General tips when renting accommodation

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Dear all,

 

I am currently facing a challenging situation with my landlady. Back in March I sent her an email I would like to cancel my flat, however, she replied "Ich habe mich bei einem Rechtsanwalt erkundigt. Dein Kündigungsbrief muss spätestens am 3.3.17 bei mir ankommen. E- Mail wird legal nicht anerkannt."

 

From my perspective, that meant she is refusing my cancellation, therefore I decided not to move out. I failed to inform her about it.

 

Now she is saying that I have to move out without prior notice. I always paid my rent in time, even if as a landlady she was very late in repairing the house.

 

I am not comfortable with the eviction since I do not have a flat where to move, neither time to look for one due to business travelling.

 

Can you please advice what could I do?

 

Many thanks in advance!

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Well, your landladay is some piece of work.

 

Serving your notice as an email was indeed invalid. If you had written a letter, signed it and sent the scan to her via email and then the original by post that would have been valid.

Having said that, I am a landlord and I accept notices via email as I like treating my tenants amicably and make things easy for them, expecting the same from them (so far so good, although this has only been going on for about a year).

 

You don't have to move out. Don't worry.

 

My advice is to join the Mietverein and consult with them. You will definitely need their advice on an ongoing basis as you seem to have a less than ideal landlady. Talk to them about your landlady being late with repairs: you might be able to reduce your rent if that happens again.

 

Good luck.

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14 minutes ago, Driftdone said:

"Ich habe mich bei einem Rechtsanwalt erkundigt. Dein Kündigungsbrief muss spätestens am 3.3.17 bei mir ankommen. E- Mail wird legal nicht anerkannt."

 

I would suggest you send her another e-mail reminding her it was her own choice of words (quoting the above precisely at this juncture) that had made it clear to you that she had effectively unilaterally rejected your original e-mail request to cancel your contract at which point therefore you had taken the opportunity to reconsider your decision.

 

Since she had specified that a cancellation letter must reach her address by 3.3.17 it should have been self-evident by the fact that that deadline had passed and she had not received a written cancellation letter that your contract remained in force as per its existing status.

 

Give me 20 - 40 minutes and I'll have a go at translating the above in a formal German (faux) legalese style in my follow-up post, but you should then wait for any sign of improvments on my effort offered by one of TT's German members or one of the profi translators on the board.

 

2B

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Sehr geehrte Frau Landwoman

 

Betreff: Ihre letzte e-mail ? unser letzte Gespräche ? <-- Please use which ever one fits. I don't know whether she made this "Now she is saying that I have to move out without prior notice." statement in an e-mail or when talking  to you.

 

aufgrund Ihren eigene Wortwahl;

(zu Ihre erinnerung hiermit zitiert)

Zitat:

"Ich habe mich bei einem Rechtsanwalt erkundigt. Dein Kündigungsbrief muss spätestens am 3.3.17 bei mir ankommen. E- Mail wird legal nicht anerkannt."

 

womit es mir ziemlich klar geschildert war das Sie hatten nicht vor meine original E-Mail versuch unser Mietverhaltnis zu kundigen zu akkzeptiern. Deswegen hat ich eine Gelegenheit ubernach zu denken wie ich muss mit Ihre einseitige Entscheidung umgehen. Diese Gelegenheit habe ich genutzt meine eigene Entscheidung nach zu prüfen und bin nun zu der Meinung gekommen das es mir zurzeit keine Sinn macht unser Mietverhaltnis zu kundigen.

 

Da Sie mir gegenuber der Eindruck gegeben hatte das meine E-Mail nicht anerkannt war hatte ich auch daraus angenommen das falls eine Kündigungsbrief (in schriftlichen Form) nicht bei Ihnen angekommen hatte bis der spezifisch genannt Datum würde meine vorher geplannt Kündigung nichts zu Stand kommen.

 

Eigentlich von meine Standpunkt aus gesehen diese o.g. Zustand scheint selbstverstandlich zu sein.

 

Weiter soweit meine recherche nach alle treffenden Paragraphen der BGB geht bleibt unser Mietverhaltnis unverändert. Da ich Ihnen uberhaupt keine sogennant wichtigem Grund gegeben haben mir gegenuber eine Ausserordentliche fristlose Kündigen zu liefern ich hoffe Sie verstehen kann das ich würde Ihre Versuch nicht akkzeptieren.

 

 

mit freundlichem Grüsse

 

Driftdone

 

I think that should settle her beef. The tone is very stiff and formal (although I noticed after writing it that she had used a familar form in writing to you  - Dein instead of the formal Ihren/r) and its got enough hints that someone with at least a grasp of the relevant laws wrote it. She's no lawyer herself so she may, like most lay Germans would, be sufficiently impressed not to try bothering you any further. If she does have any doubts she'll have to go back and ask (and pay) that lawyer who will probably tell her not to try pulling such illegal stunts in future.

