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-   -   Property management company rejecting prospective non-Swiss tenants (https://www.englishforum.ch/leaving-switzerland/238862-property-management-company-rejecting-prospective-non-swiss-tenants.html)

ELdEL 16.08.2015 23:07

Property management company rejecting prospective non-Swiss tenants
 
Has anyone ever heard of a property management company rejecting prospective tenants (with all the correct documents) because they are not Swiss?

We had to find replacements for our place in Zurich as we weren't able to give three months notice (due to being messed around by the wife's employers), which we duly did; and then they were rejected for not being Swiss.

There is no way you could get away with this sort of open discrimination in the UK and I'm a little shocked that they can here.

greenmount 16.08.2015 23:26

Re: Has anyone ever heard of a property...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ELdEL (Post 2434367)
management company rejecting prospective tenants (with all the correct documents) because they are not Swiss?

We had to find replacements for our place in Zurich as we weren't able to give three months notice (due to being messed around by the wife's employers), which we duly did; and then they were rejected for not being Swiss.

There is no way you could get away with this sort of open discrimination in the UK and I'm a little shocked that they can here.

:rofl:

And I suppose you're saying this as a Brit....:D

fatmanfilms 16.08.2015 23:51

Re: Has anyone ever heard of a property...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ELdEL (Post 2434367)
management company rejecting prospective tenants (with all the correct documents) because they are not Swiss?

We had to find replacements for our place in Zurich as we weren't able to give three months notice (due to being messed around by the wife's employers), which we duly did; and then they were rejected for not being Swiss.

There is no way you could get away with this sort of open discrimination in the UK and I'm a little shocked that they can here.

If they can afford the rent, have a B permit & will proceed with signing, I think you can legally wash your hands as you have done what is required by law. Join the renters association & get advise.

nanners 17.08.2015 07:18

Re: Has anyone ever heard of a property...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by fatmanfilms (Post 2434375)
If they can afford the rent, have a B permit & will proceed with signing, I think you can legally wash your hands as you have done what is required by law.

I agree. That's all you needed to do, as far as I understand it.

ELdEL 17.08.2015 09:39

Quote:

Originally Posted by greenmount (Post 2434369)
:rofl:

And I suppose you're saying this as a Brit....:D

Your point being?

The prospective renters were Spanish. My nationality is irrelevant; as clearly your participation in the thread is.

Quote:

Originally Posted by fatmanfilms (Post 2434375)
If they can afford the rent, have a B permit & will proceed with signing, I think you can legally wash your hands as you have done what is required by law. Join the renters association & get advise.

We're leaving Switzerland; so it's not really too much of a concern for us. Annoying, as the people were going to buy a lot of our furniture that we now have to dispose of ourselves, but nothing that can't be dealt with. My point was more to enquire if this level of institutional discrimination is common/acceptable in this country?

Guest 17.08.2015 09:47

Re: Has anyone ever heard of a property...
 
If the can clearly afford the rent, have correct permit, etc- then the owner/agency can only refuse a tenant if there are strong reasons to do so and I believe, have to state what those reasons are. 'Being foreign' would not be acceptable as a reason, I think. But if it is a building full of old couples, a group of students may not be suitable.

Such a shame you didn't join Asloca/Mietverband when you first came- as it is much easier to get advice as an existing member. Are you still in CH or back in UK? Try and join NOW and get them to advise.

Again, I really recommend that anyone who comes to Switzerland and rents a place join Asloca/Mietverband asap, it's not expensive and will be worth its price in gold if you come a-cropper in any way.

CorsebouTheReturn 17.08.2015 09:55

Quote:

Originally Posted by ELdEL (Post 2434478)
Your point being?

The prospective renters were Spanish. My nationality is irrelevant; as clearly your participation in the thread is.

First, in UK, there are landlords who can do the same and discriminate based on nationality. Even if there are laws against that, the landlords simply don't have to justify "why", the result will be the same.

