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Overpaid LL in last TA. How can money be recovered?

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pp25
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Overpaid LL in last TA. How can money be recovered?

Postby pp25 » Fri, 16 May 2014 12:34 am

Hi

Havent seen any post relating to my query hence posting a new one. We have been living in the same condo for the last 5 years and only recently renewed the TA. Relations with LL have been good all this while.

The previous TA was between my husband and the LL. The new TA is between me and the LL.

When reconciling the payments for late year, I realised by husband overpaid the LL by 3 months (about $15k). My husband sent him an email asking him to discuss but he hasnt replied to it.

Has anyone been in a smiliar situation? How can the money be recovered?

Thank you!

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Postby zzm9980 » Fri, 16 May 2014 1:51 am

I assume you and the husband are married still and both live there. If you have a new TA with him, why not just inform him that you're going to use that overpayment as credit and hold money back until you're balanced out?

Must be nice to have such a healthy cash flow that you don't notice an $15k is missing :D

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Postby pp25 » Fri, 16 May 2014 8:27 am

Hahaha..things were ok till we realised how much we have overpaid him!

LL is going into legal technicalities and saying the old TA was with husband, and new TA is with me, so I need to pay him as per the contract. I asked him if it could be adjusted against the next few months rest, and he has refused :(

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Postby ScoobyDoes » Fri, 16 May 2014 9:03 am

pp25 wrote:Hahaha..things were ok till we realised how much we have overpaid him!

LL is going into legal technicalities and saying the old TA was with husband, and new TA is with me, so I need to pay him as per the contract. I asked him if it could be adjusted against the next few months rest, and he has refused :(



Walk away.

If the LL is going into 'legal technicalities' and saying you 'need to pay as per contract' remind him he then has a legal right to refund monies sent in error under the previous contract. Anything else is theft.

Throw the words 'Small Claims Court' at him and he'll probably wilt like a wet sheet of A4.
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Postby JR8 » Fri, 16 May 2014 9:06 am

pp25 wrote:Hahaha..things were ok till we realised how much we have overpaid him!
LL is going into legal technicalities and saying the old TA was with husband, and new TA is with me, so I need to pay him as per the contract. I asked him if it could be adjusted against the next few months rest, and he has refused :(


Well it's not the landlords money. So he's being quite the chancer. Perhaps he needs a slap back into reality.

So either he refunds it to your husband within 28 days, or allows you to offset it from current rent, or you take him to the Small Claims Court.

I'd do that. Ask him which he favours, outright refund or offset from current rent. And give him 28 days to reply. If he doesn't reply in a way that creates resolution, write again, give him another 7 days to agree to either, and say if no reply received, you will take him to the Small Claims Court.

If needs be take him to the Small Claims Court. Your case seems about as black and white as I could imagine.

[ If you do so, you can be sure he's going to try and subsequently withold all your deposit when you come to leave. So ... consider how to potentially mitigate that nearer the time ].


p.s. As a landlord I've had this happen a few of times, though not on this scale. In early days I'd leave the excess in my account and wait for the tenant to contact me. As I recall they always do at some point, eventually. When they do, it just makes you (the LL) fit the stereotype of being a 'thieving rapacious bastard'. It's not good for the relationship with the tenant. So nowadays if I get double rent, I tell the tenant and refund it ASAP. I wasn't going to get to keep it, so no matter. Plus the tenant is like 'Wow, my landlord is SO honest!', [that the next time you review the rent up 10% they'll assume you're being fair /jk ;), alas memories of such goodwill are pretty short)

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Postby Beeroclock » Fri, 16 May 2014 9:39 am

JR8 wrote:
pp25 wrote:Hahaha..things were ok till we realised how much we have overpaid him!
LL is going into legal technicalities and saying the old TA was with husband, and new TA is with me, so I need to pay him as per the contract. I asked him if it could be adjusted against the next few months rest, and he has refused :(


Well it's not the landlords money. So he's being quite the chancer. Perhaps he needs a slap back into reality.

So either he refunds it to your husband within 28 days, or allows you to offset it from current rent, or you take him to the Small Claims Court.

I'd do that. Ask him which he favours, outright refund or offset from current rent. And give him 28 days to reply. If he doesn't reply in a way that creates resolution, write again, give him another 7 days to agree to either, and say if no reply received, you will take him to the Small Claims Court.

