Vilde Risa, 19, and cohabiting Ida Jacobsen, 21, have seen so many young people meet when they first hit the rental market.
Downstairs apartment with mold and miserable air they rented for 7500 NOK outside Stavanger a year ago.
Mold is everywhere
At first everything seemed fine. But a month later, the couple peeked behind a large wardrobe.
There they found a thick layer of mold.
Then they passed through the entire apartment.
– We found mold in the living room, bedroom, kitchen and bathroom. There was mold behind the shower and inside the cupboards in the bathroom. And not least in the windows.
The cup also physically tormented Risa, and she could feel it on her breath.
– I was constantly tired in the nose.
The 19-year-old said she reported mold to the owner in the apartment, and was told they could wash it away. He thought there was mold because they didn’t have enough ventilation.
– FifthOwner’s Secretariat
Roommates paid 7,500 NOK per month for the basement apartment. The deposit has been deposited into the owner’s private account. According to the law, the deposit must be placed in a separate account.
– We are very young, we know nothing about it, and we trusted the owner, says Risa.
They were 18 and 20 years old when they moved into the apartment. They moved out of the apartment after living there for less than a year.
She thinks it’s hard to be taken seriously in the rental market when you’re so young.
Especially when you don’t have much experience. Most people haven’t lived in five different places with so many references, Risa says.
The owner told NRK that the mold arose because Jacobsen and Risa were not breathing enough. He then created a deposit account for the new tenants.
Read the full response from the owner at the bottom of the issue.
Be careful of this
This fall, many new people, including students, will enter the rental market. NRK spoke to three people who know a lot about what you should look for and what you are entitled to when renting a home.
You should never rent a property without seeing it first. Bring the open house.
– If you rent the property invisibly, you may get a nasty surprise when you move in. This is according to Thomas Iversen, senior legal advisor at the Norwegian Consumer Council.
If you are unable to go watch, have someone else watch the property for you.
Recommended as Iversen Consumer Council Checklist before you rent.
It is important to look for any errors, defects, or screen damage. Check, for example, that white goods are working as they should, and that there is no moisture damage in the apartment.
– It is important to read the contract carefully, check the notice period and check the liability of you and the owner.
This is according to the head of the Norwegian Students’ Organization (NSO), Maika Godal Dam.
She says it is a good idea to have someone review the contract with you.
You should check how rent is paid, when and to whom. Check if electricity is included in the rent. Find out what you should arrange for yourself such as the Internet, TV and hot water.
If electricity is not included in the rent, it is important to ask the landlord how high the electricity consumption is.
Before signing the contract, it is also a good idea to review the property with the owner and write a contract Status report.
Also take pictures and document any damage so you won’t be blamed for something you didn’t do, says Goodall Dam.
This is especially true when you take over the apartment.
Yngve Gran Andersen of the Tenants Association recommends that those who will live in a group where they have a joint contract with the landlord, also enter into a written agreement among themselves.
For example, if one of the group members does not pay the rent, the landlord can ask one of the others to pay the rent.
So the agreement should be clear about who will pay what and at what time.
You are the guarantors of each other. This means that if one of you can’t pay or refuses to pay his rent, the others are responsible for paying that person’s rent, Andersen says.
The agreement facilitates the recovery of payments from the person who owes the money.
You can order this
If the lease agreement is made orally, you can request a written contract.
Godal Dam, recommend everyone to use standard nodes. You can find it at Consumer Council website.
By signing the lease agreement, you have several rights according to rent law. Both the landlord and the tenant must comply with it.
It is important to find out if the landlord has written anything in the contract that is illegal regarding rental law. If this happens, you can demand that it be amended so that the contract becomes legal.
Andersen of the Tenants Association, says the deposit should always be placed in a trust account.
– The money should not go to the private account of the property owner, this is illegal, says Andersen.
Neither party has the opportunity to withdraw funds from the account on their own.
When moving, the house must be in the agreed upon condition. And you have to pay the amount you agreed upon.
-If there isn’t something it should be, you can ask the owner to correct the errors, says Iversen at the Consumer Council.
If you notice errors and omissions in the apartment when you move in, you must file a complaint within 14 days, according to rent law.
You can get help here
If you discover that a dormitory, for example, lacks an escape route after you move in, you should notify the landlord in writing as soon as possible.
This also applies if you find other defects in the house.
Andersen concludes that the lack of a suitable escape route at home would be grounds for termination of the lease.
If contacting the owner about defects and shortcomings does not lead to success, you can contact Rental Disputes Committee.
The commission is a government agency that provides guidance to landlords and renters, according to their websites.
If you or the landlord wish to terminate the lease, you can read about the rights you have Consumer Council website.
Here’s what the landlord who rented it says to Veldi and Ida:
The owner told NRK that he has rented the basement apartment since the family bought the house 20 years ago. At the time, they hadn’t heard that previous tenants had complained about damp or mould.
It is believed that the dampness arose because Jacobsen and Risa did not open windows or provide ventilation. There were also valves in several places in the apartment that were working.
The owner thought it was just the cup washing, and he did it after the women came out.
However, he acknowledges that no deposit account has been created, but that the deposit has been transferred to his own account.
– It was something we agreed on, he says.
The owner indicates that he created a deposit account afterwards.
He also says he did not receive any notification from the women about mold until the end of the lease.
Do you have ideas about the case you’ve read, or input on other cases we can ask about students in the rental market? Have you experienced discrimination, exorbitant rental rates, or have you simply mastered the rental market?
We want to hear your story! Feel free to send us an email.
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