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What is Kaution (Apartment deposit) in Germany?

What is Kaution (Apartment deposit) in Germany?

What is Kaution (Apartment deposit) in Germany? How does the apartment rental deposit work? Why do German landlords require deposit? When do I pay the apartment deposit? How much do I have to pay? If these are your concerns, read on to learn more about the Kaution (Apartment deposit) in Germany and what you should be aware of.

What is the Kaution in Germany?

In Germany, the Kaution, also known as the Mietkaution, is a security deposit that renters must pay to their landlords upon signing a rental agreement. It is normally equal to three months’ rent and is meant to safeguard the landlord in the event that the renter causes property damage or fails to pay the rent.

The goal of the Kaution is to give financial protection to the landlord in the event that the tenant destroys the property or fails to pay the rent. It is also utilized to settle any unpaid debts or expenditures left behind by the renter after they exit the property.

How much is the Kaution?

Mietkaution is normally three times the cold rent. It is the most a landlord can ask for. Some landlords need a lower deposit.

Short-term rentals- The rules for furnished flats and short-term rentals are the same. For temporary residences, the Kaution is sometimes lower, but it may also be three times the cold rent.

When do I pay the(Apartment deposit) in Germany?

The Kaution is often paid at the start of the rental period and refunded to the tenant at the end of the agreement, providing that the renter has met their responsibilities and the property has not been damaged. You do not have to transfer the money right away after signing the lease. You have the option of waiting until the day before your lease begins. This will assist you in avoiding apartment fraud.

Where does my Kaution (Apartment deposit) go?

The Kaution is often paid in the form of a bank guarantee or a cash deposit in Germany. A bank guarantee is a commitment made by a bank to pay the landlord a specific amount of money if the tenant fails to complete their duties under the rental agreement. A cash deposit, on the other hand, is a sum of money given directly to the landlord and maintained in a separate account until the rental period ends.

Your money will be deposited into a savings account known as a Mietkautionskonto. Your deposit money cannot be used by the landlord. You and the landlord might alternatively agree to invest the money elsewhere.

When do I get my Kaution back?

Usually, within 6 months after moving out. The landlord is required to return your Kaution within a reasonable time. There is no legal limit, although 6 months is considered standard. Without a strong cause, it should not take longer than 6 months.

The landlord will normally retain your Kaution until they know how much you spent on utilities (Nebenkosten). You may have used more water and heat than anticipated, resulting in a higher bill. The Nebenkostenabrechnung is used to alter the utility bill once a year.

The landlord must return your deposit after you have received the utility bill (Nebenkostenabrechnung) and everything in the Übergabeprotokoll has been rectified. There is no other reason for them to hold your deposit.

Will I be able to reclaim all of my Kaution?

This is determined by the property’s state. If the landlord has to perform repairs, they will deduct the cost from your deposit. They cannot force you to pay to repair natural wear and tear. They can’t make you pay for harm that existed before you moved in.

If you do not return all of the keys, the landlord may charge you for the keys that are missing. If you lose several keys, the landlord may change all of the locks in the building and charge you for it. This may be quite costly. They may pay for it with your Kaution. This will be covered by your liability insurance. That is why you need liability insurance.

If the landlord decides to keep some or all of the Kaution, he or she must offer the renter a written explanation of why. If the tenant believes that the landlord has acted unfairly, they have the right to oppose the landlord’s decision and submit a complaint to the local housing authority.


When it comes to the Kaution, renters must be informed of their rights and duties. They should read and understand the conditions of the rental agreement thoroughly before signing it, and they should maintain a copy for their own records. To avoid any issues with the landlord, tenants should also keep the property in excellent shape and pay the rent on time.

Also, Read

What will change in Germany for tenants and homeowners in 2023?

Renting in Germany: Everything you need to know

How to find accommodation in Germany?

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