German Apartments = Good Preparation for Home Ownership

Unlike in the US, when you rent an apartment in Germany you are responsible to see to the majority of apartment repairs.

-Sink broken?

-Toilet Leaking?

-Drain in Tub backed up?

-Ceiling lights burnt out?

-Water Heater in need of yearly service check?

-Windows in need of better winter insulation?

The response to all of these apartment problems (all of which, we have encountered in Germany, btw) is a loud: DO IT YOURSELF. Don’t call the landlord, don’t ask a neighbor, get out your handyman cap and get to it.

Needless to say, Drew has become quite the handyman over the past few years. Like it or not, it is what it is and we making the best out of it and are choosing to see it as good preparation for future home ownership.

Mr. Fix-it himself, tackling the sink.

What was the last thing you repaired in your home?




5 Responses to “German Apartments = Good Preparation for Home Ownership”

  1. Michelle writes:

    Ha! I replaced our faucet in the kitchen! 😀 Exactly the same!
    I hate this task, but the damned thing broke for the second time in 6 years. grml
    But we do call our landlord (so the agency which handles our house) quite a lot for such things.

  2. Bert writes:

    Actually no, you are *not* required to do it yourself! If you just need to change a light bulb – yes, go ahead and replace it.

    But if something- such as your sink – breaks – call your landlord. He needs to replace it and pay the plumber.

    As a rule:
    Something (bigger than a light bulb) is broken: call the landlord!
    Something needs cleaning: your turn!

    E.g.: sink pipe is clogged up: DIY
    Broken sink or toilet leaks: call your landlord

    Don’t let your landlord fool (and get rid of) you.

  3. Blue Cakes Blogger writes:

    Hi Bert, thanks for your comment. Actually, as our kitchen was purchased and installed by us (didn’t come with the apartment) all kitchen repairs are left to us to fix. I assume it’s different it you have a built in kitchen. 🙂

  4. Bert writes:

    Hello Lisa,

    Yes, I guess you’re right. If the kitchen is yours, all that repair work is up to you. Bummer.

    But you can of course sell your kitchen to your landlord when you soon move back to the U.S. – which according, to your last entry, happens very soon.

    All the best,

  5. Blue Cakes Blogger writes:

    Thanks, Bert. It’s funny you mention this because we actually just sold our kitchen. We tried to sell it to our landlord, but they said they weren’t interested in buying it as they didn’t want the responsibility of having to fix it for the next tenant if something went wrong!

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