Renting out house and nebekosten


I will soon be renting out a house which comes with its own oil-based heating system. When people rent a flat they get some nebenkosten added to the rent, normally including water and heating, but I am not sure what’s the standard for single family houses.

I suppose the tenants will get their own water bill, similar to electricity? What about the oil? Should I fill up the tank and then charge them monthly or just tell them to fill it up themselves? Any first-hand experiences?


In my canton the utility providers are not allowed to send water bills directly to the tenant, it always goes to the owner, but this may vary from cantom to canton.

From my experience, most landlords add an amount x CHF to the monthly rent for Nebenkosten. The landlord pays all the bills and then once a year he provides a statement with the actual costs to the tenant and either pays them back if they paid too much Nebenkosten or sends them a bill if the Nebenkosten were too low.

The other possibility is to forward all the bills directly to the tenant, but you need to trust them that they pay it, as the bills are on your name. That’s how my landlord does it with us.

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It might be a problem for the oil though. Who goes to check if there is still oil? I think for oil is the tenant that do it all.

I am a tenant in Geneva and I receive the water & electric bills directly from the utility company.

Not sure if it is relevant but the water and electric meters are for our property only. Previously in a flat we only had an electric meter. Water and heating oil was a shared cost with other flats, no dedicated metering

I also get the electricity bills directly, but not the water bills. It’s funny because it is the same utility provider for water and electricity.

It’s a single property and nothing is shared with any other property.

When we we’re looking for houses to rent, most of those specified “Nebenkosten direkt zu Lasten des Mieters” which roughly translates to the tenant getting the bill directly. Or in your case, they would be responsible for the oil themselves. In comparison, normal flats are mostly with some Pre-Paid monthly “Nebenkosten” as mentioned.

I suggest to become a member of something like “HEV Schweiz” if you want to become a landlord, they have all sorts of useful information, templates, etc. - most of it is in German but you can translate it through other services. :slight_smile:
I’m not a landlord myself so I don’t actually know the subscription cost.

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Yes, I am actually a member, it costs 70/year I think. It’s good advice but I don’t have a good experience so far: besides constantly sending me newspapers and invitations to vote SVP, they have not been super helpful when I asked some (legal) questions I had in the past.


I would take charge of oil/chimney sweep/heating maintenance. Simply because you can transfer the cost 1:1 by the end of the year to your tennants. And only if you pay the supplier, you can contol their work.

If you tennants choose a cheap provider you may risk damage on the equipment. Good luck in this case…

About the oil supply planning: most tanks are constructed to last 1 year. If not you can ask the tennants to send a picture of the level every month or so during winter.


I’ve never seen oil being paid for by the tenants direclty: it’s something you have to buy a reserve of, so a tenant filling the oil and moving out would loose big time (and checking the level of oil and their buying price to reimburse them would be a hassle). It’s also the only utility bill where you can choose your provider, so it can both be a tad overwhelming for the tenant, or they can botch it in some ways.

Heating is the one bill I’ve always had to pay a fixed advanced payment for (when it was not purely linked to electricity consumption). Practices for the other utilities have varied from place to place depending on where I’ve lived and who the landlord was.

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