Second, yes it sucks and yes it's annoying in Switzerland that they are so openly rejecting prospective tenants based on nationality. In a way it shows how the "migrants" are treated (they are called "foreigners here, whatever their efforts). Yet the landlord has the right to chose his tenant, and the agency are just obeying, complying with that.
And knowing Swiss culture, I'm sure they did not put gloves to announce that, and they did not even realize saying something bad. My problem with that is that they can't provide a valid justification, since they also request a 3 month deposit which can easily protect them about the alleged scenario of a "foreigner tenant leaving suddenly". But stereotypes and negative past experiences of people cheating and disappearing has indeed contributed to that reaction.
Also, the rent market, which is unique, gives plenty of powers to the owners since they can chose between hundreds of applicants and ask for a high rent.

So the real question is what is more annoying? Knowing that some landlord are discriminating, or listening that they are discriminating?


Third, it does not change anything for the leaving tenant, if you have provided 1 tenant which "can pay" (solvable, in French), you are freed from your obligations. Even if the landlord rejects that application because the person has yellow socks, smell cheese or worse, has a foreigner nationality. In other words, you don't care anymore, if you have respected the process, you are freed.

Fourth, you can also leave prior 3 months notice:

http://www.homegate.ch/rent/advisor/...ly-termination
In order to protect the tenant from needless financial obligations, tenancy law in Art. 264 of the Code of Obligations opens up to that person the ability of a privileged breach of contract. If he suggests to the landlord a reasonable replacement tenant who is willing to assume the existing contract at the same terms and conditions prior to the standard date of giving notice, the current tenant is freed of any rental payment obligations.

Read Code obligations.


Five, I think the guy's contribution was interesting and relevant, and even if I did not get exactly what he was referring to, I can see a few scenario where that comment contributes to the debate, and to your topic.

Quote:

Originally Posted by ELdEL (Post 2434484)
We're leaving Switzerland; so it's not really too much of a concern for us. Annoying, as the people were going to buy a lot of our furniture that we now have to dispose of ourselves, but nothing that can't be dealt with. My point was more to enquire if this level of institutional discrimination is common/acceptable in this country?

Ha interesting, you did not feel like "forcing their hand" to propose them to take over your lease, IF they would buy your furniture?
Funny, did you propose other tenants to the landlord, like some who were "not buying" your furniture?

Seems you've also been unfair here. Funny, I did not read that in the initial complain.

Mullhollander 17.08.2015 09:57

Re: Has anyone ever heard of a property...
 
This HEV article on Mietrecht says that if the presented Nachmieter meets the below conditions, the landlord can still accept or reject the Nachmieter. If he rejects the Nachmieter, however, for subjective reasons, e.g., nationality, race, religion, occupation, etc., the landlord must then find his own tenant.

The required conditions mentioned are:
1. suitability
2. ability to pay
3. willing to take over the current rental agreement

http://www.hev-zuerich.ch/der_zuerch...-201006-10.htm

Urs Max 17.08.2015 10:00

Re: Has anyone ever heard of a property...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by fatmanfilms (Post 2434375)
If they can afford the rent, have a B permit & will proceed with signing, I think you can legally wash your hands as you have done what is required by law. Join the renters association & get advise.

Even more so as OP is foreign himself.

Guest 17.08.2015 10:06

Re: Has anyone ever heard of a property...
 
Has the agency been able to get a certificate that they are 'solvable' eg do not have debts- and is the rent no more than 1/3 or salary - which represents in Swiss terms 'being able to afford the rent'?

Here is from the ImmoScout site:

Le locataire potentiel est considéré comme tolérable s'il présente un profil adéquat: un batteur professionnel ne convient pas à une résidence pour troisième âge et un appartement d'une pièce n’est pas fait pour une famille de quatre personnes. Toutefois la religion, l’appartenance ethnique et la nationalité ne peuvent pas être invoquées comme motif de refus.

In short, religion, ethnicity or nationality cannot be cause for refusal- but the age group or the number of prospective inhabitants of the flat can.

