May the landlord keep a key?


Jurisdiction is clear as to whether a landlord may keep a key for the rental property. He can not do it and no justification grants him the right to do so. The tenant can, however, declare his consent.

All access keys

By law, a landlord transfers the sole and exclusive right to use the rental property to his tenant. The consequence is the delivery of all existing keys that allow access to the rental object. This includes keys to rear entrances, skylights or patio doors.

If the renter is unsure whether he has received all the keys, he is allowed to change the locks. He must keep the original locks and all keys and reinsert them when moving out. If the tenant can prove that he has not been given all the keys, the landlord must pay the new locks.

Enter the leased property

If the landlord, contrary to his obligation to have handed all the keys, enter the leased property with a key, he commits trespassing. This can be brought to the display and is allowed a right of termination of the tenant.

Even in the case of the agreement of the tenant, the landlord may not enter the leased property in the absence of the tenant. In the lease, a special permit may be agreed, which names certain cases by name. These include threats or hazardous situations such as smoke, water leaks or incidents that endanger the leased property.

Obligation of the tenant

If the tenant is absent for a long time, such as on vacation, he may make a temporary delivery of a key to the landlord. Alternatively, a key can be deposited with friends, neighbors, a caretaker or relatives.

The landlord should be informed about where the key has been deposited and can be contacted. If a case of danger comes into delay, such as a fire or a water pipe break, the police and the fire brigade is entitled at any time to gain access to the leased property by force. If a key is available, property damage can be avoided.

Tips & Tricks

If you have a good relationship with your landlord, offer him to keep a reserve key. It can be stored in a sealed envelope and is only for emergencies.


Video Board: Key & Peele - Shady Landlord