Typically, rental contracts in Cluj are pretty consistent. They are in place to ensure that the property owner has security and assurances that you will not abuse your ability to stay at their property, and also offer you a safety net in terms of your deposit and to prevent any unexpected rent increases.
However, unless the contract is declared at the financial office, which is indicated by an official stamp on your contract, it technically means that the contract is simply a piece of paper which you have signed as an agreement between you and the owner of the property.
Unfortunately, this is a somewhat common practice, as it reduces the costs of taxes applied to the rental price of the property, but does mean that you lose some security. It’s always better to have a contract which has been declared, however, it is not your responsibility to declare the contract, but that of the property owner.
In the event that you would experience some difficulties with the owner of the apartment, you should consult with a legal representative to discuss your options. However, in most cases, as long as the contract is completed correctly, even if it’s not declared at the financial office, in the case of any complications where the owner of the property has changed the terms, which conflict with the information outlined in the contract, or refuses to return the security deposit, the outcome is usually in the favour of the tenant, as long as you can demonstrate that you have adhered to the terms.
WHAT TO EXPECT IN YOUR CONTRACT
Providing the property owner is using a standard contract, you’ll expect to find the following criterial applied:
- The address of the property being rented
- The name of the owner with his / her CNP (identification number)
- Your name and an identification number from an identity document or passport
- The amount for the deposit / guarantee
- Your monthly rent and payment method in RON or EUR
- The date on which you rent should be paid and any “late fees”
- Your responsibility to pay any utilities (Gas / Electricity / Water)
- Your responsibility to pay for any repairs to damage inflicted by you
- Their responsibility to maintain the major appliances and equipment (Heating / White Goods / Plumbing / Electricity)
- Your agreed rental period in months or years
- Terms for cancelling the contract
- Terms for returning the deposit / guarantee
- The “Notification Period” – in case of major changes or cancellation
- Any additional clauses (e.g. the ability to extend the contract)
Ideally, you will need someone with you to translate the contract, even if an english version is presented. This will ensure that both the Romanian version and the English version are accurate and valid. It also allows you to confirm or raise any questions you may have, prior to signing the contract.
Any translation of a contract requires the Romanian version in order to be valid and legally binding.