Renting out a house: Guide and information for Switzerland

Everything you need to know for a successful house rental

The most important aspects when renting out your home

Renting out a house in Switzerland can be a worthwhile investment, but requires a certain amount of preparation and knowledge of the legal requirements. In this guide you will find comprehensive information and useful tips on renting out your home in Switzerland.

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1. how do you determine a reasonable price for the house rental?

When renting out your home, setting the right rental price is crucial. There are several factors you should consider in order to make your property attractive to potential tenants and at the same time achieve a reasonable return on investment.

Analysis of the rental market:

Take the time to analyze the current rental market. Find out whether there is an oversupply or undersupply of houses for rent and what rental prices are usual in your region. Compare similar homes in the area to get an overview of the market and competitive rental price.

Through a thorough market analysis, a realistic valuation of your home and a careful calculation of the costs, you can determine the optimum rental price for your home. This enables you to rent successfully and enjoy long-term financial benefits.

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Valuation of your house:

Evaluate your home objectively and realistically. Consider the size, location, furnishings, condition and any extras such as a garden or parking spaces. These factors can influence the rental price.

Cost calculation:

When setting the rent, also take into account the incidental costs incurred, such as insurance, maintenance, property taxes and other expenses associated with renting. Make sure that the rental price covers these costs and gives you a reasonable return.

As a landlord, you aim to achieve an appropriate return on your invested equity, which is referred to as return on equity. The permitted return is linked to the reference interest rate. The net yield can be up to 0.5% higher than the reference interest rate. According to a Federal Supreme Court ruling from October 2020, the yield may exceed the reference interest rate by 2 % if the reference interest rate is below 2 %. The reference interest rate is currently 1.5%. A maximum return of 3.5% is therefore permitted.

Given the current market situation and rising reference interest rates, it is important as a landlord to always be informed and know how to react in such situations. We therefore recommend that you download our rent adjustment checklist and take the necessary steps to react appropriately to rising reference interest rates.

2. legal aspects of renting out a house in Switzerland

Various legal aspects should be taken into account when renting out a house in Switzerland:

Rental agreement: Make sure that a legally valid rental agreement is concluded that contains all relevant conditions and agreements.

Rent: The rent should be set appropriately and taking into account the local market situation. Observe the regulations on rent levels and adjustments.

Right of abode: As a landlord, you must ensure that the tenant has an undisturbed right of abode and that the house meets the required standards, including safe and healthy living conditions.

Repairs and maintenance: As the landlord, you are responsible for the maintenance and repair of the property. Observe the legal regulations and keep the house in good condition.

Service charges: Inform the tenant about the service charges and regulate the cost settlement transparently and correctly.

Termination: Observe the notice periods and conditions in accordance with the rental agreement and the statutory provisions.

Insurance: Make sure that the house is adequately insured, both with regard to the building itself and any liability risks.

It is advisable to seek advice from a legal advisor or real estate expert with specialist knowledge of Swiss tenancy law to ensure that all legal aspects are properly taken into account.

Checklist for landlords

Use our checklist to make sure you don't forget anything when renting out your home.

3. preparation and advertisement for the rental of a house

To successfully advertise a house for rent in Switzerland, you should consider the following points:

  1. Meaningful description: Create a detailed and appealing description of the house, including information on the number of rooms, area, furnishings, location and special features.

  2. High-quality photos: Use high-quality photos to present the house attractively. Show different rooms, the garden and other relevant areas.

  3. Clear information on rental conditions: Clearly state the rental price, ancillary costs and any additional services. Information on the deposit, minimum rental period and availability should also be included.

  4. Target group-oriented approach: Think about which target group your house appeals to (families, singles, senior citizens, etc.) and formulate your ad accordingly. Emphasize the advantages of the house for this target group.

  5. Provide relevant information: Provide information about the infrastructure in the area, such as shopping facilities, schools, public transportation and leisure facilities.

  6. Distribution of the ad: Use online real estate portals, social media and local classifieds to spread the word about your ad. Also use personal contacts and recommendations to reach potential tenants.