If needs be take him to the Small Claims Court. Your case seems about as black and white as I could imagine.

[ If you do so, you can be sure he's going to try and subsequently withold all your deposit when you come to leave. So ... consider how to potentially mitigate that nearer the time ].


p.s. As a landlord I've had this happen a few of times, though not on this scale. In early days I'd leave the excess in my account and wait for the tenant to contact me. As I recall they always do at some point, eventually. When they do, it just makes you (the LL) fit the stereotype of being a 'thieving rapacious bastard'. It's not good for the relationship with the tenant. So nowadays if I get double rent, I tell the tenant and refund it ASAP. I wasn't going to get to keep it, so no matter. Plus the tenant is like 'Wow, my landlord is SO honest!', [that the next time you review the rent up 10% they'll assume you're being fair /jk ;), alas memories of such goodwill are pretty short)
I agree, you should put this demand in writing if you haven't already. After the reasonable period for refund eg 28 days, mention that you will take legal action to recover this and all additional costs including interest, if he fails to repay you.

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Postby Max Headroom » Fri, 16 May 2014 9:45 am

Actually, Small Claims only go up to 10K and cutting your amount down to fit isn't permitted. However the max can be raised to 20K if both parties agree in writing.

So it looks like this is going to have to be a proper court case. Except it won't, because your LL will return the funds (after sitting on it for an amount of time deemed appropriate by said LL).

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Postby JR8 » Fri, 16 May 2014 10:07 am

Thanks for clarifying, I'd forgotten the threshold was quite that low.

That said I still think the suggested course of action is worth at least threatening -
- He might not know the threshold rules either
- Either way it clearly demonstrates 'intent'.

If no joy, take him to court. The matter seems so simple you could do your own submission, and represent yourself very easily... if it came to it.

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Postby pp25 » Fri, 16 May 2014 10:23 am

Wow! Thats a tonne of advice and very helpful.

I just heard from him, and he said my husband had agreed to pay a certain amount for everyday he was late. Its a ridiculous amount, and I know it was extremely silly on my husbands part to make that agreement. Even with that calculation and if we honor his word (though the late fees as per contract are pittance compared to this), we seem to have overpaid him by about $14K.

LL has suddenly decided to reduce rent out of goodwill, though I never asked for it. This amounts to about $5k.

We should still try and get everything back right? Was just reading the following link (Sections 3-1 and 4), and he seems to have voilated the statute
http://statutes.agc.gov.sg/aol/search/d ... %3A0;rec=0

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Postby JR8 » Fri, 16 May 2014 10:41 am

pp25 wrote:Wow! Thats a tonne of advice and very helpful.
I just heard from him, and he said my husband had agreed to pay a certain amount for everyday he was late. Its a ridiculous amount, and I know it was extremely silly on my husbands part to make that agreement. Even with that calculation and if we honor his word (though the late fees as per contract are pittance compared to this), we seem to have overpaid him by about $14K.

LL has suddenly decided to reduce rent out of goodwill, though I never asked for it. This amounts to about $5k.

We should still try and get everything back right? Was just reading the following link (Sections 3-1 and 4), and he seems to have voilated the statute
http://statutes.agc.gov.sg/aol/search/d ... %3A0;rec=0


How late was the rent? How much did he pay? Was this agreed with the landlord? This muddies the waters...

The landlord offering to lower your rent doesn't stop him chucking you out in due course, and then keeping your depo. Reducing your rent would not be 'goodwill', it would be rebating what you've overpaid, and then only partially.

He's playing games, you're due $15k, and he offers to settle for $4k... phhh. But on the plus side you have him engaged in a discussion. And he's demonstrated he knows he's in debt to you (good evidence in court).

He knows he's in a hole, and hopes you'll take 4/15ths what's due. I'd never accept that, in something SO clear-cut... but over to you.

p.s. Your husband is paying 'fees' to the LL, for paying rent late, and at the same time paying the LL double the rent due? :o :???: If the rent a/c was in credit, then none of these 'fees' were due anyway...

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Postby ScoobyDoes » Fri, 16 May 2014 10:43 am

pp25 wrote:Wow! Thats a tonne of advice and very helpful.