 

I'll edit this post with a back-translation within the next 2 hours (if there's time between watching the World Snooker Champs semi-final) so you can see exactly what you will have told her.

Short form :

Mrs Landwoman You screwed up so you can shove your cancellation without notice where the sun don't shine.

 

2B

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Back-Translation of above German^^

 

on the basis of your own choice of words ;

(to remind you quoted herewith)

Quote:

"Ich habe mich bei einem Rechtsanwalt erkundigt. Dein Kündigungsbrief muss spätestens am 3.3.17 bei mir ankommen. E- Mail wird legal nicht anerkannt."

 

which made it quite clear to me that you did not intend to accept my original e-mail attempt to cancel our rental relationship. Therefore I had an opportunity to think about how I have to deal with your unilateral decision. I have used this opportunity to examine my own decision and am now of the opinion that at the moment it makes no sense to cancel our rental relationship.

 

Since you had given me the impression that my e-mail was not recognized I had also assumed from it that if a notice letter (in written form) had not arrived at you by the specifically named date my previous planned termination would come to nothing.

 

Actually from my point of view this above mentioned condition seems to be self-evident.

 

As far as my research goes according to all pertinent paragraphs of the BGB (German Civil Code) our rental relationship remains unchanged. Since I have given you no so-called important reason for you to deliver an extraordinary termination without notice I hope you understand that I would not accept your attempt.

 

Kind regards

 

Driftdone

 

------------------------------------------

Albeit I'm self-taught and have never even been in a German class I wrote the original 'free out of the sleeve' as the saying goes but for back-translation I put the text through Google Translate. That's not an ideal tool but its results did show up places where I might have left a short word or two out of a couple of sentences. That can be seen in the slight awkwardness of the English version.

 

I'm pretty sure the overall meaning would be clear and that it doesn't look as if a half-trained monkey wrote it but I'd still apreciate it if any of our German expert writers were to take a moment to offer a litle editing help.

 

If no-one does so before ca 17:30 - 18:00 I'll send someone a PM and ask them to.

 

2B

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1 hour ago, 2B_orNot2B said:

it doesn't look as if a half-trained monkey wrote it

Eeehh... -_-

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An

Frau Maria Landwoman

Musterstr. 1

11111 Musterstadt

 

Mannheim, den 29.04.2017

 

Betreff: Ihre letzte E-mail / Unser letztes Gespräch

 

Sehr geehrte Frau Landwoman

 

aufgrund Ihrer eigenen Wortwahl (zu Ihrer Erinnerung hier nochmal zitiert): "Ich habe mich bei einem Rechtsanwalt erkundigt. Dein Kündigungsbrief muss spätestens am 3.3.17 bei mir ankommen. E- Mail wird legal nicht anerkannt."

ist eindeutig, daß Sie nicht bereit waren, meinen Versuch, das Mietverhältnis per E-Mail zu kündigen, zu akzeptieren (dies deckt sich mit §573c Absatz 1 Satz1 BGB).

 

Somit existiert keine wirksame Kündigung, und das Mietverhältnis wurde unverändert fortgesetzt.

Da ich Ihnen darüberhinaus keine Gründe für eine außerordentliche Kündigung aus wichtigem Grund im Sinne des §569 BGB geliefert habe, können Sie mir auch nicht nicht fristlos kündigen.

 

Ich rate Ihnen, Ihren Rechtsanwalt erneut zu konsultieren, er wird Ihnen die Rechtslage bestätigen.

 

Mit freundlichen Grüßen

Driftdone's signature

Driftdone's real name

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Dear all,

 

thank you very much for your supportive answers. I will reply to her using your information. I hope she will understand and not make any drama around it.  I will really hate having to move out on short notice.

 

 

another part of the email where she is addressing the moving out is: " Ich habe daraufhin auch des Öfteren probiert sie erfolglos zu kontaktieren, habe aber nie eine Rückmeldung auf meine E-Mails erhalten.  Aufgrund ihrer Kündigung habe ich mich bereits nach einem Nachmieter für die komplette Wohnung des EG umgeschaut.  Es sollen in naher Zukunft auch Besichtigungen dort stattfinden. "

Can she enter in my room to offer visits while I am not there? I would like to clarify that the apartment is considered a WG, but since she never found people, I am leaving alone.

 

Many thanks in advance for your advice!

 

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36 minutes ago, Driftdone said:

 

thank you very much for your supportive answers. I will reply to her using your information. I hope she will understand and not make any drama around it.  I will really hate having to move out on short notice.

