Foreigners.cz is a relocation agency that is helping foreign people to find accommodation thanks to their well-stocked database. It acts as a mediator between the tenants and the landlords. This implies that the tenants are responsible for their own actions throughout the rental period and they should respect some basic principles of the Czech law. Are you curious what falls within your responsibility?
- Termination of your lease
You are just moving into your new apartment so it might be a bit strange to think about your lease termination, but we advise to pay special attention to this point because the process of your lease termination varies according to the type of lease agreement and its specific conditions! Remember that your departure is something you need to plan ahead so it’s as smooth as possible! Czech law introduces legal time periods that exist to protect both the landlord and the tenant from consequences of sudden unexpected lease cancellation.
If you have agreed for a lease of an indefinite period, you have to let your landlord know that you intend to end the lease at least three full calendar months before the date you want to leave, for example submitting a termination notice during August would mean that you can leave after 3 months (September, October, November) – at the end of November, submitting on 1 September already means you can leave at the end of December (after October, November, December). This termination notice has to be written and signed, in two copies (one for you, the other for the landlord). Some landlords are OK with a short email note but to avoid any confusion and misunderstanding, we highly recommend to send your notice officially by registered mail or have it signed by the landlord. If not sure how to proceed and what is the deadline in your particular case, you should let Foreigners.cz know, so your Relocation Consultant can help you in the process.
If you have agreed for a lease of a definite period, the end date is already set in the contract. If the circumstances change and you want to leave before, the possibility of submitting a termination notice has to be explicitly stated in the lease contract, otherwise it is not possible to end the lease before the date agreed and the only way around it is to find a replacement – somebody else who will take over the lease under the same conditions.
Don’t despair – Foreigners.cz is here to help you if needed, we can help you promote your apartment and find a new tenant!
- Takeover protocol
The apartment takeover is an important step when renting an apartment because this is the moment when you need to check the state of the apartment when you enter the premises. The furniture and appliances will be audited and recorded on a written document that you will sign to agree on the accommodation conditions. If you see something that is not mentioned but you think should be noted, feel free to ask to add these details on paper. This step is crucial because the conditions of the flat will be evaluated again when you leave and if something has been damaged, you will have to cover the cost so even a small scratch is worth noting down.
Your Relocation Consultant has experienced tens of apartment takeover, so you can rely on his expertise and be sure that nothing will be forgotten or omitted!
- Security deposit
The security deposit is paid when signing the lease contract and it will be given back to you after you leave the apartment – that is why it is often called Refundable Security Deposit
Why Security? Because it serves as a guarantee for the landlord who entrusted you his property – in case there is a damage, you are late with your rent payment or there is underpayment of utilities (=you spend more than than average advance payments), the landlord can deduct such costs from the security deposit. It cannot be used as a last rent because as mentioned above, the accommodation has to be checked first and your overall consumption of utilities has to be calculated (see 4.). Then, when all is done, you will be able to get your security deposit back (with possible deductions).
In the Czech Republic, you pay for energy in advance. Bills are paid on a monthly basis by means of a fixed fee called advance payment or incorrectly deposit (in Czech “zálohy”, “energie”, “inkaso”) and cover the average monthly cost (either paid to your landlord or directly to the energy provider).
Now, it’s possible than you use more energies than the average or less. To calculate this exact amount of utilities you use, the individual meter is checked when you enter the flat and when you leave it. The total consumption – difference of these numbers – will then be compared to the actual amount you paid. If you consumed more than you paid, the difference will be deduced from your security deposit. In case you consumed less, you will receive money back. Note that the final calculation is done within four months after you leave the premises, so don’t expect your security deposit to be refunded immediately, but rather after the final calculation, which can take up to four months.
Thanks to its long-term cooperation with many landlords, Foreigners.cz is usually able to help you get your security deposit refunded much sooner than the legal time period. Moreover your Relocation Consultant can check the final calculation and compare it to the apartment takeover protocol to make sure all was processed correctly and fairly.
- Pay on time
Needless to say, you need to pay your rent and utilities on time to you landlord and energy provider(s) if the contracts are separated. This is crucial to avoid penalties!
Make sure to send the amount to correct bank accounts too, because you don’t want to send money to random people!
If the payee requested any identification of the payment (e.g. your apartment number, number of your internet contract, electricity provider’s client number etc.), make sure to include it in the payment identification number (“variabilní symbol”) and/or message for recipient (“zpráva pro příjemce”) fields when submitting the payment order, otherwise your payment may get lost.
You may also consider setting up a standing order to ensure that the payment is deducted in time regularly and automatically, but make sure you have enough money on your account.
- Regulations of coexistence
If you don’t want to incur your neighbors’ wrath, it’s better to follow some rules for peaceful cohabitation. For example, keep quiet between 10 pm and 6 am. This is usually a time when people sleep and nobody likes to be waken up by noisy neighbors. Then, for practical and safety reasons, you need to keep corridors and emergency exits clear. If you plan on having a pet in your apartment, you should also check your landlord’s policy on it and discuss it in advance.
So here are the things you should be aware of when you are renting an apartment in the Czech Republic. Nothing seems too far-fetched and for most of it, it’s common sense! But we thought it could be useful to let you know what is expected from you when you sign a lease agreement in the country.
In case you need assistance, Foreigners.cz offers complex support and consultations throughout your stay in the Czech Republic. You can check the advantages offered by our VIP services here.
Whether you rent apartment with us or not, we are ready to help you with your inquiries and even difficult situations! Although we are not proud, we have experienced a wide range of unpleasant situations that our clients were facing – we encourage you to avoid complications by being well informed of your rights and responsibilities!