What damages a tennant is obligated to compensate

2021-12-01 i Hyresrätt
When we moved out of our Uppsala apartment, our landlord billed us for drilling holes for shelving. We had put up two shelves, each used four small drill holes. We had received written consent in advance of drilling from a person working for the landlord, they said we could drill, "as long as it was not excessive", however they didn't define this number. Now when we quoted their own email back to them, they claim that the inspector decided the damage was too much, and they then told us we could put up a shelf with "one, maybe two holes". This would be unsafe for our small child, and goes against installation instructions. They are even saying that because it was a new build when we moved in, that this changes the situation. In their latest communication they threatened to take us to court. What are our rights here?

Hello and thank you for submitting your question here at lawline !

You should not have to compensate your landlord for the drilled holes, as long as the "damage" it caused is considered as a effect of normal usage of the apartment

Normally the tenant has to compensate the landlord for any damage the tenant themselves have caused intentionally or through negligence (12:24 JB). But, damage that is caused by normal usage of one's apartment is exempt from this rule. Examples of normal usage of one's apartment is nailing or drilling holes to put up frames, mirrors, shelves or anything else of that kind. Obviously, drilling a large amount of holes that cause major damage cannot be considered as normal usage. Although it seems like in your case that the damage is pretty insignificant, and thus within the frames of "normal usage". Therefore you should not have to pay for the restoration the landlord is doing.

I hope that answered your question !

Eles Karahalilovic
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