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Old 09.07.2019, 10:04
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Leaving flat in Lausanne with Domicim and Swisscaution... Get prepared!

Hi, I am living alone in Lausanne, where I am renting a flat with Domicim since December 1st 2018. I do not speak French (Italian, English, a bit of German). Also, I did not pay a deposit caution, I am instead paying the Swisscaution annual fee.


The time has come for me to leave this hellhole I have read through the forum and found many useful hints (thank you so much guys, you are amazing!) but there is still something that I found unclear, namely regarding the Swisscaution cancellation.


My Domicim contract states that I can leave the flat on the last day of any month, except December 31st, and provided I give 4 months of notice. This means that I am going to send such notice (in French, via registered mail) in the next few days (before July 31st). I know I can leave before that if I find another tenant, but I don't want to bother with that, and I'm not in a hurry anyway.



Back last year, I applied for the Swisscaution rental deposit insurance in November, and if I remember correctly I was only invoiced for 2019 because it was end of the year already. But to cancel the Swisscaution insurance I need the signature of the vultures from Domicim. I am afraid that, even if I leave the flat on November 30th, they will fail to provide a signature before December 31st, and so I will have to pay another year of Swisscaution.


Is there anything I can do to avoid this (likely) scenario? Would it help to register with Asloca? I didn't do it when I moved in because my company provided a relocation agent who checked the contract and took part in the move-in inspection with me, but if I register with Asloca now am I in time to ask them to help me with the move-out inspection?


I also have a Fortuna legal protection insurance with Generali (which I never used). Would it help?


Thanks in advance for any help!
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Old 09.07.2019, 11:16
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Re: Leaving flat in Lausanne with Domicim and Swisscaution... Get prepared!

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I also have a Fortuna legal protection insurance with Generali (which I never used). Would it help?
without knowing the details of your policy, this sounds like a good place to start.
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Old 09.07.2019, 12:17
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Re: Leaving flat in Lausanne with Domicim and Swisscaution... Get prepared!

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Is there anything I can do to avoid this (likely) scenario?
Your insurance policy isn't tied to the rental contract as such. Cancel on time and you should be fine.
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Old 09.07.2019, 12:40
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Re: Leaving flat in Lausanne with Domicim and Swisscaution... Get prepared!

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Your insurance policy isn't tied to the rental contract as such. Cancel on time and you should be fine.

Yes, but in order to cancel it I also need the signature from my landlord (Domicim in this case). Because basically they have to certify that I left everything in good shape and that they do not require any witholding from my deposit (which is currently just a "virtual" one, covered by the Swisscaution insurance).


If I understand correctly, it should work like this: I have a form in my possession that I should send to Swisscaution to terminate the insurance. The form needs two signatures: mine, and Domicim's. In theory, I could ask Domicim (e.g. one of their agents) to sign it as soon as the move-out inspection reveals that everything is in order (or, if only some minor damage cost pops out and I don't want to be bothered, there is also a field in the form where you can specify the amount and then I have to reimburse it to Swisscaution directly). However, I am not sure I can force them to comply immediately (ideally I would like them to sign it before I sign the move-out inspection report, and before I hand them over the keys). Especially because the form is in Italian (but it shouldn't be difficult to ask for a French one to Swisscaution, which I will probably do anyway).


TL;DR: I should make sure to know my rights beforehand, and possibly get some French-speaking trusted person from Asloca with me during the move-out inspection, because these people are terrible a**holes.
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Old 09.07.2019, 12:42
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Re: Leaving flat in Lausanne with Domicim and Swisscaution... Get prepared!

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these people are terrible a**holes.

These people meaning Domicim.
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Old 09.07.2019, 13:11
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Re: Leaving flat in Lausanne with Domicim and Swisscaution... Get prepared!

Ask swisscaution if you can use the paper for the état des lieux, which should state if the flat was returned in acceptable conditions, or how much you would have to pay for extra cleaning and repair, etc. This paper you will have it on the day you hand over the flat.
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Old 09.07.2019, 16:52
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Re: Leaving flat in Lausanne with Domicim and Swisscaution... Get prepared!

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Yes, but in order to cancel it I also need the signature from my landlord (Domicim in this case). Because basically they have to certify that I left everything in good shape and that they do not require any witholding from my deposit (which is currently just a "virtual" one, covered by the Swisscaution insurance).
Haha, those bastards. They really say you owe the premium even though no new damage can be caused once you've moved out already. I wonder if that's lawful and enforceable.

Perhaps you can replace the insurance by an ordinary deposit before you give notice? Otherwise you're at the regie's mercy and will need to claim back the premium for 2020 (or even 2021) that hasn't been used up, if any.

Yet another reason to not use them.

Your form is a duplicate, you need the original (and signed) that's in the regie's possession.
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Old 09.07.2019, 17:37
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Re: Leaving flat in Lausanne with Domicim and Swisscaution... Get prepared!

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Haha, those bastards. They really say you owe the premium even though no new damage can be caused once you've moved out already. I wonder if that's lawful and enforceable.

