a person who is unlikely to defend his/her interests.

At the hand-over:
  • The landlord inspects for damages and seeks to claim the costs of these from the tenant. That’s reasonable, because the tenant has a legal duty to return the flat in a good state, at least as good as when he/she moved in, with only minor wear-and-tear.
  • The tenant produces his/her list of damages that were already in the flat when he/she first moved in, and shows that the landlord acknowledged and signed this list way back then.

The landlord tells the tenant for which damages he/she is going to charge the tenant. The landlord may at that moment name only the issue (e.g. scratch in the wooden floor) and state the actual costs of the repairs later, in writing.

In any case, throughout the tenancy and at the end, small repairs (some say under Fr. 150, some say under Fr. 300) are always the tenant’s responsibility.

Disputes, whenever they arise, are often about:
  • such small repairs (because the tenant had not realised that these always had been his/her costs to bear, all along) and
  • cleaning (because the tenant did not clean to the high standard required by the landlord).

Now here’s the sum, with low numbers, for illustration purposes:
Rent was 1000 basic and 200 Nebenkosten (supplementary costs, which include a monthly sum, in advance, for heating).
Deposit was 2x total rent, i.e. 2x (1000 + 200) = 2400.

Handover meeting:
Landlord sees that
  • fridge gasket must be replaced: Tenant’s responsibility. 150
  • cleaning is insufficient: Tenant’s responsibility, let’s just say 5 hours, at an hourly cleaning institutes rate of 50. 5 x 50 = 250
  • furniture left by tenant in flat (for the new tenant): 2 extra hours for the cleaning staff to move the furniture out so they can clean properly: 2 x 50 = 100.
Deposit 2400
minus 150 + 250 + 100 = 500
remaining portion of deposit 2400 – 500 = 1900.
At this point, the landlord is completely within his/her rights to hold this remainder of the deposit aside for another year. Why? Because of the heating calculation.

Although in the monthly Nebenkosten the tenant paid one twelfth of the anticipated heating costs, the real costs can vary considerably each year, based on
  • the price of oil that year
  • how cold the winter was
  • how much the tenants, throughout the building, used the heating.
Naturally, the landlord cannot make this grand, complex calculation until the heating season is over and the true figures are available.

Sometimes, the tenant(s) will receive a refund, if too much was paid.
In other years, the tenant(s) will be called upon to pay in, if the season was more expensive than the anticipated amount.

For tenants who are leaving, the landlord makes this sum:
deposit paid
minus repairs/damages/extra cleaning
minus (or plus) any proportion of the heating costs to be squared up.
And then, within a year, refunds the tenant the remainder… as long as the landlord has the banking details of the tenant who left.

I hope this explanation helps you to see that though you were unwise to leave the caretaker (who, after all, is employed by the landlord and will act for them) to represent you, it may yet be that the landlord will, in due course, refund you whatever might remain of your deposit.
WOW.Thanks for the long reply,but I do understand the whole rental process
quite well actually.

Last edited by 3Wishes; 17.03.2017 at 22:39. Reason: merging consecutive replies, try the multi-quote button, to the right of quote :)
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Old 17.03.2017, 18:40
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Re: How to get apartment deposit back from Schaeppi Grundstucke

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Schaeppi allow any month end except December.
Or did when I rented from them
Again.In my case December 31st was totally accepted and not a problem.
I did not have to find a new tenant.
Having said that I was extremely helpful and allowed around 25 prospective
tenants through the apartment. I was available for three months for viewings.
I even printed their application forms on my own printer.

After being a perfect tenant for 9 years and totally helpful in every way,I am extremely pissed off at having my deposit "stolen" for no valid reasons.
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Old 17.03.2017, 19:11
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Re: How to get apartment deposit back from Schaeppi Grundstucke

Whatever.

Everyone else has called you out on the 31 December handover.

You have ed up somewhere but won't admit anything.

To any prospective renter via Schaeppi Grundstück I suggest​ you ignore this complaint. There are far worse landlords out there.
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