Handover of the apartment before moving in

WohnungsansichtCongratulations – you were successful and have finally found a nice apartment in Munich

The rental price and the start of the rental period are right, the area is nice, well connected to public transportation, but still quiet. The move-in date has been set, the right moving company has been found, the move is planned. Now the handover of the apartment must happen, in the course of which you will also receive the keys to your new home.

Before the handover, the deposit (maximum 3 net rents) must be paid to the apartment owner. According to § 551 Par. 2 BGB, this can be paid in three installments upon consultation with the landlord. This means that the first partial payment of the deposit is made with the first rent payment, the second and third payment is due with the second and third rent. Moving always entails a lot of costs and the partial payment of the rent deposit allows a welcome financial relief.

 

WohnungsübergabeIn the past, until 2015, the broker’s commission, 2 months rent + VAT, made up a significant part of these costs. Around 90% of the apartments available in Munich were offered by brokers. Since June 2015 the “orderer principle” has been in place. If the apartment owner appoints a broker to re-let his apartment, he has to pay the broker fees. There are no brokerage costs for apartment seekers.

When the apartment is handed over, not only are the keys handed out, but the entire apartment is being inspected for damages and defects, and the meters are read.
The handover of a new apartment with first occupancy is significantly less time-consuming, as everything is new, unused, and therefore in perfect condition.

In order to avoid discussions or disputes later, when moving out, it is important to do a thorough handover and draw up a protocol.

 

Below is a checklist for the handover:

  • Make an appointment for the handover in daylight
  • Create a handover protocol
  • Make notes of all grievances, damages in the apartment, the fitted kitchen, on the balcony, terrace, in the garden, cellar, garage
  • Make notes of damage to the flooring, tiles, walls, doors, door frames, heaters
  • Take photos of all defects and damage
  • Make a note of whether the apartment is freshly painted or not
  • Make notes of the meter readings of the water, heating and electricity meters, or take a photo of the meter readings and also write them down in the protocol
  • Make a note of the number and type of keys (house and apartment door, cellar, mailbox, garage, garage transmitter)
  • If there’s a fitted kitchen, check the kitchen appliances and cupboards for damage and their function
  • Also check proper function of everything in the bathroom and guest toilet
  • Check the function of the windows and shutters
  • Check the function of the door opener and the intercom system
  • Check the basement room
  • If there is a laundry room with shared used washing machines and dryers in the basement, have them shown to you and let them explain you the procedure for using the devices
  • Let them show you the location of the bike room, garbage room, garage space, etc.
  • Clarify who in the house is responsible for the production and affixing of the name badges on the mailbox and bell, what costs arise, and who pays for it
  • Clarify who your contact person is in the event of damage during the rental period and get the relevant contact addresses.
  • In a multi-party house, the contact address of the caretaker and property manager are generally announced on a notice in the entrance area of ​​the house.
  • If there are existing defects that will be repaired by the owner, note these down and note the date by which the defects should be fixed.
  • Add the date and the signatures of the owner / representative, as well as the tenant’s signature to the protocol
  • For the registration or re-registration of your place of residence, you need the “Wohnungsgeberbestätigung” (Housing Provider Confirmation) from the owner / representative. Have this given to you upon the apartment handover.
  • If you notice any damage or defects in the apartment in the first 2 weeks, document this in writing and with a picture, and forward it to the landlord.

Enjoy your new home.

Apartment search in Munich and the surrounding area

MünchenIn major German cities there are more apartment seekers than suitable, affordable living space. Munich alone is lacking around 70,000 apartments.

The apartment hunt is becoming a race with a multitude of competitors. The competition for affordable apartments in good locations, with good facilities is fierce.

Apartment owners can select from a large number of applicants and are accordingly picky. In 90% of apartments dogs aren’t allowed and cats are frowned upon too.

These days you must expect a basic rent price of around 21 Euro per square meter for a 60 square meter apartment. That’s exclusive of heating and other additional costs. In the popular areas of the city center the price can be significantly higher, depending on location and the apartment’s facilities.

Considering these prices, it’s no wonder that creditworthiness is first priority for apartment owners when renting out their apartments.

The majority of apartment owners only consider prospective tenants whose net income is minimum three times the full rent. Therefor applicants with good income have better chances.
If the apartment can be rented out fast, with little effort, and no renovation needed, that’s additional important criteria why an owner may decide for a specific applicant.
In a multi-party house, owners furthermore consider what different types of people live there. How do the applicants fit into the house community? In a house with only elderly tenants a student will have difficulty getting an apartment.

How do I find a suitable apartment?

In the internet age https://www.immobilienscout24.de and https://www.immowelt.de/ surely offer the best possibilities. On these pages you can search for apartments, and sort by specific criteria like region, size, price, facilities and more.
It also pays off to search at https://www.ebay-kleinanzeigen.de.

Speed is important. For every new apartment offer there are on average about 90 requests. Once an advertisement was placed it’s important to get in contact with the housing provider as fast as possible to have any chance at all to get an appointment for an apartment viewing. If there’s a phone number, you should also try to give them a call.
You can also activate the message service of these sites to be automatically and regularly get informed about new offerings. You can set the interval of these messages manually.
When contacting the apartment owner, it’s very important to give information about yourself and the reason why you are looking for an apartment.
It’s also recommendable to have an application portfolio. It can be of great value for the apartment hunt and should offer the apartment owner relevant information like a cover letter with details about yourself, an up-to-date Schufa statement, as well as information about your income.

Munich and its surrounding area are an expensive location and dream apartments have their price. If you don’t have a high income you should be aware of your apartment hunt priorities and make necessary compromises.
Does it really have to be the hippest neighborhood or are the outskirts fine too? Aren’t maybe 60 sqm enough instead of 80 sqm? Is the city center as a location so important to me that I’m willing to pay 6€/sqm more for it? Is a balcony really necessary? Do I really need a lift for an apartment on the 4th floor? Why not rent an apartment without a fitted kitchen, built in a kitchen of my taste, and sell it later to the next tenants? I found a suitable apartment but in order to be awarded the contract I have to rent it earlier than desired, and therefor pay two rents in one month. Should I really do that? Yes, that can be a necessary compromise too.
Yes, unfortunately Munich has become a very expensive place to live, the housing market is tense. Affordable apartments are rare, the apartment hunt is a contest. Difficult, time-consuming, and grueling.

Yes, Munich is a wonderful city with cultural diversity, high recreational value, and gorgeous surrounding areas. The Alps are just around the corner, Bella Italia is within reach to spend the weekends, and yes, you can find a nice, affordable apartment in Munich. What you need for that? A steady income, realistic expectations, time, patience, and the famous little bit of luck.

Or the support of relocation specialists
They know the city, the housing market, tips, and tricks, and they have the best connections to property managers, owners, and real estate agents.
That spares time, hassle, and nerves.