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Old 24.02.2010, 18:43
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Rights vis vis real estate agents (regie)

Hello to you all,
This is my first time posting although I often read through the forums for great tips from you all. I would like to put a query to you knowledgeable people regarding a slight situation with my regie.
Yesterday I received a letter from my regie informing me that I must be at home between 8h30 and 11h30 on a certain date (less than one week away) due to an expert evaluation of the building.

I called up the regie to say that I would be at home at that time however as I work this is not easy for me to do, therefore if it would be possible I requested whether she could ask the expert evaluation team to start their work on the first floor where I live so that I could try to get to work by 10 rather than 1pm... Boy! I got the biggest attitude ever in response. The regie lady told me that she obviously could not make any kind of request just for one person and I was the only one making a big deal out of it. I informed her that if I was the one person making such a request could she not ask the team to start with my floor. She told me that I should either just be there during the times noted in the letter or leave my keys with the concierge.

Some background information, there used to be a lovely concierge that lived in our building. She fell ill and so they replaced her with another lady that does not live in my building and who I have never met or seen. I do not feel comfortable leaving my keys with anyone I do not know or would not recognize and told her that I would not feel comfortable doing that and therefore I will be at home but it would help me soo much if the team could come earlier rather than later. In response I was asked by the lady at the regie whether I thought that my house was full of such precious things that people would want to steal from me ?! . I told her that was an inappropriate remark and never implied such a thing. I reiterated that I was ready to be home but was phoning her to see if a request to start at the bottom and work their way up could be communicated.

She then told me that the experts will now start at the roof and work their way down (meaning my house will be one of the last to be visited).
I had no further words nor could I maintain a conversation with such a bully.

I guess this is partly to vent but also to ask:
Is there a place I can go to complain about her bullish behavior? or are regies all poweful in this tight housing market?
Secondly, are renters required (by law or bail?) to leave their keys with the concierge in such cases? Shouldn't regies try to be more accomodating to those of us who work and are not available during the day? Do we have any rights to say "No this day is not good for me and I do not want to leave my keys with the concierge, pick another time?"

A further note that when our entire building was having on and off hot water problems and we collectively signed a letter and sent it through a lawyer, it took our regie 8 months to reply. Now that they want something they think they can ask for it with less than one week notice and get their way? I understand that regies control and have much power in Geneva but this seems to be too one-sided.

Thank you for reading if you got this far.
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