If you receive a rental contract, you should read it carefully before signing. If there are things you don’t understand, ask for help!
Once you have signed a contract, you have to stick to it.
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Important issues in the rental contract
If you receive a rental contract, you should read it carefully before signing it. If there is something you don’t understand, seek help!
There are many important issues in a rental contract:
- Names of all renting parties
If two persons are mentioned as rental parties, both of them need to sign the cancellation of the contract later, when moving out.
- Address of the apartment, location and size
- Beginning and end of the rent
A rental contract with a fixed end date is only possible for a clearly mentioned reason. This is only possible if the landlord claims his right to personal or business usage, or for planned repairs and renovations.
If a cancellation dispense has been agreed upon, both parties can cancel the contract only after a fixed period of time.
- Renting and housing costs
In the rental contract, either a fixed rent or an index rent (Indexmiete) or staggered rent (Staffelmiete) can be mentioned. In the last two cases the renting costs will rise periodically according to the agreement.
- Deposit (Kaution)
As a safety measure for the landlord, the highest possible deposit is the equivalent of three monthly rents.
It can be prohibited that the flat is being subleased to another person.
- Keeping of animals
If the keeping of animals is prohibited in the contract, the landlord is allowed to cancel the contract as soon as domestic animals, such as cats or dogs, are kept in the apartment.
- Cosmetic repairs (Schönheitsreparaturen)
Cosmetic repairs (like painting the walls) only need to be carried out by the tenant if the apartment was fully renovated when moving in. Certain agreements may be legally wrong and invalid. Smaller repairs (up until 100 €) during the renting period have to be carried out by the renting party.
- House regulations and other agreements
See under “Neighborship & Cohabitation”
The official cancellation deadline, according to the law, is three months before the end of the rental period, at the end of a month. The landlord must receive the cancellation on the third working day. The landlord is not obliged to accept any new tenants offered by the renting party and can insist on the full three months for the cancellation.