Questions from a prospective Munich Landlord (Owner of accommodation)
We have compiled an overview, listing the 21 most commonly asked questions by landlords to be:
- How does the process work?
- Please E-Mail me an overview about the furnished apartment you have on offer, I need:
Size, price, location, address, availability, description of furniture. If you have photos in low resolution you can attach, to give me a first overview of the property.
Upon receipt I will get in touch with you and will arrange for a mutually convenient photo session.
A proper viewing of a new address with photos and in depth talk takes about 30-45 minutes.
- Which kind of customers do you have?
- The majority comes from the IT, Computer industry. The car and aviation industry is also playing a major part. They recruit on a steady basis which impact is being felt on the Munich accommodation market. Management consultancies in Munich and lawyers are also very often on the lookout. They often expect a corporate rental which entails a regular cleaning service.
- Which nationalities do I have to expect?
- The Brits initially dominated the scene, now it is a more wide-spread, IT specialists from Eastern-Europe, Asian guests, American, Spanish, South-Americans.
- What do the guests expect?
- An authentic offer with no frills. When I say “frills” I mean an apartment which is not overloaded with delicate furniture, expensive chandeliers, white sofas where the tenant feels inhibited to touch anything. A place where one can feel comfortable, spread out a bit and has all the things one needs as:
Internet access, ideally own washing machine, all furnished, incl of bedding, kitchenware. A place which can easily be maintained
- How much deposit can I charge?
- Deposits up to 3 months net are possible, the tenants appreciate it to be between 1.000,- and 2.000,--, does depend on the individual apartment and situation though.
- How long do people rent?
- Standard answer is from 3 months to 3 years. There have been many cases though when tenants started with a very short time span of 2 or 3 months and after 1.5 years they are still happily residing in the same place so I always advise owners to be flexible on leases.
The more flexible landlords are, the better they rent their places. Owners who demand a one year lease right from the start do make life very difficult for themselves and the agent. Exceptions prove the rule though.
- Why do lease periods start with 3 months so often?
- The majority of tenants are working in IT projects which get renewed every 3 months in 90% of the cases. Obviously the tenant does not want to rent longer then the initial projects runs.
- Do you have a cleaning service at hand?
- Recently I have had a rather bad experience with one particular cleaning service which was unable to even remember the correct addresses. Not everybody knows what “Service Industry” means and is interested in a quick Euro rather than continuity of a good business rapport.
Luckily I have other companies at hand, however if you are able to ascertain the clean status of the apartment yourself, the better. The agent can only be a service provider but never ever take full responsibility for all matters to do with the apartment.
- Can you do handover for me?
- Yes, this is always possible.
- Will there be gaps between different rentals?
- Unrealistic expectations which are in contrary to the market situation can lead to some unrented period. Ask us about our judgement on pricing, furniture, etc. .. prime locations should not have a problem at all, however places in off-side locations might suffer. Experience has shown though that it is often an advantage to be able to check between the leases to make sure that things are still in order.
- Should I accept a booking for 1-2 months?
- November to January are historically difficult months. Not many new starters and in short: more leave then come to fill the gaps. An occasional short rental is never a wrong idea. It can also lead to an unexpected long lease: An Egyptian Engineer started off with 2 months and has just extended into her 2nd year of stay!
- Which kind of furniture is best?
- Obviously not all my offers should look the same. The Ikea style is predominant and never wrong though. Some clear, fresh, functional style.... We are happy to give detailed advice on this. XXXLutz, Segmüller, Kare, Höffner – the choice is yours. Designer style is sometimes asked for – you have to calculate if it pays off to go for the Eames Chair and look for Verner Panton furniture…
- What is the most important in a furnished place?
- An internet access has become an absolute must and owners who are still hesitant about it, will have a hard time to market their property. A foreigner finds it daunting to shop around the Deutsche Telekom, the Telefonica and the M-Net.
- I am thinking of buying a property, where do you suggest?
- City Centre is a must: Schwabing / Maxvorstadt/ Lehel / Haidhausen / Isartor.
- I am in need of a good handyman to fix a few things, do you have a recommendation?
