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When should you appeal against a landlord in Denmark?

The rental market in Denmark is expensive and competitive, with some landlords taking advantage of foreign renters new to the system. We outline your rights as a tenant in Denmark and what you can do when you need to make an appeal.

It is important to know your rights as a tenant renting in Denmark. Photo: Anne Bæk/Ritzau Scanpix

If you have a problem regarding your rented property, in all cases, the tenant must have tried to resolve the issue directly with the landlord first.

While it can be contentious to complain to your landlord, it is important to know that they are not allowed to evict you because of disagreements.

When negotiating with a landlord doesn’t work, there are other options, involving the Danish rent appeals board, the Danish Rent Act and hiring legal advice. We outline the options below.


Huslejenævnet is the Danish rent appeals board. You can get the rent appeals board to decide whether your tenancy terms are in accordance with the provisions of the Tenancy Act and the Housing Regulation Act.

There is a rent appeals board for each municipality and it costs 345 kroner (2023) to bring a case before them. The complaint must be in writing, and you must attach the necessary documents.

Topics you can appeal to Huslejenævnet about include: the price of rent and utility bills; notice given for rental increases; the amount of deposit and prepaid rent charged before moving in; property maintenance during tenancy; repayment of the deposit after the tenant moves out; noise disturbance in the property.

It’s worth noting that the waiting time for a case to be assessed by Huslejenævnet, has doubled in many areas since 2021, broadcaster DR has recently reported, based on figures from the Danish Authority of Social Services and Housing (Social- og Boligstyrelsen).

Some people are having to wait up to a year and a half for an answer to an appeal after landlords put up their rents. 

If your complaint about high rent is successful and was initiated within the first 12 months of taking over the lease, your rent will be reduced retroactively and going forward. If you bring the case after 12 months, rent reduction will be initiated only for the future.

Know your rent price rights

Before approaching your landlord and Huslejenævnet, it is worth knowing what rent is reasonable in your area.

Danish law restricts the amount by which landlords can increase rent, and a 2022 amendment capped this limit at 4 percent due to concerns related to inflation.

In Denmark, the rent determination rules vary between unregulated and regulated municipalities. In regulated municipalities, there is an additional difference in these rules depending on whether or not the building consists of one to six leases or more than seven leases.

Generally, rent must correspond to the value of the lease which is determined by comparing the rent for similar leases according to location, type, size, quality, equipment, and condition.

To check whether or not the rent you are paying for your lease is appropriate by these measures, you can visit a website like and enter the relevant information.

You can also check the appropriate utility costs here.

READ MORE: Deposits, complaints and registration: Five key things to know about renting in Denmark

The Danish Rent Act (Lejeloven)

You can use knowledge of the Danish Rent Act to protect yourself against landlords.

The Danish Rent Act, which doesn’t have an official English translation, was last updated in 2015. It sets the standard conditions for renting in Denmark and lays out protections for tenants that can’t be changed by contract.  

Landlords renting out more than one tenancy are technically classified as professional landlords and they must follow the Danish Rent Act.

Landlords renting out one tenancy (this includes renting out multiple rooms in one apartment), have more leniency, so it would be better to contact a legal representative in these cases (outlined further in this article).

Moving in rights covered by the Danish Rent Act

You can usually expect to pay the equivalent of three month’s rent as a deposit, plus three month’s rent in prepaid rent, and the first month’s rent to secure a property. So you are essentially paying seven month’s rent when you move in. Landlords can’t charge more than this, according to the Danish Rent Act.

When the tenant moves into a property, the landlord has to make a “move-in report” (indflytningsrapport), and when they move out, the landlord has to make a “move-out” report, as stated in paragraph 98 in the Danish Rent Act.

The tenant has a right to send a list of defects in the property within two weeks of moving in. If this is done within the two-week deadline, according to the Danish Rent Act, the tenant is not liable for these on moving out. 

Moving out rights covered by the Danish Rent Act

As well as the moving out report (fraflytningsrapport), the landlord has to invite the tenant to an inspection of the tenancy (flyttesyn), and there are certain deadlines the landlord has to follow, for example the inspection has to be within two weeks of the tenant vacating the property.

If these rules aren’t followed by the landlord, then the tenant has the right to the full deposit to be paid back, no matter the damage to the property. Similarly, if the rules are followed by the landlord, the tenant is obliged to comply with them.

If you don’t agree with the moving out report, you do not have to sign it. You can instead seek legal advice.

