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The explanations below relate to commercial and residential leases for which the provisions on protection against unfair rent apply.

Indexed lease

Most leases for commercial premises are indexed, but there are also indexed leases for houses and apartments.

Conditions to be met

The lease must be concluded for a minimum term of 5 years and only the Swiss consumer price index can be used as a reference. Both conditions are mandatory by law, i.e. they cannot be changed by a contractual clause. If these conditions are not met, the indexation clause will be null and void.The release clause or the diplomatic clause allowing the tenant to terminate the lease early are possible, but the landlord is bound to a minimum term of 5 years.The combination of an indexation clause with a staggering clause is prohibited.

Rent adjustments

Increases may be notified by the end of a month with 30 days' notice. The notification must be sent using the official notice of rent increase form.The lease for commercial premises formulated by the Geneva Real Estate Chamber and the USPI provides for an adjustment every 12 months. The leases formulated by the housing associations do not provide for such a clause.The rental lease may provide for an increase in the rent during the 5 years in the event of additional services.

Lease renewal

If the lease is renewed tacitly or by the application of an option right of 5 years or more, the indexation clause remains valid. If the lease is renewed for a term of less than 5 years, the indexation is no longer applicable.

At the end of the lease

If the lease is not tacitly renewed and the lessor wants to calculate a new rent according to the relative method, the calculation is based on the initial rent and the date of the conclusion of the lease or the last renewal.

Extension of the lease

If the tenant has obtained an extension of the lease by the competent authorities, the indexation clause is maintained, even if the extension is less than 5 years.


 © Written by Esther Lauber, Real Estate Trustee with Advanced Federal Diploma of Professional Education and Training, real estate manager,
Translated from French to English with DeepL, in case of doubt, the French or Germain version should apply

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