  7. Seriousness and reliability: Ensure professional and reliable communication with interested parties. Respond to inquiries promptly and arrange viewing appointments.

By taking these aspects into account, you increase the chances of successfully renting out your property and finding suitable tenants. Find out more about how to successfully advertise a property here.

4. costs and ancillary costs when renting out a house in Switzerland

If you rent out a house, you can expect various costs and ancillary costs. These include:

Maintenance costs: As a landlord, you are obliged to ensure that the property is maintained to preserve its value. This may involve costs for repairs, maintenance of heating and sanitary facilities, garden maintenance and similar.

Insurances: You should take out buildings insurance to protect your home against damage such as fire, water or storms. Liability insurance can also be useful to protect yourself against possible claims for damages.

Administrative costs: If you entrust the management of the property to a professional property management company, you will incur management costs. These may vary depending on the scope of the services.

Service charge settlement: As a landlord, you are obliged to draw up a service charge statement and allocate the service charges proportionately to the tenants. Costs may be incurred for water, heating, electricity, waste disposal and the like.

Vacancy costs: If the property is vacant between tenants, you will potentially lose income. It is important to take this into account when calculating the costs.

The exact costs may vary depending on the size, condition and location of the house. It is advisable to carry out a realistic calculation and include all relevant costs in the rental calculation in order to ensure a profitable rental.

What do you need to successfully market your rental property? Consider the following points:

  • High-quality photos of the property (ideally 360° images and VR tours offer)
  • Precise description of the property including advantages
  • Explanation of the location and details of the surroundings – view, road access, public transport connections, neighborhood, distance to schools, shopping facilities, information on the municipality, tax burden, etc.
  • Create sales documentation
  • Advertise property on online portals

5 Duties and responsibilities of a landlord in Switzerland

Taxes:

As the landlord of a house in Switzerland, various taxes apply. This primarily includes income tax and wealth tax. Income tax is levied on the rental income earned, while property tax is calculated on the value of the rented property and house.

There are also certain costs and expenses that can be deducted from taxes and thus reduce the tax burden. These include, for example:

  • Interest on mortgage loans
  • Costs for repairs and maintenance
  • Insurance premiums
  • Administration costs and broker commissions
  • Property and building insurance
  • Expenses for the management of the house (e.g. cleaning, garden maintenance)

It is important to document all expenses and costs properly in order to be able to claim them on your tax return. It is recommended to consult a tax advisor to understand the exact tax rules and deductions according to local laws and regulations.

Duties:

A landlord of a house in Switzerland must fulfill the following obligations:

  1. Provision of safe and habitable accommodation for the tenant.
  2. Conclusion of a written rental agreement that regulates the rights and obligations of both parties.
  3. Obtaining a rental deposit and proper management of this deposit.
  4. Carrying out regular repairs and maintenance work on the house.
  5. Punctual billing of operating costs and ancillary costs.
  6. Compliance with the statutory notice periods and procedures.
  7. Respect for the tenant’s privacy and compliance with data protection.
  8. Guarantee of an appropriate rent adjustment in accordance with the statutory provisions.
  9. Fulfillment of all tax and official obligations, including the reporting of rental income.

It is important to familiarize yourself with the specific legal provisions of Swiss tenancy law and to seek legal advice if you have any questions to ensure that all obligations as a landlord are met.

6. checklist for renting out a house

Various documents are required to successfully rent out your home.

A handover protocol should be drawn up to record the condition of the house at the time of handover.

A registration form or questionnaire for potential tenants is also required, together with a copy of a valid identification document such as a Swiss identity card, passport or residence permit.

Proof of income such as payslips or annual financial statements for the self-employed and an extract from the debt collection register should also be submitted. It is important to provide these documents in full and up to date in order to handle the rental process efficiently.

Handover protocol

Use our helpful handover protocol.

7. rent a house with an estate agent?

If you want to rent out your home, estate agents can provide valuable support. Agents have extensive knowledge and experience in the real estate market, which can help you make the rental process more efficient and find potential tenants. They support you in setting an appropriate rental price, preparing an attractive exposé and conducting viewings. They also carry out credit and reference checks for potential tenants. The decision as to whether you want to use brokers depends on your individual preferences, your available time and your expertise.

