This must be taken into account when renovating the bathroom in the rented apartment

The ravages of time do not stop at the bathroom – signs of wear and tear and defects are inevitable. With renovation and refurbishment measures, you can quickly make the bathroom at home homely again. But what is allowed with regard to bathroom renovation in rented apartments? Where can the tenant lend a hand and when is the landlord’s consent required ? We’ll tell you.

Bathroom modernization in the rental property: what is allowed?

The landlord is legally obliged to maintain the bathroom. That means: The bathroom and its sanitary elements have to work. Therefore, a certain amount of wear and tear on the part of the tenant must be accepted. Whether superficial cracks in the bathroom ceramics or the small-format, mostly white standard tiles that create a rather dreary flair. The appearance is not decisive and the landlord is not obliged to any beautification measures.

Since tenants are not entitled to modernization of the bathroom, it makes sense to simply become active in the bathroom yourself. So if you want to change something to feel more comfortable in your bathroom, you can do this through renovation or modernization.

In general, minor changes that can be undone without problems or invasive interventions and that do not cause any damage are acceptable.

Mirrors, lamps, towel rails and other bathroom elements such as the toilet seat can be attached or replaced without consulting the landlord. You should only be prepared for the fact that the landlord will ask you to undo the changes when you move out. However, these interventions are not problematic.

Tip: Attaching mirrors, towel rails and the like often requires one or two drill holes, both in the tiles and in the joints. These elements can usually not be fixed in any other way and in this case drilling holes must be accepted by the landlord . If you want to avoid possible disputes, you can use suitable adhesive variants, for example in the form of two-component adhesive. However, you should seek advice on this in advance to ensure that no traces of adhesive remain or materials are destroyed.

However, if drilling is required, it is advisable to drill into the joints as far as possible. This is because these can be easily filled again when you move out.

Bathroom refurbishment in the rented apartment: This is important to note!

When renovating the bathroom, caution is always required and if you are unsure, it is advisable to talk to experts on the subject of tenancy law and get tips.

For tenants with a renovation project, the following generally applies: In the case of major structural changes, the consent of the landlord must be obtained. Otherwise you run the risk of getting a warning.

Quite apart from that, the probability is very high that the landlord – if no consent has been given – will demand the “original condition” when moving out and then it will have to be dismantled at a great deal of money. So the tenant invests twice and unfortunately unnecessarily.

What renovation measures should the landlord be informed of?

Whether you want to paint over the old tiles in your bathroom, change the backsplash or have new ones laid straight away, long for a new shower or just want to do without the space-consuming bathtub: Do not make any changes until you have spoken to your landlord and have agreed. 

Care must be taken when performing invasive procedures such as removing the tub to install a larger shower. If work is not done properly here, there can be enormous damage to the apartment and even to the entire residential building. Furthermore, if no specialist was at work, the renter must pay for all repairs and costs himself.

written regulation of the bathroom renovation in the rented apartment between landlord and tenant is therefore recommended in any case. Not only because the tenant sometimes invests a lot of money. The landlord also has an understandable interest in his property being treated professionally.

With a modernization or bathroom renovation, the value of the rental property increases. Therefore, under certain circumstances, the tenant should consider securing the investment costs, for example in the form of a compensation payment after moving out . It is also possible to reduce the monthly rental costs .

Special case: Barrier-free conversion of the bathroom

For people who are restricted in their mobility due to a handicap, the situation is somewhat different when it comes to agreeing to renovation measures in the rented apartment. Statutory regulations stipulate that in certain cases the landlord must agree to the conversion of the entrance to the apartment and the living quarters .

The structural work and the right to the same are based on the respective degree of disability of the tenant. In the case of barrier-free conversion, the landlord also has the option of securing himself for the dismantling with an additional sum (in addition to the deposit).

However, the tenant bears the costs for the barrier-free or disabled-friendly conversion. However, thanks to numerous funding programs , there is the opportunity not to have to pay all the costs. There are DIN standards for barrier-free living. However, these are to be seen as recommendations and are not a legal obligation. What is funded in detail always depends on the respective institution or the federal state.

10 facts about bathroom renovation in a rented apartment at a glance

No one – whether owner or tenant – should have to do without a beautiful bathroom. After all, you stay in the bathroom at home several times a day. Here you should not only find peace, but also relaxation, with design and furnishings playing an important role.

For this reason alone, you should not miss out on these ten interesting facts about bathroom renovations in rented apartments.


In any case, the landlord is obliged to keep the premises and thus the bathroom in a livable condition. However, functionality comes before optics.


It is common for bathrooms to be renewed every 20 to 30 years. It is important that the tenant informs the landlord of any defects. The extent to which a renewal is necessary always depends on the specific individual case and other factors (e.g. usage habits).


With the notification of defects or other complaints, the landlord has the right to inspect them on site. If no modernization or bathroom renovation takes place, the tenant can obtain a rent reduction and enforce his claim for renewal in court.


In addition to the approval of the bathroom renovation, you can also have the landlord certify that you have waived the obligation to dismantle your bathroom.


If tenants intervene in the building structure without consent, there is a risk of a warning and even termination and the costs of demolition.


There are no legal obligations for barrier-free living, so the bathroom renovation is very individual.


If you agree to the barrier-free conversion of the rented apartment, the landlord has the right to request additional security.


The amount of the additional security, on which the landlord can make the renovation dependent, is based on the expected costs of the dismantling.


Floor-to-ceiling tiling, which is still very common, generally makes bathrooms appear smaller and less comfortable. The trend is therefore towards reducing the backsplash.


Bathrooms are increasingly being perceived as an essential part of the living environment. In any case, a modern, functional design increases the quality of life of the tenants and thus the value of the property.

Bathroom renovation in your rented apartment: Schramm from Munich supports you

If you want to free your bathroom from the drab standard look, Schramm from Munich is at your side with advice and action. We will be happy to answer any questions you may have in one of our bathroom exhibitions and, of course, also via telephone and e-mail.

Once the measures for bathroom refurbishment or renovation have been agreed with the landlord, we will help you with the planning and implementation – for an all-round successful feel-good bathroom.

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