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Old 17.09.2019, 00:03
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Experience with the Schlichtungsbehörde as a landlord?

Recently bought a flat in kanton ZH with a tenant in it.
I need to live in it myself, so immediately served double the required notice (6m) on the advice of a lawyer to ensure no problems.

They are now taking me to the Schlichtungsstelle to contest it. Any experience? Should I get a lawyer? I don't want to, but they have one.
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Old 17.09.2019, 01:07
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Re: Experience with the Schlichtungsbehörde as a landlord?

If you are fully aware of the laws that apply and the procedures I don't see a need for a lawyer. If you are not aware of such, well better bring one along in such case.
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Old 17.09.2019, 07:46
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Re: Experience with the Schlichtungsbehörde as a landlord?

I have a basic idea, but it seems crazy to spend hundreds or thousands for a lawyer at a simple mediation. The termination is legally binding, in my opinion totally reasonable, and I don't understand why they are contesting it.
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Old 17.09.2019, 08:53
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Re: Experience with the Schlichtungsbehörde as a landlord?

Following are comments regarding my experience with a Schlichtungsgericht:
1. The arbitration court consisted of a lead judge, a technical expert (construction engineer) and another judge. The plaintiffs (renters) were present and represented by an attorney. A representative for the landlord was present but was not an attorney.
2. The session consisted of reviewing documents previously submitted, additional documents submitted that day and explanations of documents by the plaintiffs and defendent's representative.
3. After input from the technical expert and the lead judge, an agreement was drafted and signed by the renters and the landlord's representative.

Opinions:
1. The court was fair in the proceedings and decision.
2. The decision in this case was primarily based on the written documents.
3. Although the defendent's attorney presented the case eloquently, the hiring of an attorney by the defendents was probably unnecessary.
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Old 17.09.2019, 09:20
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Re: Experience with the Schlichtungsbehörde as a landlord?

Thanks a lot. This is very helpful to know.

I have been informed that their exact reasons will be given at the Schlichtung - but I feel like I should be informed in advance? It's difficult to argue if you aren't sure what there is to contest.
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Old 17.09.2019, 12:34
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Re: Experience with the Schlichtungsbehörde as a landlord?

If the tenant has been in the property for 20yrs with out a rent rise then their argument will be that they can't afford another flat or will not be able to find the equivalent for the same price. So they might think you will contribute to their extra costs.
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Old 17.09.2019, 13:01
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Re: Experience with the Schlichtungsbehörde as a landlord?

It is not clear what will happen and whether a lawyer can help. I guess you made sure that the formalities of the cancellation were observed such as the correct format of the notice and the dates were within the deadlines.

You bought the property with an existing tenant so maybe you accepted the risk that you would not be able to move in immediately or paid less for the object.

As has been pointed out, the personal circumstances of the tenants can be taken into consideration:

(Ger: ) https://www.beobachter.ch/wohnen/mie...-koffer-packen
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Old 17.09.2019, 17:29
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Re: Experience with the Schlichtungsbehörde as a landlord?

This article lists situations that a renter can present to an arbitration court to fight a rent contract termination, even if the termination has been correctly filed. It can lengthen the termination by up to four years, if the arbitration court so decides:
  • Scarce financial conditions
  • Advanced age
  • Deep roots in the neighborhood
  • Illness
  • School change of children
  • Exams or completion of an apprenticeship
  • High occupational burden, which leaves no time for housing search
  • Job search
  • Scarce supply of affordable apartments
https://ratgeber.immowelt.ch/a/kuend...n-koennen.html


For other articles, search on "mietvertrag kündigung anfechten", "kündigung wegen eigenbedarf schweiz".
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Old 17.09.2019, 21:04
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Re: Experience with the Schlichtungsbehörde as a landlord?

Thanks all for the information. Sigh... what a pain!
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Old 18.09.2019, 02:17
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Re: Experience with the Schlichtungsbehörde as a landlord?

I think the tenants can have their lease extended to the maximum of 24 months in the worse case scenario. Not sure... this helps you

https://www.gerichte-zh.ch/themen/mi...uendigung.html
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Old 18.09.2019, 07:51
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Re: Experience with the Schlichtungsbehörde as a landlord?

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I think the tenants can have their lease extended to the maximum of 24 months in the worse case scenario. Not sure... this helps you

https://www.gerichte-zh.ch/themen/mi...uendigung.html
48 Months maximum.

OP should do well to think of different scenarios to avoid having to decide on what he is willing to offer if negotiations would happen to avoid being surprised. If the renter lacks the financials to move at such short term he could for example offer to do the last 3 months for free when keeping the 6 months term.