I just heard from him, and he said my husband had agreed to pay a certain amount for everyday he was late. Its a ridiculous amount, and I know it was extremely silly on my husbands part to make that agreement. Even with that calculation and if we honor his word (though the late fees as per contract are pittance compared to this), we seem to have overpaid him by about $14K.

LL has suddenly decided to reduce rent out of goodwill, though I never asked for it. This amounts to about $5k.

We should still try and get everything back right? Was just reading the following link (Sections 3-1 and 4), and he seems to have voilated the statute
http://statutes.agc.gov.sg/aol/search/d ... %3A0;rec=0



Late Fees.......that's a new one, I've never had anything like that before.

Yes, try to get EVERYTHING back, don't leave him S$9k to the good.

It's not 'goodwill' that made him reduce the rent;
a) He knows rents are coming down at the moment anyway.
b) He doesn't want to see you look elsewhere (which I suggest you do anyway) to maybe see what your neighbours are paying or other condos.
c) He thinks to himself he has a very easy tenant and would never want to let a fish like that get away.
'When Lewis Hamilton wins a race he has to thank Vodafone whereas in my day I used to chase the crumpet. I know which era I'd rather race in.'



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Postby taxico » Fri, 16 May 2014 10:57 am

i've had tenants who have been late... very late... (like 3-6months) i've never charged them late fees although many times my wife feels i should have.

as much as i want them all to pay on time, what's the point of destroying the relationship over a few bucks? (especially if it was a genuine unforeseen cashflow problem) it gets wiped out if the tenant moves out and the place sits for a month or two... or three (and then there's the agent's commission).

your landlord is a thievin dog and you MUST get all the money back even if you have to spend a few thousand dollars on a lawyer.
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Postby pp25 » Fri, 16 May 2014 11:18 am

Thanks all. Just a little bit more clarity in the situation, now that I understand it.

My husband was late in paying 2 months' rent last year. The landlord has either not kept track of all the other payments, or just wanted to take advantage. For the 2 months when we were late, the late fee amounts to $75, as per the contract. If we go by my husband's word to him, the late fee is approximately $2k - still leaving $14k extra.

I have payment records of all the transfers made to him, and the dates the payment was made on.

Yes its good he has come to a discussion point. Maybe the best move right now is to start that discussion with him? And then take things forward based on what he says/agrees on?

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Postby JR8 » Fri, 16 May 2014 11:28 am

taxico wrote:your landlord is a thievin dog and you MUST get all the money back even if you have to spend a few thousand dollars on a lawyer.


If you have to use a lawyer, make a parallel claim for costs. Costs are usually awarded the same way as the judgment. Simples.

[This assumes 'proper court', rather than 'Smalls Claims Court']


p.s.
@ PP25. Before you do anything, you need to be completely clear on the facts of the matter. What does it mean- roughly- 'late fee was $75, but my husband paid $2000'? - What is going on?

Imagine I'm the judge hearing your evidence (really consider it that way) ... it's like a flock of seagulls, I have no idea what's going on.

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Postby pp25 » Fri, 16 May 2014 11:36 am

Thanks JR8. What that basically means is based on the TA, the late fees are calculated at 10% per annum. Husband was late on 2 occasions - once by 30 odd days and another time by 20 odd days. That calculation leads to $75.

If we go by what my husband told him, without the LL asking for it, the late fees amounts to approximately $2k.

Thinking the next step is to speak with the landlord and see what he says., Will keep you posted on what happens.

Thanks again everyone for your advice!

[quote="JR8"][quote="taxico"]your landlord is a thievin dog and you MUST get all the money back even if you have to spend a few thousand dollars on a lawyer.[/quote]

If you have to use a lawyer, make a parallel claim for costs. Costs are usually awarded the same way as the judgment. Simples.

[This assumes 'proper court', rather than 'Smalls Claims Court']


p.s.
@ PP25. Before you do anything, you need to be completely clear on the facts of the matter. What does it mean- roughly- 'late fee was $75, but my husband paid $2000'? - What is going on?

Imagine I'm the judge hearing your evidence (really consider it that way) ... it's like a flock of seagulls, I have no idea what's going on.[/quote]


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