Their site also states that ONE suitable tenant is enough- providing they are suitable and take on the lease at same price and conditions- but it is wise to have several. That agency has 2 weeks to do the necessary checks on the prospective tenant- and if they then find legal cause to refuse, you are stuck.

Belgianmum 17.08.2015 10:11

Re: Has anyone ever heard of a property...
 
Quote:

Has the agency been able to get a certificate that they are 'solvable' eg do not have debts- and is the rent no more than 1/3 or salary - which represents in Swiss terms 'being able to afford the rent'?

Since you are so keen to learn this morning here's another one for you.:)

Solvent.
http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/solvent

Guest 17.08.2015 10:38

Re: Has anyone ever heard of a property...
 
yep, thanks- 6.5 years out of the UK is taking its toll.

ELdEL 17.08.2015 10:54

Quote:

Originally Posted by CorsebouTheReturn (Post 2434498)
Ha interesting, you did not feel like "forcing their hand" to propose them to take over your lease, IF they would buy your furniture?
Funny, did you propose other tenants to the landlord, like some who were "not buying" your furniture?

Seems you've also been unfair here. Funny, I did not read that in the initial complain.

Thank you for all your contributions.

This is not a thread about what is/isn't possible in the UK.

Nor is it a thread relating to what our obligations regards rent/finding other tenants are.

I don't recall asking whether or not you find the other poster's comments relevant.

FYI, no, we did not force their hand.

FYI 2 - your use of quotation marks is incorrect. In English, they are only used to quote someone/something directly.

Quote:

If the can clearly afford the rent, have correct permit, etc- then the owner/agency can only refuse a tenant if there are strong reasons to do so and I believe, have to state what those reasons are. 'Being foreign' would not be acceptable as a reason, I think. But if it is a building full of old couples, a group of students may not be suitable.

Such a shame you didn't join Asloca/Mietverband when you first came- as it is much easier to get advice as an existing member. Are you still in CH or back in UK? Try and join NOW and get them to advise.

Again, I really recommend that anyone who comes to Switzerland and rents a place join Asloca/Mietverband asap, it's not expensive and will be worth its price in gold if you come a-cropper in any way.
Thanks for the tip. We probably should, but probably won't, take it any further. I just wanted to find out if anyone had had a similar experience.

We are still in Switzerland, but moving to Spain in three weeks.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mullhollander (Post 2434499)
This HEV article on Mietrecht says that if the presented Nachmieter meets the below conditions, the landlord can still accept or reject the Nachmieter. If he rejects the Nachmieter, however, for subjective reasons, e.g., nationality, race, religion, occupation, etc., the landlord must then find his own tenant.

The required conditions mentioned are:
1. suitability
2. ability to pay
3. willing to take over the current rental agreement

http://www.hev-zuerich.ch/der_zuerch...-201006-10.htm

Thanks for the input. Yes, they are going to find their own tenant. I just wanted to find out if this sort of practice was something that other people had experienced.

me.anon 17.08.2015 11:35

Re: Has anyone ever heard of a property...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ELdEL (Post 2434367)
. . . and then they were rejected for not being Swiss.
. . .

Did you get their exact reason for rejection in writing and did you get it directly from the property agent ? Usually a property agent is not so unsubtle, although the effect may be the same.

CorsebouTheReturn 17.08.2015 11:41

Quote:

Originally Posted by ELdEL (Post 2434551)
Thank you for all your contributions.

This is not a thread about what is/isn't possible in the UK.

Nor is it a thread relating to what our obligations regards rent/finding other tenants are.

I don't recall asking whether or not you find the other poster's comments relevant.

FYI, no, we did not force their hand.

FYI 2 - your use of quotation marks is incorrect. In English, they are only used to quote someone/something directly.

Funny, that [you think you] are setting the "rules".
That is internet, a public forum, where people can reply freely to your posts.
I do find "funny" to have identified so quickly that others are doing allegedly wrong (some discrimination) yet to quickly discover that you're doing something very fishy with "furniture".
So yes you asked about "discrimination", I took wonderful initiative to point you out on something else. Are you annoyed with that?

