Everything You Need to Know about Taking Over Your Swiss Rental Property
Book Free Guidance Call

Everything You Need to Know about Taking Over Your Swiss Rental Property

Guide by

Taking over a Swiss rental property -- how to do it right

When you take over your Swiss rental property, you don't want to be held accountable for existing defects.  So be aware of your rights and responsibilities when taking over rental accommodation. Learn everything about moving into a new apartment to ensure a seamless transition and no issues in the long run. 

If you need support from our relocation experts, we are one free Guidance Call away. Ask us anything.

Book Free Guidance Call

Taking Over a Rental Property

You've found the home of your dreams in Switzerland? Congratulations! In the Swiss rental market, it's not an easy feat.

You're probably already thinking about decor options and adding a few touches to make the new apartment or house feel like YOUR home. You'll get to that soon.

But first, let's get the less pleasant but very important things out of the way. Take a few moments to enjoy your victory and then let's make sure that you'll be able to enjoy it stress-free for as long as you want.

Taking over a property involves certain responsibilities, including ensuring that you are not held responsible for any prior defects. No one wants to pay for repairs that weren't their own fault, right?

Right! While property maintenance in Switzerland is heavily regulated, some things can slip through the cracks, irrespective of the real estate agent's or the landlord's good intentions. This is why it's important to do your own diligence before signing the contract and moving in.

Compulsory Handover Requirements 

The home you'll rent most likely had a previous tenant, who was responsible for leaving everything in perfect condition. To ensure that this happened, an inspection report is created upon the previous tenant's departure.

The entrance inspection report is part of the contract and documents the condition of the property at handover. The inspection and the property inspection report will be provided by the landlord or the real estate agent acting on their behalf. This report will contain all the defects on your property, no matter how small. It needs to be well documented, which is why, taking photos and attaching them to the report is always a good idea. 

Remember, any defect that's not included in the report will be your responsibility!

Before the handover, you will have to prepare and have at hand the following:

  • Signed lease contract

  • First rental payment

  • Rental security deposit (set up by your or the agent's bank) or proof of a rental guarantee

  • Third-party liability insurance

How to Prepare for Taking Over a Property

Ready to move? We know you have a lot of things on your mind, but most of them can be taken care of at a later date. Some of them, on the other hand, are best tackled as soon as possible. Here's what you should bring when taking over a Swiss property:

  •  Provisional name stickers for the letterbox and doorbell 

  • A camera, so you can take detailed pictures and then send them to your agency/ landlord

  • Documentation including contract, proof of rent payment, security deposit and household insurance

During the final property inspection, the real estate agent or the landlord will probably accompany you. While you have them there, it's much easier to sort out any issues. So make sure that you:

  • Check that defects are clearly listed on the inspection report. If not, ask for additional details to be included.

  • Take detailed pictures of damages, marks and scratches. Send the pictures to your agency/ landlord, but make sure to save them as well.

  • Identify all keys and check that they fit

  • Check basement storage

  • View reserved parking place

  • Open and close blinds

  • Switch on electrical appliances

  • Check light fixtures

  • Check dishwasher filters

  • Look for bathroom ventilation

  • Check the fridge and freezer

  • Look for holes and other damage on floors, doors and door frames, window frames and wall tiles. Pay extra attention to the entry points and the corners that are most susceptible to small accidents.

  • Check the condition of garden, balconies and terraces, and other outdoor areas that are your responsibility

  • Check the general condition of the property for cleanliness etc.

The Importance of the Property Inspection Report

Rental properties will not always be repainted or renovated between tenants. You may be renting a property with a certain amount of wear and tear. But this doesn't mean that you should be responsible for the prior defects.

You will only be liable for damages caused by you and not general wear and tear. Make sure that this is clearly specified in your lease agreement and that the inspection report covers all the pre-existing defects.

After the apartment handover: If there are defects that were overlooked or omitted on the day of  handover, you have up to ten days to send the amended inspection report in writing, including photographs when possible, to the agent.

Ten days give you plenty of time to get settled in and to use most of the systems and facilities of the home. We highly recommend that you try as many as possible. 

Need help navigating all the stages of a Swiss rental property handover? Our relocation experts can assist you throughout the process, from finding the ideal home to ensuring that your handover goes smoothly. Ask us anything about renting in Switzerland. 


Book Free Guidance Call


Would you like to find out more about the complex Swiss housing market? What happens after you find a home in Switzerland? How to maintain your Swiss property and why this is so important? Have a look at Everything you need to know about the Swiss housing market