STL7997 started this discussion 9 years, 7 months ago:

LANDLORD: Stefan

My landlord is Stefan and I'm going to leave his last name out until I PCS out of here. I'll put it in closer to the time I leave. This may be lengthy, so bear with me.

We got here at the end of September so pretty much everything was taken. Getting a house was damn near impossible, well at least a decent place. There were a few places open but they were run down. All the decent places were taken the minute they were posted on the web.

We saw an ad for the place we live at now and were the first ones to look at it. We loved it but they were asking 2580 Euro and our cap was 2460. We asked them to lower the price, they hesitated - spoke in German and then countered with 2500. We took it. Well, we begged for it. They wanted us to think about it but we knew what that meant, next person that looked at and agreed to 2580 would get it. So we inked a deal right there.

Stipulations were this, we would have to manage the shrubbery all around the house (large lot) twice a year, pay 160 euro/year for chimney sweep, of course oil/water/trash/electric was ours to pay for as well. The house came with a sauna bath tub but the pumps were broken so it didn't work and they weren't planning on fixing it. Mind you the previous tenant broke it and it should have come out of their deposit.

Getting to the point.... After 6 months of living here we realized we were getting ripped off. All of our friends had equally comparable places but were paying less and even had some stuff included like chimney sweep. So we had a sit down with our landlord to re-negotiate the contract. We asked to have included in the rent the shrubbery done, chimney sweep, rent knocked down to 2460 and the tub fixed.

We realized not all requests would be met but any would be better. Our landlord took a week to talk it over with his wife and came back with 0 for an offer. He said they would not meet any of our requests because we signed a contract 6 months earlier.

Long story short, we understand we signed a contract but after seeing what others were paying we felt like we were getting the raw end of the deal. We are the 2nd Americans they have rented to and the first couple were two Majors so they assume we all are loaded.

All in all, our landlords are ok folks but all it comes down to with them is money. They have a side business making honey and we asked for some, they charged us. I mean we are paying these guys 2500 Euro ($3516) a month and they can't even throw in a free jar of honey?

We get jealous of our friends that have their landlords over for beer and shoot the sh*t. Not the case with ours.

/rant



9 years, 7 months ago

What does your contract say? Our contract says we have to give our landlord 30 (maybe 45) days notice to end the contract. Of course, this means the landlord can do the same if he wants us to leave.

Our rent for a 240sqm house is €1600 including garbage, water, chimney sweep, and a garage. Our landlord comes every few weeks during season and works in the garden with his wife.

I know you are PCSing soon as you said, but just for the heck of it, look at your contract to see what the "out" clause is.

9 years, 7 months ago

I'm sorry you are having a rough time with your landlord. Definatly look and see what the contract says as far as getting out if you want.

We haven't moved into our house yet, and I'm not thrilled with our landlord, as the other folks are moving out on the 4th and he asked if we wanted to move in on the 5th...we are moving in on the 6th, but we are like "woah, what if you want to fix something".....our kitchen is a bit run down, well very ugly, but the rest of the house seems nice.....I have heard that if you want something done by your landlord (that they should be doing, such as fixing broken things), you need to give them the list in writting, and state in the notice that you are giving them 2 business weeks (about 21 days) to fix it, if it's not fixed then you will go to the housing dept.....then make sure you follow through. He should AT LEAST fix the tub.

We don't get nearly as much as you for OHA, but not having the tub fixed would irritate me.

I have also heard stories that landlords will find that something was broken by a previous (usually american family) tenant, and charge them from their security deposit, but then not have any intentions of fixing it....then if you don't let them know about the issue upon move in, they will charge you for the damage because you and he cannot prove that you didn't damage it, and then they still have no intentions of fixing it...so they are just getting more and more money and still not fixing anything. I hear you have to be very firm with the landlords here.

I don't think we'll have our landlord over to shoot anything, other than getting something fixed lol....it would be nice, but I think I would almost rather keep it business like to avoid any "friend" issues.

Good luck

9 years, 7 months ago

When we moved into this house, while it was still empty I walked into every room and took digital pictures of every single wall, floor, and ceiling. I took photos of appliances, cabinetry, etc. I have photos of everything possible.

If there is ever a problem, I can show the landlord what the house looked like upon our moving in. I also filed these photos with the housing office.

9 years, 7 months ago

Quote by JOFTAA:
What does your contract say? Our contract says we have to give our landlord 30 (maybe 45) days notice to end the contract. Of course, this means the landlord can do the same if he wants us to leave.

Our rent for a 240sqm house is €1600 including garbage, water, chimney sweep, and a garage. Our landlord comes every few weeks during season and works in the garden with his wife.

I know you are PCSing soon as you said, but just for the heck of it, look at your contract to see what the "out" clause is.


We don't PCS till 2012 so we are here for awhile. The contract is like everyone else's, 30 day notice. My wife is TDY to the states now and upon her return we are going to start looking at other places. That's the reason for the thread about moving companies I made awhile back.

If we find a place and a moving company won't charge me an insane amount we are going to go back to our landlord and give him the option. He can either meet our requests or we will move out, in which he will lose a steady months rent. What we are asking for (knock the rent down 40 euro/month, chimney sweep, fix the tub and maintain the shrubs) comes out to be cheaper than one months rent.


Quote by Lindsey:
I have also heard stories that landlords will find that something was broken by a previous (usually american family) tenant, and charge them from their security deposit, but then not have any intentions of fixing it....then if you don't let them know about the issue upon move in, they will charge you for the damage because you and he cannot prove that you didn't damage it, and then they still have no intentions of fixing it...so they are just getting more and more money and still not fixing anything. I hear you have to be very firm with the landlords here.


We put the tub on the contract as broken so this wouldn't happen to us when moving out, along with other smaller things we noticed in the house.

9 years, 7 months ago

well hopefully you can find something you like.....with your oha allotment, you should be able to find something. We saw a lot of places in the 2000 euro range that we would have loved, and seemed to stay on the list a little longer than the others because not a lot of people here can afford that much. (mil to mil is common but not THAT common)

good luck!!

9 years, 7 months ago

Make sure you let housing know your issues.

9 years, 7 months ago

Quote by STL7997:
Stipulations were this, we would have to manage the shrubbery all around the house (large lot) twice a year, pay 160 euro/year for chimney sweep, of course oil/water/trash/electric was ours to pay for as well. The house came with a sauna bath tub but the pumps were broken so it didn't work and they weren't planning on fixing it. Mind you the previous tenant broke it and it should have come out of their deposit.


Did they really put that they would not fix the sauna bath on the Housing Rental Agreement?

Quote by JOFTAA:
What does your contract say? Our contract says we have to give our landlord 30 (maybe 45) days notice to end the contract. Of course, this means the landlord can do the same if he wants us to leave.


The USAFE Housing Referral Office Rental agreement does allow for the member to move out with 30 days notice. The landlord right to terminate a rental agreement though is not address and actually set in German law. With a few exceptions, a landlord can only terminate a lease for cause and the notice period varies between 3 to 12 months depending on the length of the tenants occupancy.

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