Landlords and self-performed services: are self-issued invoices apportionable?

Landlords and self-performed services: are self-issued invoices apportionable?

As a landlord, you’ll always have to deal with various costs incurred when renting out property. One of these cost factors is possible own work that you have performed as a landlord. If you want to pass on these costs to your tenants, the question arises as to whether invoices issued by you for personal services are apportionable or not.

As a general rule, only costs incurred as a result of a professional service can be passed on to tenants. An exception to this are own services that were carried out by a craftsman and can be proven by an invoice.

But what about self-issued invoices for personal services? This is where opinions differ. Some courts have already ruled that self-issued invoices from landlords are apportionable, as long as they are reasonable and understandable. However, other courts have made a contrary decision.

In general, therefore, before you as a landlord want to pass on self-issued invoices for personal services to your tenants, you should seek legal advice and check the legal situation. This is the only way to ensure that any apportionment of costs is legally secure and unproblematic.

Landlords and self-performed services: are self-issued invoices apportionable?

The importance of personal contribution

Own work means that the tenant does the work himself and carries out repairs or renovation work in his rented apartment. This work is not carried out or commissioned by the landlord and is therefore not included in the rent. Rather, it is a personal obligation of the tenant to keep his apartment in a reasonable condition.
However, if the landlord himself carries out repairs or renovations in the apartment, he can invoice for them. However, the question is whether these costs are apportionable and may therefore be passed on to the tenants.
The answer depends on whether the expenses for the landlord’s own work can be considered maintenance or modernization. Maintenance costs are apportionable and can be passed on to the tenants, while modernization costs are not apportionable and must be borne by the landlord himself.
It is therefore the landlord’s responsibility to prove that the expenses for the in-house work can be considered as maintenance and are therefore apportionable. A precise check of the invoices and the work actually carried out is therefore important in order to avoid possible disputes between landlord and tenant.

Is it permissible for the landlord to issue invoices?

As a landlord, you can sometimes carry out certain work in your property yourself or have it carried out by a third party. However, if you perform this work yourself, you must be careful when issuing invoices.

If you, as a landlord, issue invoices yourself, you must ensure that the invoice complies with the legal requirements and contains all the necessary information. You must also ensure that the prices of the services provided are reasonable and not excessive.

A difficult question is whether you, as a landlord, can pass on the cost of the services you perform to your tenants. This depends on a number of factors, such as the type of services performed and the specific terms in the lease agreement.

  • As a landlord, if you perform minor maintenance, such as repairs to faucets or light fixtures, you can likely pass the cost on to your tenants.
  • However, it is more difficult to apportion major work, such as renovation or refurbishment work, to your tenants. In this case, you will need to ensure that this work was indeed necessary and that the cost is reasonable.

In any case, it is advisable to consult with a lawyer or tax advisor beforehand to ensure that you meet the legal requirements and do not run into any legal problems.

Apportionability of costs for own work by landlords

The question of whether landlords can pass on the costs of their own services to their tenants is a frequently discussed topic. In particular, the question arises as to whether the landlord’s own work is also apportionable if the landlord issues the invoices himself.

As a general rule, landlords can only pass on costs to their tenants that were incurred as part of the tenancy and are directly related to it. This includes, for example, the costs for administration, maintenance or repairs.

However, if the landlord’s own work involves work that does not directly serve the tenancy, such as the landlord’s own renovation of the living space, these costs are usually not apportionable. It does not matter whether the landlord himself issues the invoices or not.

It is therefore advisable for landlords to only carry out work that directly serves the tenancy and is therefore apportionable. If, however, the tenant carries out work on his own that is not apportionable, the only option left to the landlord is to bear the costs himself.

Apportionability of own work by landlords

If a landlord himself carries out repair or renovation work in his rented property, the question arises as to whether these costs may be apportioned to the tenant. The apportionability of such personal contributions is only given if certain conditions are met.

First of all, the work carried out must contribute to the maintenance and modernization of the property. No pure cosmetic repairs may be carried out, which only serve the visual enhancement. The landlord must also be able to prove that the work was carried out professionally and at a reasonable price.

Furthermore, the rental agreement must contain a corresponding clause on the apportionability of own work. This clause must be clearly and unambiguously worded and must not contain any intransparencies or ambiguities. In addition, it must comply with legal requirements and regulations.

When calculating the apportionability, the temporal relationships must also be taken into account. The costs of own work can only be apportioned to tenants who were already living in the property at the time the work was carried out. In addition, the apportionment amounts must not be excessive and must be in reasonable proportion to the actual costs.

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