Also have a proper look around at what the chances are for the renter to find something sort of equal within 6 months.
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Old 18.09.2019, 08:18
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Re: Experience with the Schlichtungsbehörde as a landlord?

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I think the tenants can have their lease extended to the maximum of 24 months in the worse case scenario.
The maximum is 4 years. Although rarely conceded.
https://www.beobachter.ch/wohnen/mie...langer-bleiben
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Old 18.09.2019, 11:57
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Re: Experience with the Schlichtungsbehörde as a landlord?

Thank you. Those are very good points. This is really helping me to build up a good argument! Many thanks!
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Old 18.09.2019, 23:20
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Re: Experience with the Schlichtungsbehörde as a landlord?

As most always you want to check your contract. IIRC if the mediation suggests an extension, the former owner is liable unless such was explicitly excluded. If it doesn't, you probably want a lawyer right away to avoid becoming liable for their loss, e.g. because you didn't inform them day before yesterday so they can protect themselves.

If such a liability is excluded in your contract:
Remember to mention the unusually long cancel term. Your need to move in because you've already given notice may be a factor in your favor.

Perhaps also mention that your open to suggestions and willing to help, for instance by accepting their moving out during the notice period. Unfortunately instead of seeking an amicable/better solution with you directly they went to the arbitration court immediately.
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Old 19.09.2019, 02:14
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Re: Experience with the Schlichtungsbehörde as a landlord?

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As most always you want to check your contract. IIRC if the mediation suggests an extension, the former owner is liable unless such was explicitly excluded. If it doesn't, you probably want a lawyer right away to avoid becoming liable for their loss, e.g. because you didn't inform them day before yesterday so they can protect themselves.
Why would the former owner be liable for an extension unless specifically excluded?
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Old 19.09.2019, 08:05
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Re: Experience with the Schlichtungsbehörde as a landlord?

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Why would the former owner be liable for an extension unless specifically excluded?
I guess it's because it reduces the house's value in the same way a hidden defect may, in both cases the apartment can't be used as one would normally expect.
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Old 19.09.2019, 08:31
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Re: Experience with the Schlichtungsbehörde as a landlord?

My colleague moved to bigger apartment just before kindergarten starts but within 1 year of moving landlord sold apartment to someone and was given notice to vacate. Obviously he was pissed off. He took matter to the Schlichtungsstelleand with the help of a lawyer. I guess he got 12 months+ extension. During the process he started looking apartment nearby so that his daughter don't have to change school. As soon as he found new apartment he moved out. Overall stressful experience but worth for tenant to buy some time.

You decided to buy property with tenant so you should be ready to share the pain with the tenant. I am happy that such laws exist otherwise in some country tenant have no say.


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Recently bought a flat in kanton ZH with a tenant in it.
I need to live in it myself, so immediately served double the required notice (6m) on the advice of a lawyer to ensure no problems.

They are now taking me to the Schlichtungsstelle to contest it. Any experience? Should I get a lawyer? I don't want to, but they have one.
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Old 19.09.2019, 10:31
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Re: Experience with the Schlichtungsbehörde as a landlord?

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I guess it's because it reduces the house's value in the same way a hidden defect may, in both cases the apartment can't be used as one would normally expect.
Given that OP bought the house knowing that it was rented out he is getting exactly what he could expect.

I do not see any legal reason why the seller has to pay up if it takes OP longer to get rid of the renter. You presented it as a fact so surely you can back it up with laws or previous cases.
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Old 19.09.2019, 10:41
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Re: Experience with the Schlichtungsbehörde as a landlord?

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I guess it's because it reduces the house's value in the same way a hidden defect may, in both cases the apartment can't be used as one would normally expect.
An existing tenant is not hidden nor surprising any way. Art. 261 OR https://www.admin.ch/opc/en/classifi...ndex.html#a261 clearly states what happens with an existing rental contact in case ownership of the property changes. Do you have any reliable third party source such as from HEV, Weka, or a court ruling which supports your view that the previous owner should be liable by default in case the existing tenant can not be removed in "good time" ?
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Old 20.09.2019, 10:39
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Re: Experience with the Schlichtungsbehörde as a landlord?

At the end of the day there is a rental income, so if they get a short extension, it's manageable. It's pure and simply the fact that I want to live in there myself - I would certainly not pursue the seller over this, I was of course aware of the risks when I bought and just wanted tips on what a Schlichtung is like, and what I can expect.

Thank you all for your valuable contributions.
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