 

 

 Don't worry about it. You don't have to move either on short nor long notice. There are only very specific circumstances under which your landlady can give you notice, e.g. repeatedly being in arrears with your rent, unauthorized subletting, negligence (such as if I pipe leaks, the flat is flooded and damage is caused because you don't tell your landlady about it) or if she needs the flat for a close family member (son, daughter...)

 

40 minutes ago, Driftdone said:


Can she enter in my room to offer visits while I am not there? I would like to clarify that the apartment is considered a WG, but since she never found people, I am leaving alone.

 

 

She needs to arrange any visits for repairs or to show the flat with you. She can't turn up unannounced. You can even demand that she not keep any keys to the flat.

 

It's pointless that she show the flat to prospective tenants of the whole flat because the flat is not free! Make sure she understands that. She can show the free rooms to interested parties though.

 

You could write to her something like this:

 

Sehr geehrte Frau [Landlady from Hell],

 

ich möchte Ihnen daran hinweisen, daß eine komplette Vermietung der von mir bewohnten Wohnung in diesem Zeitpunkt unmöglich ist. Es sollte Ihnen selbstverständlich sein, daß, da keine wirksame Kündigung des Wohnraums besteht unser Mietverhältnis läuft unbefristet weiter.

 

Besichtigungen der freien Zimmer in der Wohnung sind selbstverständlich möglich aber nur nach vorherigen Terminabsprache und mit einem Zeitraum zwischen Benachrichtigung und Besichtigung von mindestens 24 Stunden.

 

Mit freundlichen Grüßen

 

Driftdone

 

In English,

 

Dear Landlady from Hell,

 

It should be obvious to you, but I will explicitly spell it out in these lines, that you cannot let the whole flat to anyone because I live in it, and I plan to keep living in it. Let me remind you that no valid notice to vacate has been served and the lease continues indefinitely as a result. Your search from potential tenants of the whole property is therefore pointless.

 

Viewings of the available rooms in the flat are of course possible, but only by previous appointment as agreed with me and with a minimum notice of 24 hours.

 

Hugs and kisses, bitch!

 

Drifone

 

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53 minutes ago, Driftdone said:

another part of the email where she is addressing the moving out is: " Ich habe daraufhin auch des Öfteren probiert sie erfolglos zu kontaktieren, habe aber nie eine Rückmeldung auf meine E-Mails erhalten.  Aufgrund ihrer Kündigung habe ich mich bereits nach einem Nachmieter für die komplette Wohnung des EG umgeschaut.  Es sollen in naher Zukunft auch Besichtigungen dort stattfinden. "

 

hmmm :(

 

You really should have included that info in your first post. As it happens I doubt that that part of her message will have any material affect on the legal status of your contract, (unless you are still withholding any other material information), because the information we gave you in the previous posts was and is correct and, if you use the excellent text in @PandaMunich's post, she should (or her lawyer will advise her to) accept that the status quo prevails. 

 

(Rant)

Unfortunately, far too often posters seeking help or advice on TT don't disclose all the facts at the start of a discussion. They might write a very long post full of their emotion-laden opinions on the unfairness of life in Germany, Company V or Herr or Frau X but they seem to think it acceptable to feed the essential factual info like slices of salami to strangers they expect to provide all the answers they need.

(Rant over!)

 

Quote

Can she enter in my room to offer visits while I am not there? I would like to clarify that the apartment is considered a WG, but since she never found people, I am leaving alone.

 

Not without making a prior arrangement with you and your granting your permission.

 

If she hasn't been successful in finding anyone to share a WG in Mannheim I have some doubt she is well enough organized to have found prospective new tenants to take over the whole floor so soon. Since she could not have been sure when or if you would actually leave it would have been foolish of her to advertise your home already.

 

2B

 

Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer and none of the info posted above purports to be legal advice In Germany the law prohibits anyone other than a qualified Rechtsanwalt or Jurist from offering legal advice.

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@Driftdone

Do you actually pay the rent for the whole flat?

 

*************

 

Can no longer edit the letter, so please erase one "nicht" in "nicht nicht" in it.

There should only be one "nicht".

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I share 2B's worry that other nuggets of information remain undisclosed to us, but I don't see her landlady's fruitless attempts to contact the OP change anything. As per the information given, I would presume that the lease is valid and runs indefinitely.

 

Is there anything else you might want to tell us, @Driftdone?

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@Smaug, @PandaMunich, @2B_orNot2B,

 

sorry for the sliced information, I actually received it in 2 pieces, what I did wrong here was to first reply on my own and only afterwards ask for advice. Mea culpa.

 

I only pay 1 room from the flat, thus I do not mind at all if she founds flat mates, however, I was never proactive about it since I had no incentives. I was never late with the rent, only the deposit was paid in two round, but before agreed with her.