If you decide to use a broker, there are some important aspects and questions that you should clarify in the brokerage contract. This includes the exact tasks of the estate agent, the agreement on remuneration and the determination of commission payments. It is also important to check the terms of the contract, such as notice periods and forms, as well as the existence of a tenant guarantee.

Don't miss out on our 5-year tenant guarantee!

If the tenants placed by us cancel within this period, we will immediately find a new tenant for our premium customers. Thus, we are the first and only Swiss brokerage agency to advocate sustainable leasing.

8. what you should decide - rent or sell your home?

In Switzerland, the question arises as to whether it is more financially advantageous to rent out or sell your home. Letting enables long-term income and investment opportunities, but also requires responsibility and time.

When you sell, you receive an immediate financial gain and avoid the responsibility of letting. The decision should be based on individual factors such as financial situation, long-term goals and personal preferences.

However, the decision as to whether you should rent out or sell your inherited home depends on various factors and there is no one-size-fits-all answer. Compared to apartments and commercial properties, houses are less profitable as a capital investment. This is mainly due to the fact that, as the owner of a single-family home, you have to bear all the costs of renovations and repairs. In contrast, the costs of maintaining condominium buildings are shared among all owners, which can improve profitability. Therefore, when deciding between renting and selling, you should carefully weigh up the individual circumstances, long-term costs and potential income.

An evaluation of the real estate market and professional advice can help you make the best decision.

9. tips for successfully renting out a house in Switzerland

Find out from experienced real estate experts in Switzerland how you can successfully rent out your home. Get valuable tips on working with real estate agents, developing an effective marketing strategy and selecting the right tenants for your property.

You should pay particular attention to these aspects when renting out a house:

Find out from experienced real estate experts in Switzerland how you can successfully rent out your home. Get valuable tips on working with real estate agents, developing an effective marketing strategy and selecting the right tenants for your property.

Size and type of house: The size and type of house influence the potential rental price and the target group. The requirements and preferences of tenants may differ depending on whether it is a detached house, terraced house or apartment building.

Garden and outdoor area: Houses often have a garden or outdoor area that must be maintained by the tenants. It is important to clearly define the responsibilities and obligations with regard to gardening and maintenance of the outdoor facilities in the tenancy agreement.

Service charges: Service charges, such as heating and water, can be higher in a house than in an apartment. It is important to communicate the service charges clearly and include them in the rental agreement.

Maintenance and repairs: As the landlord, you are responsible for the maintenance and repairs of the property. It is advisable to carry out regular inspections to identify and rectify potential problems at an early stage.

Parking facilities: The availability of parking spaces is often an important factor for houses. Make sure that sufficient parking spaces are available and clarify in the rental agreement which parking spaces are available to tenants.

Communal facilities: If the house is part of a residential complex or a shared property, the rules and obligations regarding the use of communal facilities such as playgrounds or common rooms should be clearly defined.

Free real estate advice

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FAQ's - Renting out a house: The most important questions

What aspects should I pay attention to if I want to rent out my home?

There are some important aspects to consider when renting out a house. This includes drawing up a solid rental agreement, setting an appropriate rental price, checking the legal requirements and preparing the property for potential tenants. You should also find out about service charge billing, choosing the right tenants and documenting the condition of the property in the handover protocol. It can also be helpful to seek advice from experts to ensure a smooth rental process.

Is it possible to rent out my own house?

Yes, as the owner of a house you have the right to rent it out. Renting out your own home offers advantages such as additional income and long-term investment opportunities. However, it is important to comply with local laws, enter into a solid lease agreement and make the property attractive to potential tenants.

How do I determine the appropriate rental price for my home?

The rental price depends on various factors, such as the location, the size and furnishings of the property and the local rental market. To determine an appropriate rental price, you can carry out market research, analyze comparable properties and, if necessary, seek advice from real estate experts. It is important to choose a fair rental price that is attractive both for you as a landlord and for potential tenants.

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