Of course! No agency and certainly no property website can guarantee a 100% utilisation rate, although such a claim is often used in advertising. The party disadvantaged by an exclusive right is always the landlord. Due to our 25 years of experience, however, we are able to say that your property will generally be continuously rented via us – assuming that the underlying conditions are right: the property has contemporary furnishings, the rental price is in keeping with the location, size and features, and you are flexible and willing to adapt to the market situation.
Our clientele comes from Germany and abroad. Most of them are employees (businesspeople, engineers, executives, management consultants, IT specialists, project managers, trainees and interns) of local businesses and companies. For a number of years we have been successfully working with HR departments and relocation agencies that look for suitable accommodation for employees and managers all year round. We are in personal contact with the prospective tenants.
At HC24, you essentially choose the person to whom you would like to let your property. We actively support you so that you make the right decision. However, if you prefer that we take care of the letting process, we will be happy to do it on your behalf.
As soon as you inform us that you would like to let your property to a prospective tenant, we request all the necessary documents from the candidate and perform a credit check. If this is positive and you also trust your gut feeling when making the decision, although you still may not have a 100% guarantee for the future, you will nonetheless know that everything has been done beforehand to prevent any unpleasant surprises.
Our tenants often don’t yet know how long they will need the accommodation for at the time the rental contract is agreed. Accordingly, the contracts are often only agreed for a short period to begin with, but around half of them are then extended. The average letting times are between three and twelve months.
Once you have chosen a tenant, on request we draw up the rental contract that will be agreed between you and the tenant. A rental contract for a furnished property on a temporary basis differs from a standard rental contract. We individually prepare a draft of our verified sample rental contract ready for you to sign.
When calculating the rent, you should include all operating costs and ancillary expenses. This all –inclusive rental price makes it easier for prospective tenants to compare costs and simplifies financial planning. When concluding a management contract, we work with you to determine all the costs involved and then calculate the necessary total rent in accordance with the management option selected by you.
It is also usual to take a deposit when letting a furnished property. It serves as security for damages claims or subsequent payment of ancillary expenses, for example. It is important that the deposit is paid before or when the keys are handed over. The deposit amount is usually stated as x times the monthly rent and should be calculated on the basis of the value of the equipment and furniture in the property. We recommend charging a deposit equivalent to two months ’ rent. If the tenant has taken out enhanced liability insurance through us, the deposit can be reduced to one month’s rent.
You can bill the tenant for electricity costs in different ways. Notifying the energy supplier of a change of tenant is one fair and unproblematic way. Or you can continue to pay for the electricity yourself and then charge your tenant a monthly payment on account. When the tenant moves out, you determine the actual amount used by reading the meter and offset the difference against the deposit or reimburse any overpayments to the tenant. A third option involves charging a monthly flat rate for electricity, but this would mean that it would no longer be possible to demand any extra payment subsequently.
Most clients request and require an Internet connection. Many of them now use their smartphone as a hotspot or an iPad or tablet with a SIM card. However, a wired Internet connection is a distinct advantage in terms of improving the rentability of the property. As the landlord, if you provide an Internet connection, you are also liable for it during the rental period. We can provide you with an additional agreement on Internet use, in which the tenant undertakes to act correctly when using the Internet.
The occupant of the property is responsible for the licence fee and thus also for registering and deregistering with the fee collection service of ARD, ZDF and Deutschlandradio.
Since 1 May 2014, in accordance with the new Energy Saving Ordinance (Energieeinsparverordnung), the most important details of the energy performance certificate must be stated in all sales and letting adverts of residential properties – insofar as one is available. Landlords must have the den energy performance certificate with them during viewings and hand a copy to new tenants. Just one energy performance certificate is required for each residential building– even if you have several apartments within it. If you have one apartment in a residential complex, then simply request a copy of the certificate from the person responsible for managing the property. If you have offered a property to let through us and you wish to provide us with the details of the energy performance certificate, simply send or fax us a copy. You can find further information on the energy performance certificate here and here.
According to § 19 of the Federal Registration Act (Bundesmeldegesetz), which came into force on 1 November 2015, you have a duty as a landlord to cooperate. Your duty in this regard involves playing an active role in your tenant’s registration and confirming either in writing or electronically within two weeks that they have moved in. Your tenant must then register with the relevant registration authorities within two weeks. As the landlord, you also have the option of electronically submitting the declaration to the registration authorities. It goes without saying that we have the relevant pre-printed forms available for you. You can find detailed information on the Federal Registration Act in our news section.
At the end of the rental period, your property should once again be in a perfectly clean state so that the new tenant immediately feels comfortable. The final clean includes the following: cleaning the windows, mopping the floors, washing the curtains, towels and bed linen/liners, wiping out the kitchen cupboards and inspecting the cutlery, cleaning the furniture inside and out, washing (or possibly replacing) the shower curtain, and descaling the taps. You will receive a one-off end cleaning fee from the tenant for this purpose. This can be transferred with the final month’s rent or you can take the amount from the deposit after consulting with the tenant. On average, the final cleaning fee is between 50 Euro and 150 Euro, depending on the size of the property. Tenants often also require a regular cleaning service during the rental period. Your HC24 Office will be pleased to recommend reliable cleaning companies in your area.
The costs incurred by you as the landlord/owner for the agency services provided by HC24 are fully tax deductible as advertising costs in your tax return for rental income in accordance with § 21 EstG (German Income Tax Act). This lowers the surplus from rental income accordingly.