As for my use of English language, consider it a courtesy, free of charge (same as my useful advice), so don't expect it to be professional quality.
Especially that we are talking about events in Switzerland where English is not an official language.

Anyway, I don't care what you asked, what you want, and if I feel like bashing you i'll do it happily again. Shame though, already regretting offering you useful advice earlier.


:kissass:

Quote:

Originally Posted by ELdEL (Post 2434553)
Thanks for the input. Yes, they are going to find their own tenant. I just wanted to find out if this sort of practice was something that other people had experienced.

If you would use the search function, you'll discover that it's common practice and that the topic has been discussed many times.

But indeed it seems that, although your command of English is truly impressive, your computer use, basic search functions and understanding of public forums are rather limited.*

Food for thoughts?

*Edit: Oh and obviously I forgot to mention in the "limited skills list" your understanding of Swiss rental agreement contracts, Swiss laws in respect of "Code des obligations". My bad.

Confloozed 17.08.2015 13:09

Re: Property management company rejecting prospective non-Swiss tenants
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ELdEL (Post 2434367)
Has anyone ever heard of a property management company rejecting prospective tenants (with all the correct documents) because they are not Swiss?

We had to find replacements for our place in Zurich as we weren't able to give three months notice (due to being messed around by the wife's employers), which we duly did; and then they were rejected for not being Swiss.

There is no way you could get away with this sort of open discrimination in the UK and I'm a little shocked that they can here.

Yes. I also have heard of an Iraqi landlord who wont allow Swiss tenants. Sadly, you are allowed to discriminate in Switzerland.

batsoupdragon 17.08.2015 18:38

Re: Has anyone ever heard of a property...
 
Quote:

If the can clearly afford the rent, have correct permit, etc- then the owner/agency can only refuse a tenant if there are strong reasons to do so and I believe, have to state what those reasons are. 'Being foreign' would not be acceptable as a reason, I think. But if it is a building full of old couples, a group of students may not be suitable.

Such a shame you didn't join Asloca/Mietverband when you first came- as it is much easier to get advice as an existing member. Are you still in CH or back in UK? Try and join NOW and get them to advise.

Again, I really recommend that anyone who comes to Switzerland and rents a place join Asloca/Mietverband asap, it's not expensive and will be worth its price in gold if you come a-cropper in any way.
Odile,

is there a website or other way to contact them as i'm about to rent an apartment and losing 3 months deposit on it would make me cry. a lot.

Nixi 17.08.2015 19:08

Re: Property management company rejecting prospective non-Swiss tenants
 
mieterverband.ch for the German speaking part of Switzerland

Guest 17.08.2015 19:35

Re: Has anyone ever heard of a property...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by batsoupdragon (Post 2434822)
Odile,

is there a website or other way to contact them as i'm about to rent an apartment and losing 3 months deposit on it would make me cry. a lot.

The renter's assoc./Mieterverband/Asloca will not help you reduce your deposit though - deposits are perfectly legal up to a maximum of three months rent, and while you can ask your prospective landlord/agency to change the deposit to an insurance (with you ending up paying a yearly fee for the insurance - search the forum for "swisscaution"), this is rarely done by landlords/agencies and it's viewed negatively in some places if the prospective tenant asks for it or for reduction of the deposit. They might go the easier way then and just take a tenant who'll pay the 3 months deposit.

batsoupdragon 17.08.2015 19:56

Re: Has anyone ever heard of a property...
 
Quote:

The renter's assoc./Mieterverband/Asloca will not help you reduce your deposit though - deposits are perfectly legal up to a maximum of three months rent, and while you can ask your prospective landlord/agency to change the deposit to an insurance (with you ending up paying a yearly fee for the insurance - search the forum for "swisscaution"), this is rarely done by landlords/agencies and it's viewed negatively in some places if the prospective tenant asks for it or for reduction of the deposit. They might go the easier way then and just take a tenant who'll pay the 3 months deposit.
thank you kindly for taking the time to provide this information. much appreciated!


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