Rules and regulations

Early termination of tenancy agreement

If you terminate your agreement early, you have to find a replacement tenant.

Sometimes things move fast. You’ve found your dream apartment, you’ve decided to move abroad, or something unexpected happens. Suddenly, you find yourself having to move out of your home outside the specified notice period. In this situation, as well as starting to look for a new tenant, there are one or two things you should bear in mind.

The dates for giving notice on an apartment are usually defined in the tenancy agreement. If no dates are specified, the standard notice periods for your canton of residence will apply. Here you will find a list of notice periods for all cantons. If you give notice on your apartment outside the official notice period, you are legally obliged to propose a replacement tenant for your landlord.

Early termination – how it works

  • Notify your landlord
    You must give your landlord written notice by registered post of your intention to vacate the apartment outside the standard notice period. Remember to keep your postal receipt and a copy of the letter for your records.
  • Find a new tenant
    To be on the safe side, it's a good idea to propose more than one new tenant for your landlord, in case one changes their mind at short notice. Even better, have every prospective tenant fill in the relevant application form, so that your landlord has a selection of tenants to choose from. You can usually obtain this form from your landlord.
  • Is the landlord obliged to accept the new tenant?
    The landlord can reject prospective tenants, but if he rejects a reasonable and financially solvent tenant, he will have to find a new one himself.
  • What requirements must a replacement tenant meet?
    The new tenant must be prepared to conclude the tenancy agreement under the same terms and conditions as before. He must be financially solvent and a reasonable replacement for the landlord. Rejected tenants can request a written explanation from the landlord for their own protection.
  • Acceptance of the new tenant
    Once a tenant is found, the landlord usually confirms in writing that you are released from your tenancy agreement. If no confirmation is received, you are advised to contact the landlord after one or two weeks – depending on the urgency of the move – to request this confirmation.
  • What if I can’t find a tenant?
    Unfortunately, as a tenant, you are obliged to pay the rent and all the other costs arising until the next standard notice date. If you're lucky, the landlord may be willing to waive some of the costs. Even better, if the vacancy of the apartment falls conveniently for the landlord in that he can use the time to carry out long-overdue renovation work, there will be no rent at all to pay.