 

The whole story once again, after more than 1 year leaving in the room/flat, I got a good project that involves travelling abroad for more than 2 weeks at a time, on a monthly basis. Since it didn't make financial sense to keep the flat, I sent her an email asking if it's either possible to lower the rent or cancel the flat. She responded that lowering is not possible and she believes quitting is the best option. I wrote an email to say that I do not want to cancel it anymore, but I was not careful enough and I did not send it to her. :(

 

The other day, she sends me a very formal email (before this she was per du as @2B_orNot2B noticed, now she is per sie), where she is asking for a meeting to give her the keys. I replied that " Ich habe nicht gekündigt, deshalb ich dieses email nicht verstehen. Kannst du es mir bitte erklären?" She now sends an email saying that she is looking for more information.

 

I am sorry I didn't share the information as above. I was too stressed about it. I will be more careful in the future.

 

Thank you very much for your support, I hope I will be able to return the favor at some point.

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If you only pay rent for one room, i.e. you only have a rental contract for one room, then of course she has the right to show the other rooms in that flat to prospective tenants whenever she wants to.

 

P.S. Please learn the difference between:

living = a trăi

leaving = a pleca

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guten Tag lieber TT Benutzern, 

 

I rent a 1-bed apartment in Berlin on my own, and do a lot of traveling with work (2.5 weeks at the same time twice per year, plus other trips and my generous leave allocation from my employer). That means there is a *lot* of time where the flat is unoccupied, and of course my mind has wondered to the thought of subletting.

 

Now, I know that the local government is really not keen on the idea, and that my contract forbids it without prior permission, but I have heard a few cases of people doing short-term holiday lets for their flats above board, with permission from their landlords. A friend of a friend told me recently that she's been given permission to Airbnb her entire flat so long as she pays tax on the income. It's hard to tell exactly what the deal is — especially when my German isn't good enough to investigate auf Deutsch — so just wondering if anyone here can offer some advice? As it stands I'm leaving a lot of money off the table, and I'm also really not into the idea of my flat being unoccupied for long stretches of time. 

 

vielen dank in advance! 

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On 12/26/2017, 11:30:29, RedMidge said:

Stating the obvious here- but talk to your landlord. They may agree to subletting, bot not Airbnb. 

 

yeah, figured that'd be what i'll need to do — just asking here incase anyone's got experience otherwise. thanks! 

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My lease has the wording 

 

Zwischen 

Nachlass *******,

vertreten durch Rechtsanwalt ****** als Vermieter und My name then General Mietvertrag stuff..

 

What does this mean? The Rechtsanwalt inherited the apartment and rents it out? Or are they representing someone who doesn't want to give their name?

 

I thought the sweet old lady who showed me the apartment was the landlord but when I got the contract I saw that text.

 

Before the Toytown haters hate, I Will ask her, but I'm doing some research first of what implications this text have. Can the apartment be sold and I kicked out? Is the Rechtsanwalt fixing the broken heaters or whatever if it comes to that as a regular landlord?

 

Or am I just being paranoid and should just sign and return being happy I got an apartment? 

 

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5 minutes ago, Rymdmannen said:

Or am I just being paranoid and should just sign and return being happy I got an apartment? 

 

Yes, stop worrying.

 

The phrase just means that there's a group of heirs (of which the sweet old lady is probably one), which owns this apartment jointly.

This group is represented by that lawyer.

 

6 minutes ago, Rymdmannen said:

Can the apartment be sold and I kicked out?

 

It could be sold, but I wouldn't worry, if the group of heirs had wanted to sell, they would not have let the apartment, since empty apartments sell for more.

And even if it was sold, the new owner would enter into your old rental contract, and it would be difficult for him to get you out.

 

8 minutes ago, Rymdmannen said:

Is the Rechtsanwalt fixing the broken heaters or whatever if it comes to that as a regular landlord?

 

If something breaks, contact the lawyer, he's the interface to the owners.

 

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Thanks for the quick reply. But I'm not so sure. My German is not so great but when I visited the appartement the bathroom was under construction. She said it was old and needed complete reconstruction but will be finished when I move in. By the explanation it sounded like a nice bathroom. 

 

In the contract I read this: 

 

Die Vertragsparteien verzichten auf eine feste Verbindung des Übergabeprotokolls mit dem Mietvertrag und werden insofern die Einrede der Nichteinhaltung von Formvorschriften nicht geltend machen. Der Vermieter erteilt dem Mieter die Zustimmung zur Renovierung und Erneuerung des Badezimmers. Die Kosten hierfür trägt der Mieter.

 

Really? Does it say that I agree to pay? Everything, including tiles from walls floors sink toilet and bath tub??

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