Broken window in a rented apartment

36 posts in this topic

Posted

I need help...

 

a few weeks ago, I was cleaning the house when I noticed that the living room window is cracked from the base of the frame and spreading upwards (was about 10cm in the beginning but it's now twice that size). I called the landlord today and his wife answered and told me he wasn't in so I explained a bit of what has happened (in my crap broken German - matches the window). She got right snotty with me and basically said that I had done it and it was my fault. So I said that it was nothing to do with anything I have done and she said that she would get her husband to call back. This is a landlord who I haven't seen or had contact with since I moved in and didn't even want to know when I said that I had opened a Sparkonto for the Kaution (I still have that and the paperwork and he doesn't want to know).

 

Anyway, he came to have a look tonight and said he has nothing to do with it. Reckons he will get in touch with someone about a new window and tell me the cost and it's up to me.

 

It says this in my contract:

 

Der Mieter haftet für alle Schäden, die dem Vermieter oder Dritten aus Maßnahmen gem.Ziffer 1. entstehen, ohne dass es des Nachweises des Verschuldens bedarf

 

but there is no real Kleinreparaturklausel in my contract.

 

Looks like I'm down the river without a paddle (no insurance - I know, don't tell me off) and it's a friggin' big window.

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Posted

Can you prove it was there when you moved in? Usually you gotta do an inspection with the LL/HM and both sign it before you move in,

and again when you leave. Otherwise, yup, your boned... I'd start looking for insurance now, it's only like 200 Eur a year and an xtra 50

or so a year for special Glass insurance. At least with the company I went thru.

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Posted

The cost is not up to you if you or your guest didn't cause it. Tell the fucker to prove that you or one of your guests caused it and go talk to the mieter verein tomorrow.

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Posted

I have heard of glas doing this in the extreme heat.. this is usually cause by the Pane being too tight in the frame.. this is difficult to apportion blame though...

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Posted

An expert could determine in a heartbeat how the glass broke. That is until the whole thing falls out of the frame due to shattering regardless of the cause of the initial break. It is nearly, if not completely, impossible for someone to break a mounted glass plate from the side unless there was already a weakness there.

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Posted

If it is not in the original contract, i.e. the apartment inventory and notes regarding the inventory, then you pay for any repair. That is why you go around the apartment with the landlord confirming all imperfections and anything that may not be in the contract. That is just the way it is.

 

You will have a hard time proving it was there at the beginning if it is not documented from the beginning. You should have done a light repair and not said anything

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Posted

Sorry but i agree, that's why you look round the place before you move in. harsh lesson but true, good luck in trying to prove it wasn't your fault :unsure:

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Posted

As I was gently closing my window lastnight with one hand turning the handle and the other one lightly on the pane (there is not other way to close my window) the whole thing shattered and my hand went through. The windows in my apartment are unbelieveably old and flimsy. Putting my hand against the other panes, it is clear that they could easily fall out too. This incident was really not my fault and I have a witness to prove that I did not so much as bang the window.

 

So my question is, who should pay for this?

 

Its a bit complicated. My hauptmieter has been renting the 3 bedroom apartment for 6 years by himself and then sublets it. He has gone travelling for a year and has sublet the apartment to me and 2 others. The landlady does not know this. In the meantime, if anything happens to our apartment we have to tell the neighbour (the hauptmieters best friend) and he deals with it. We are not allowed to contact the landlady (nor do I have her contact details) or the hausmeister as we are essentially living there illegally. So the neighbour contacted the hausmeister and he is replacing the window tomorrow but said he would not pay. The neighbour told me and the hauptmeister that one of us will have to pay. But shouldnt the landlady have to pay? It should be her responsibility to replace the ancient windows.

 

If anyone could shed any light on the issue, I would greatly appreciate it. Thanks.

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Posted

It depends on what it states in your (in this case, the original tenant's) lease. Cosmetic repairs up to a certain amount per repair and/or per year often have to be paid by the tenant.

 

Regardless of this, in your particular case, your best bet might just be to pay up and shut up, since the alternative could mean getting evicted. Is it really worth that risk for a few euros?

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Posted

Well if that's the case then surely the original tenant should have to pay..?

 

Sorry Jeff, I'm not prepared to give up so easily. I do not believe in paying such fees just because it is easier.

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Posted

How big is that damaged window? You are talking about a good 50 to maybe 100 E to have it repaired - not sure that's worth too much hassle, especially in your special case... I'd be happy the damage didn't occur when outside temperatures hit the minus 10 range.

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Posted

If you have no legal contract with the Hauptmeiter then yes, you can probably fuck him over and stick him with the bill - although if you have no legal contract with him then maybe he can return the favor.

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Posted

 

So my question is, who should pay for this?

 

Don't pay. If it falls under Kleinreparatur your irresponsible and conniving Hauptmieter has to pay for it. If it falls under normal wear and tear and general habitability of the apartment the landlord has to pay for it.

 

My advice: Find a legal living situation pdq.

 

Related topic: Fixing or replacing a defective door

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Posted

So the Hauptmieter agreed to pay for it.

 

Anyone know of a good (cheap) window-repair guy? The hausmeister refused to do it in the end.

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Posted

If the glass is in a metal frame that sometimes happens if it gets very cold. I have a 7cm crack in my shop door (metal frame), but as it doesn't bother me or the landlord I did nothing about it.

If your landlord said he had nothing to do with it I'd just wait and see what he comes up with. Maybe he is just the owner of the apartment but some things are payed by the "Gebäudeversicherung", wich is payed by the "Eigentümerversammlung" or something similar.

If it is just a small crack starting at the frame, no wind blowin in, I'd just wait till you hear from your landlord.

 

EDit: Just read the date of the starting post. I think that's been dealt with... ;).

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Posted

While going through this post,I can relate to my dilemma. I stay in a rented accommodation which has a Double glazed window (approx 7 feet x 5feet)towards balcony. When I returned from work the other day, I found a big crack in the middle of the glass window. Only inner side of the double glazed glass was cracked.

Research on internet suggest that it had 'imploded' due to weather change. I have informed my landlord of the situation and he will be visiting to assess. Will I be held liable for this damage? In my opinion, No but I wanted to have second opinion and prepare myself before landlords visit. Any inputs, suggestions will be appreciated.

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Posted

I doubt you'll be held responsible. If they come to assess it they can usually tell what caused something like that. It should be covered under your landlord's insurance, provided he has a Glasversicherung.

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Posted

I can not tell you how likely it is that you would be held liable for a cracked window but if you don't have one already, for the future, get yourself a liability (haftpflicht) insurance. Almost every German has it and it pays for things you accidentally damage. That way, you would not really have to worry about if you were blamed for damages like this or not.

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Posted

I thought hauptflich did not cover property you rent.

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Posted

Have a look at your rental agreement: does it mention who´s responsible for window damage? It MIGHT be the landlord. Leon is right: get Haftpflicht insurance for next time.

 

Serenajean: yes, liability insurance ( if it´s good ) takes care of damage to a landlord´s fixtures and fittings.

 

On a personal note: good to see you back on Toytown, Serena!

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