Perhaps you can replace the insurance by an ordinary deposit before you give notice? Otherwise you're at the regie's mercy and will need to claim back the premium for 2020 (or even 2021) that hasn't been used up, if any.

Yet another reason to not use them.

Your form is a duplicate, you need the original (and signed) that's in the regie's possession.
Nothing to do with being bastards, it is just how these things are set-up. Without proper papers they don't know if there are any pending issues. OP just needs his papers from the landlord a.s.a.p. and use those to cancel the insurance.
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  #9  
Old 09.07.2019, 17:54
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Re: Leaving flat in Lausanne with Domicim and Swisscaution... Get prepared!

If you want to leave without hassle, maybe don't call the company a-holes on a publicly viewable forum. And use your legal insurance & ASLOCA if you think you need to. Better to have more people on your side at the handover. After the handover is done, it's too late.
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Old 11.07.2019, 15:13
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Re: Leaving flat in Lausanne with Domicim and Swisscaution... Get prepared!

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They really say you owe the premium even though no new damage can be caused once you've moved out already.

Yes, that's what I thought this is why I want to act now in order to avoid the scenario.


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Perhaps you can replace the insurance by an ordinary deposit before you give notice?


That's actually a great idea! I will contact Domicim immediately saying that I want to open a normal deposit account. They should be happy about it, no? I mean, for them an ordinary account should be better than Swisscaution.


The only thing I wonder is: how will they react if I also tell them that I want to leave the flat in November? Just to be safe I will try to do the deposit and Swisscaution cancellation *before* I give them notice of leaving the flat, but I don't know if there's gonna be enough time.


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Yet another reason to not use them.

You're absolutely right I did not want to use Swisscaution, but unfortunately there were some timing issues, and it seemed that doing the Swisscaution thing was faster than opening a deposit account at UBS. A matter of few days, but those made the difference.


Just for completeness, I checked, and it is not true that I did not pay the premium in 2018, I did but it was a reduced one. Actually it was shameful, it was almost 100% of the normal yearly premium, even if it was just for the month of December! Swisscaution = evil.



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Your form is a duplicate, you need the original (and signed) that's in the regie's possession.

Yeah, could be. Not that it makes any difference without both signatures


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If you want to leave without hassle, maybe don't call the company a-holes on a publicly viewable forum.

Oh, did I mistakenly write a-holes? So sorry, I meant honest gentelemen
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Old 13.07.2019, 19:16
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Re: Leaving flat in Lausanne with Domicim and Swisscaution... Get prepared!

An update: I was wrong on 2 points (actually one of them was not my fault but of my "unofficial translator"):


1) it is not the case of course that I can leave the flat at the end of any month except December. I can only leave at one date, that is the end of the rental contract, and provided I give 4 months notice, otherwise it gets automatically renewed. This means that there is only one date per year where I can leave the flat without paying extra fees and looking for a new tenant.


2) This one was my fault: I forgot that, despite having entered the flat on December 1st, Domicim was kind enough to offer me a 16-months rental contract, not a 12-month one as would be usual. This means that my official possible leaving date would be March 31st.


Given that I do not want to wait next year, at this point it looks unavoidable to me that I have to search for a new tenant myself. Implying 200 CHF for "administrative fees", 100 or so CHF for putting ads online etc, but still better than having to pay another year of various insurances and housing fees.





I have two questions:


1) is it even legal to have a contract of more than 12 months duration? I mean, technically speaking there is no possible leaving date for the whole 2019. Is it normal?


2) how does the search for a new tenant work timewise? In my contract it is stated that in this case I have to give notice to Domicim at least before the 15th of the month before the last month of my rental (so, if I want to leave on Nov 30th for example, I have to notify them before Oct 15th). This sounds reasonable to me, but my question is: shall I FIRST find a tenant and THEN send the notice, or can I start searching the tenant AFTER sending the notice? (also given the crazy housing situation in Lausanne)



Do I have obligations in terms of how many candidates I have to present to Domicim?


Thank you all guys, you're a real resource in a harsh environment for expats


P.S.: how can I "thank" people on this forum?
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  #12  
Old 26.02.2020, 16:03
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Re: Leaving flat in Lausanne with Domicim and Swisscaution... Get prepared!

It's well known that Domicim are the "terrorists" from the rental agencies in the swiss romande region.
They are not the only ones, reggie Braun is also pretty bad and more expensive than Domicim.

Domicim apartments are cheaper than the other apartments but then you get pretty much screwed when you try to leave. And if you don't agree to pay whatever they want, then you are double-screwed.

And yes, there is a Swiss law that should be respected but these people don't care. Even with the support of Asloca you are completely defenseless because they don't care and they do whatever they want.

The only way you can defend yourself is if you have a legal insurance to protect you and be willing to go to court if needed.

They are worst than wild animals. You can't negotiate with them, you can't bargain or try to bond in any form or shape like you would bond with another human being. They are scum so treat them as scum and maybe you will be lucky.
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