The surrender of an object for private or commercial use in return for payment is also referred to in Germany as renting or leasing. rent means. Both movable and immovable objects can be rented out. objects that are regularly rented out, such as cars, technical equipment or apartments. In addition, house walls can also be rented out as advertising space. However, when tenancy law is mentioned in general, it refers to the renting of living space. The rental agreement regulates how the rental is structured in concrete terms. The lease agreement must be in accordance with the valid tenancy law. Tenancy law itself is regulated in Germany in the German Civil Code in sections 535 to 580 a BGB. Different rights and obligations arise from tenancy law for both tenants and landlords, which we would first like to briefly discuss. In the following, we would like to present some areas and peculiarities that you may encounter in connection with leases. In many cases, you are well advised to seek help from a lawyer specializing in landlord and tenant law.
Rights and obligations of tenants and landlords
The tenancy law with or. the lease agreement regulates what the two parties are allowed to do under the lease agreement and what they are obligated to do. There is a legal framework for this, which may not be abandoned even by the lease agreement. In accordance with the tenancy law applicable in Germany, the landlord is primarily obliged to provide the rented property, i.e. in this case the apartment or the house, in a condition that is specified in the contract. In the case of an apartment, the building must therefore meet certain minimum requirements. In the case of a shed or garage, the requirements are of course less stringent. In principle, the landlord must also bear the costs associated with the rented property, such as repairs or taxes. In practice, however, individual costs are then allocated to the rent. Above all, however, the usability must be given. If this is not the case, for example due to building restrictions or lack of official permits, the landlord also loses the claim to the contractually agreed consideration, the rent payment.
However, if the apartment can be used normally as a rental object, the most important obligation on the part of the tenant is the payment of the contractually agreed rent. Both the amount of rent and the date on which payment must be made are specified in the rental agreement. In addition, the tenant is obligated under the lease agreement to return the rented property at the end of the lease term. Defects or damage to the rented property must be reported in any case and possibly also replaced. The last point in particular is often the cause of a dispute between tenant and landlord. In addition, tenancies regularly give rise to legal disputes. We would now like to go into the most important points, where the support of a lawyer may also be necessary.
Tenancies regularly offer potential for conflict
The conclusion and termination of rental agreements are particularly sensitive issues. With a conclusion rights of use as well as the rent amount are specified. Classical residential rental agreements thereby exclude commercial use of the building or. of the apartment. If the tenants nevertheless pursue a trade, this can have legal consequences. For a primarily commercial use, a commercial lease agreement should be concluded.
Often landlords require a security deposit in the form of a deposit. If the surrender of the deposit is refused after the termination, a dispute regularly arises. If tenants are terminated in an existing tenancy, then they often do not agree to it. And by no means is the notice always in accordance with the statutory provisions as well as the relevant case law. Specifically, the termination of an apartment by the landlord is subject to strict conditions, such as the existence of personal need. Whether the dismissal is legal, we can check for you as specialist lawyers for tenancy and residential property law.
In addition to the actual rent, which is due for the use of the apartment, the apportionment of operating costs is usually also agreed in the rental agreement. There are different billing models, which can have different effects on the costs depending on the actual consumption. In case of doubt, a lawyer for tenancy law can explain which model is best. The settlement of service charges should also not be accepted unchecked.
Rent increases belong to the life of a tenant unfortunately to it. However, such an increase is by no means always within the scope of the legal regulations. As specialist lawyers, we can explain to you whether you have to accept the rent increase, or whether it is worthwhile to take action against it. If you find defects in the apartment, then you usually have a right to a rent reduction. This can be the case, for example, if you discover mold, the heating is not working properly or construction measures considerably restrict the quality of living. Whether you are entitled to a reduction and how high this can be set, we can also show you exactly as lawyers for tenancy law.
If you rent an apartment for a long time, then it is not excluded that signs of wear and tear occur and damage can of course not be ruled out. Especially at the end of a tenancy, but also during it, there are always disputes about who has to pay for the removal of damage or necessary cosmetic repairs. It becomes annoying when landlords refer to a right of retention and, for example, withhold the deposit. Many tenants also feel the need to redesign the apartment according to their own ideas, for example, by installing shelves or making other structural changes. What is possible within the framework of tenancy law and where you should definitely inform your landlord, we can explain to you during a consultation.
We also offer legal support for lease-like contracts and leases. Contracts similar to leases exist, for example, when objects are leased. This can be the case, for example, with cars or technical equipment. Leases, on the other hand, are common in the case of the remunerated transfer of garden land or agricultural land. These contracts are usually concluded over many years and therefore you should definitely have them thoroughly checked by a lawyer beforehand. Of course, this also applies to rental agreements for other objects.
Conclusion: Prevent expensive mistakes with a specialist lawyer for tenancy law
As you can see, a number of disputes can arise in the context of rental matters. Most of them can be solved amicably, i.e. without a real legal dispute in court. In the case of an amicable settlement, a lawyer specializing in landlord and tenant law can be an important help in order not to make unnecessary mistakes that can cost a lot of money in the end. However, you will definitely need the support of a lawyer if the dispute between the tenant and the landlord ends up in a legal dispute. Do not hesitate to contact us.
At a glance: We can help you with these points in tenancy law:
- Conclusion and termination of rental agreements
- Operating costs (ancillary rental costs)
- Commercial leases
- Lease-like contracts and leases
- Rent increases
- Rent reductions
- Rental agreements for other objects
- Rights and obligations of tenants and landlords
- Cosmetic repairs and claims for damages
- Residential leases
- Rights of retention