- Yes, we have just identified a rising star! He is as good as gold and also attends to smaller matters which is a very rare thing amongst repair people. His attention to details is superb. He would even care to exchange the odd light bulb (if this is not the entire task obviously).
- Which internet provider do you suggest?
- M-Net, Alice, o2, Deutsche Telekom, they all are quite competitive.
- Does the flat need to come with a phone line?
- A nice to have but not a must. The owner has to check the monthly phone bills then.
- Does the flat need to come with bedding?
- Yes, always inclusive of bedding, towels, kitchenware.
- I’d like to sublet my place, is this possible?
- Yes, if you have the agreement of the owner.
- I can only offer a lease of 6 months, is this possible?
- Yes, however tenants always appreciate the possibility of a lease extension.
- Which rental contracts do you have?
- Contracts which have been checked on their legal status, 2-3 pages, which entail all necessary paragraphs, easy to understand and which help to close a rental efficiently and quickly.
- How quickly can you arrange for a rental contract?
- How quickly can you arrange for a rental contract?
- You keep an eye on the leases?
- Yes, I am your partner during the whole lease duration, pro-activeness and a good communication level are guaranteed.
- Can I and the tenant contact you during the tenancy?
- Absolutely, part of the job.
- What is the rent I can expect?
- For studios/ apartments: 790,- to 1.100,--
For 1 bedroom apartments: 1.050,-- to 1.790,--.
For 2 bedroom apartments: 1.700,- to 2.600,--.
For Houses: as of 2.500,--.
- Do I have to pay you a fee?
- Owners and landlords of furnished places do not need to pay a fee.
- I am not sure if I should rent furnished or unfurnished, what do you advise?
- A furnished rental is generally a good idea to keep access of one’s property.
The leases are generally very straightforward in terms of length. If you know that you need the property back after 1-2 years for family members or for the reason of a sell then let us know so that our contracts will be in accordance with your plans.
- Why do tenants always expect the “all inclusive rental prices”?
- Tenants expect simplicity in a furnished contract, no hidden agenda.
They want one price they can budget for and work with. Often the charges are covered by companies which also require fixed rental price.
- Your Relationship with landlords?
- An agency for furnished accommodation in Munich can only be as good as their contacts are.
The agent is dependent on the landlord and her/his credibility and vice versa. References of landlords who have been working together with me for years can be provided without any problems.
We are known to be very pro-active and provide a personal service. This means that we work together to identify the best accommodation solution and not the 2nd best.
- Relationship with tenants?
- Renting a furnished place depends on the correctness of the agent and the owner as well as on everybody’s professionalism. I believe in diligence and transparency. We pay respect to all parties and maintain polite and friendly manners. Keeping everybody updated is mandatory. In days of E-Mail an easy game.
- Which kind of relationship is there between agent-tenant-owner?
- It should be a happy triangle. I liaise between landlord - tenant whenever needed, arrange for viewing appointments, negotiate terms and conditions and finalise the rental contract. Some landlords also have direct contacts with their tenants since they speak good English. All parties should always be on the same information level which is easy in the days of E-mail.
- What is the disadvantage of renting out a furnished place?
- The landlord has to maintain a service mentality. He is more challenged in the way that he is faced with different mentalities and nationalities. An aspect which can be very interesting though, also since I cover the rental process mainly so that in an ideal case the landlord only has to sign the contract and hand over the keys. All prior work to that is done by Liz Frey.
- Lots of repairs and renovation necessary?
- Some landlords are weary about “frequent changes of tenants” since the flat would “suffer”.
I always proof that unfurnished places suffer a lot more, simply by moving around all that furniture. Furnished places remain as they are and lodgers are just arriving with their suitcase. Some tenants do have a problem though airing their places well and it is still an illness to have that window half-ajar in winter. Hence the rental contract is very clear on all this and its effects. Better safe than sorry..
- Do flats always have to be available on the 1st of each month?
- Actually it is quite often an advantage to have flats available during the month. Consultants for IT projects in Munich for example are often called at “last minute” and are grateful for housing then and there.