READ MORE: Do I have to varnish the floor? Why moving out in Denmark can be complicated

Before 2015, the landlord was allowed to renovate the apartment to be as good as new when a tenant moved out. But now, according to the Danish Rent Act, the landlord can’t charge for normal wear and tear.

However, landlords give the tenant responsibility for “interior maintenance” in section 11 of the rental contract, which includes returning the apartment in the condition you received it.

This means the deposit being used to cover repair costs that exceed the ordinary wear and tear, which may involve paint work and floors being varnished. This is why it is important to take pictures or videos of the apartment when you move into and out of the property, so you have documentation of its condition at the beginning of the lease. 

The Rent Act does not specify a deadline for when the landlord is required to repay the deposit. They must simply repay the deposit as soon as they have evaluated and covered the costs of potential damage to the property. It is the landlord’s responsibility to prepare and present a statement outlining repairs on which the deposit has been used.

Legal advice

A legal representative can write to your landlord and quite often, this settles the dispute quickly. If it doesn’t, the legal representative can bring the case before Huslejenævnet and if necessary, in court.

Lejerens Frie Retshjælp (or the Tenant’s Free Legal Aid) is a volunteer organisation of law students that helps tenants and landlords through contracts and settle specific disputes. 

Digura is a paid service that can correspond directly with your landlord and escalate the issue Huslejenævnet or court system if necessary.

Copenhagen Legal Aid (Retshjælp) can offer rental help for free if your personal pre-tax income does not exceed 344,000 kroner a year (single person), or if your joint pre-tax income does not exceed 437,000 kroner (married or living with a partner).

READ MORE: How to get your deposit back when renting in Denmark

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Why hot weather feels even hotter in Danish buildings

Denmark is in the top ten when it comes to countries worst prepared for a warmer climate, according to a new report.

Why hot weather feels even hotter in Danish buildings

While July has generally been one of the cooler summer months you’re likely to experience in Denmark, June was hot and dry.

In fact, last month’s high temperatures in Denmark may have felt particularly punishing because they were in Denmark rather than in a country better equipped to cope with hot weather.

Buildings and houses in the Nordic nation are relatively poorly equipped when it comes to high temperatures – something that could play an increasing role given changes to the climate expected in coming years.

A new report from Oxford University places Denmark among the countries which are the most poorly prepared for increasing global temperatures.

That is due in no small part to the construction of Denmark’s buildings, which historically has been with a different climate in mind to the one considered in the report, according to an expert who spoke to broadcaster DR.

“We design our buildings to keep the heat in for long periods and that’s why we have buildings that might not be ready for a future in which there’s a need for cooling,” Steffen Petersen, professor at Aarhus University’s Department of Civil and Architectural Engineering, told DR.

The use of glass in Danish buildings from the 1960s onwards is one important factor in this regard.

“We insulate well and also have large window panes which provide a good heat benefit, which is an important element in the winter to keep our energy consumption down. But it has the opposite effect in the summer where we don’t need a heat benefit, on the contrary it causes overheating,” Petersen said.

“Experts have always criticised this trend because it will end up with what we have now, a need for cooling in a country where we actually a characterised by temperatures that shouldn’t give the need for cooling,” he said.

The summer of 2018, which saw long unbroken spells of hot weather, brought the issue to the fore with reports of residents in newly-built developments in places like Aarhus Ø and the Nordhavn district of Copenhagen who found their homes so hot they were unable to stay in the living rooms, including at night.

What can be done to avoid overheated homes in the summer?

“There’s a risk that when people feel uncomfortable in their own homes with these temperatures, that they will invest in modern pumps that are relatively cheap and install them in urban areas to cool their homes, which gives increased energy use and noise pollution and would be bad for green transition,” Petersen said.

An expert with housing thinktank Bolius said that the problem was known in the real estate sector but there are steps residents can take.

That includes checking the size of west and south-facing windows and choosing home with a north-facing bedroom if possible.

“It’s this unfortunate problem that our houses are built like a thermos. They can keep the heat in during winter but also keep it inside once it’s already got in during the summer. Whereas old houses are a bit more draughty and are without such big windows,” Tue Patursson of Bolius told DR.

If you already live in an apartment that traps summer heat, there are mitigating steps advised by Patursson.

“Make sure the sun doesn’t get into the house. Look at what they do in the south. Use sun shades, parasols and curtains. They close off their houses during the daytime in summer with outside shutters, and doors and windows are closed so you keep inside the relatively cold temperature that you have in the evening and at night,” he said.