sluzup

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About sluzup

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  • Location Niedersachsen
  • Nationality British/German
  • Gender Female
  1. We have a property in the UK and my preference has always been to keep good tenants rather than getting more money.  An empty property can lose you money pretty fast.  However as dstanners says, it depends on your financial situation.  Our mortgage is almost paid off, so my main concern is to have enough money for repairs and to cover us if we are without tenants for a while and have to pay, e.g., council tax.
  2. Tip of the day

    Thanks for this!!  Needed this a couple of weeks ago.  Luckily was able to warm the key in my hands and it then worked.  Batteries in both our keys were flat and have now been changed but will be grateful for this if there is a next time.  (I should have checked the manual - I check it quite often - but forgot to do it this time.)
  3. My husband and I have regularly used a Lohnsteuerverein.  They are not too expensive and we have always got a decent amount of money back, so was always worth it.  We used a regular tax advisor for the first couple of years but feel the Lohnsteuerverein has generally done a better job.
  4. Deutschland Ticket (588€)

    The point is to get more people off the roads.  Since lockdown, less people are using the trains and more are using their cars.  There are many benefits to getting people out of their cars and onto the trains, so yes, government may need to spend more on the trains but maybe less elsewhere.
  5. The return of the sleeper train in Europe

    Some of it slips out.  Tegernsee Hell is one of my husband's favourite beers and we can get it up here in Niedersachsen.
  6. The return of the sleeper train in Europe

    When I was 17 (a long time ago),  I did London to Frankfurt and back to visit a friend.  I met all sorts of people - felt slightly uncomfortable at times as it was all in compartments, and was at times alone with rather strange, but in the end, friendly (in a good way) men.  I didn't go overnight, but left London at approx 9am and arrived in Frankfurt at midnight.     Some years ago, my husband and I did a long trip by Amtrak.  We started and finished in Chicago but visited Denver, Flagstaff, Santa Fe, Kansas City and probably other places too.  We only had a sleeper compartment for one night, which was great but the seats are big and recline a long way back without disturbing your neighbours, so we did overnight trips in regular seats without a problem.  The trains also have dining cars and you get put with other people, so it was fun to meet all sorts of people.  They were mostly older people who were scared of flying, if I remember rightly.  One of my favourite memories is when we had the sleeper compartment, and the train stopped for a couple of hours in the middle of the desert.  There was loads of thunder and lightning but no rain. We saw so much more than we would have flying and we covered too far a distance for driving in a reasonable amount of time.   It was a fantastic trip and I would love to do it again.     
  7. The return of the sleeper train in Europe

    Munich to Rome sleeper options get booked up well in advance - check when they get released and make a note.  We once went from Munich to Venice NOT in a sleeper, longest night of my life.  We have done Munich to Rome in the 6 berth couchette and also in a proper sleeper compartment.  Both were great but for the 6 berth couchette it is best if you can book the whole couchette.  Possible if you are 4-6 people I think?  We did it once just the two of us, so shared with strangers, and once we were a group of 6 - was great fun.
  8. Buying a home in Germany 2022

    If the room is airtight and is not ventilated properly, then you can get mould/moisture behind furniture that is next to an outside wall.  However, if you want to be sure that that is what caused the issue, you should get a Gutachter.  When we were recently renovating our house, we got an Energieberater to come round and discussion insulation.  One thing he did was to measure the temperature of the walls (from the inside).  I think he said any wall that was at approx 16 C or below could have problems with moisture.  A normal surveyor might also be able to advise on such issues but an Energieberater might have special expertise?  Just a thought.
  9. With most insurance policies, there is an excess so you would be very unlikely to get 80 Euro back and might not get anything, but it could affect your premiums.  I would check your policy before contacting the insurance company.    I am very wary of insurance companies...my husband once hit a young cyclist who went off the pavement into the road.  The cyclist admitted fault.  My husband contacted his insurance company and  they said they would only do the repair at a particular garage.  The garage said it would cost 600 pounds to repair and the insurance company said they would get the boy's parents to pay.  My husband took it to his usual garage and they did the essential repairs for 50 pounds.  (We didn't worry about the dent.) So my husband didn't claim but he still lost his no claims bonus for 3 years as the insurance company said the boy's parents had 3 years in which to claim off him.
  10. Accountability in HR meetings

    I am not a lawyer but did used to be on the Betriebsrat at work.   It seems to be common practice, if you are off sick for more than 30 days in a year, to call you in for a discussion about it. In our company, the discussion might focus on what the company can do to help you.  I had a colleague suffering from stress and they offered a free counselling service but also offered to let them go part time.   In our company it is also automatic, so my husband had a knee operation that meant he had 30 days off in one go and he got called in.  It won't necessarily be them trying to get rid of you, but of course it might.  Some further info here.     https://www.igmetall.de/service/ratgeber/kuendigung-aufgrund-und-waehrend-krankheit#:~:text=Kann%20ich%20gek%C3%BCndigt%20werden%2C%20weil,drei%20Punkte%20%C3%BCberpr%C3%BCfen%20die%20Arbeitsgerichte.
  11. BREXIT positives and negatives

    Very strange to me.  I have dual German/British nationality and my husband has British/Dutch nationality. Not only did our local authority contact my husband several times but also our HR department came to talk to us.  Work requested proof from both of us (ID cards/passports).
  12. No social life after 9 years in Germany

      This is a phrase that I only learnt recently and need to try and remember. My hearing is a bit dodgy on one side and if I don't hear something properly, then often people assume I don't speak German and start speaking English
  13. No social life after 9 years in Germany

      When I asked a woman from customer service at  Vodafone Deutschland for her name she hung up on me.  She had probably said it at the beginning of the conversation but I find German names on the phone really difficult.  I must remember to get the correct name right at the start of the conversation.
  14. Our house, built in the 60, also has the thermostat outside.  The only thing that I can think of is that it ensures that the pipes get heated when there is a frost.  I find it strange as my heating comes on sometimes when I don't want it to and vice versa.
  15. No social life after 9 years in Germany

    How about parkrun?  You don't have to run - you could walk.  If you don't want to do that you could volunteer and they will love you for that!  Generally a mix of nationalities and a mix of personalities.   https://www.parkrun.com.de/rheinaue/