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Cutting out the middleman: renting directly from the landlord

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cattleherder
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Cutting out the middleman: renting directly from the landlord

Postby cattleherder » Thu, 07 Sep 2017 10:27 am

We just landed a few days ago, currently looking for a place to live, and visited a handful of condos and an HDB apartment.

A person behind one of the listings got back to me offering to view the condo. He also told me that there is no agent, he is the landlord and it'll be directly with him. He said it as if it were an advantage (I imagine we don't have to pay agent fees).

The listing looked fine, exactly the same price range as the rest (and a condo I did want), and he sounded normal, not very different from the agents I spoke to.

I am thinking though, is it worth it? Are there any caveats?

If something breaks down, I'd normally rely on an agent to resolve the situation. How will it work with a landlord?

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ecureilx
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Re: Cutting out the middleman: renting directly from the landlord

Postby ecureilx » Thu, 07 Sep 2017 1:31 pm

cattleherder wrote:We just landed a few days ago, currently looking for a place to live, and visited a handful of condos and an HDB apartment.

A person behind one of the listings got back to me offering to view the condo. He also told me that there is no agent, he is the landlord and it'll be directly with him. He said it as if it were an advantage (I imagine we don't have to pay agent fees).

The listing looked fine, exactly the same price range as the rest (and a condo I did want), and he sounded normal, not very different from the agents I spoke to.

I am thinking though, is it worth it? Are there any caveats?

If something breaks down, I'd normally rely on an agent to resolve the situation. How will it work with a landlord?


Caveats ? None.

As long as the LL knows what he is doing, is free to handle your grouses, doesnt get pushy with LOI, deposit etc, why fret ?

just make sure he is the LL !! Though rare, there have been scams of folks pretending to be a LL !

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Re: Cutting out the middleman: renting directly from the landlord

Postby cattleherder » Thu, 07 Sep 2017 4:59 pm

ecureilx wrote:Caveats ? None.

As long as the LL knows what he is doing, is free to handle your grouses, doesnt get pushy with LOI, deposit etc, why fret ?

just make sure he is the LL !! Though rare, there have been scams of folks pretending to be a LL !

Great, thank you!

Is there a registry where I can run a check? Theoretically, he can be a condo employee who got into an empty apartment and put some furniture there :) .

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ecureilx
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Re: Cutting out the middleman: renting directly from the landlord

Postby ecureilx » Thu, 07 Sep 2017 7:33 pm

cattleherder wrote:
ecureilx wrote:Caveats ? None.

As long as the LL knows what he is doing, is free to handle your grouses, doesnt get pushy with LOI, deposit etc, why fret ?

just make sure he is the LL !! Though rare, there have been scams of folks pretending to be a LL !

Great, thank you!

Is there a registry where I can run a check? Theoretically, he can be a condo employee who got into an empty apartment and put some furniture there :) .
You can get his IC no.

And URA has some system to check but I know not how.

A property lawyer can verify for a small fee on the Law Net

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Re: Cutting out the middleman: renting directly from the landlord

Postby taxico » Fri, 08 Sep 2017 7:07 pm

ask to sight the property tax bill and his ID.

don't deal directly with the LL unless you know your schizz.

AND... don't sign the TA until it is fully satisfactory to you.

ask for a soft word copy to review. amend as you wish, send it back.

when all parties are happy... YOU print it and provide the TA. don't let the LL do it.

if in doubt, walk away.
Aut viam ad caelum inveniam aut faciam

cattleherder
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Re: Cutting out the middleman: renting directly from the landlord

Postby cattleherder » Fri, 08 Sep 2017 7:09 pm

Thanks both.

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Re: Cutting out the middleman: renting directly from the landlord

Postby Strong Eagle » Sat, 09 Sep 2017 12:16 am

I've dealt directly with my landlord(s). The wife was a lawyer and something of a pain, the husband much easier to deal with.

The key to me, is the TA, appliances, and maintenance costs. For example, the people who were leaving noted that the upstairs toilet would probably require work so we added a clause that we would pay a max of $150 for a first instance but after that the LL would pick up charges. We also got a new dryer as part of the move in.

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Re: Cutting out the middleman: renting directly from the landlord

Postby x9200 » Sat, 09 Sep 2017 7:03 am

cattleherder wrote:We just landed a few days ago, currently looking for a place to live, and visited a handful of condos and an HDB apartment.

A person behind one of the listings got back to me offering to view the condo. He also told me that there is no agent, he is the landlord and it'll be directly with him. He said it as if it were an advantage (I imagine we don't have to pay agent fees).

The listing looked fine, exactly the same price range as the rest (and a condo I did want), and he sounded normal, not very different from the agents I spoke to.

I am thinking though, is it worth it? Are there any caveats?

If something breaks down, I'd normally rely on an agent to resolve the situation. How will it work with a landlord?

The difference between dealing directly with a LL and via an agents is, that in the first case you have to fully understand the TA, all the clauses, consequences, rights etc etc. and that you are the only person responsible for what you sign.

If you have an agent, a part of this responsibility is shifted to him or her. The agent supposed to know the legal side of the TA (normally not the case anyway) and if you incur some loses because of his incompetence, you can always sue him and try to recover what you lost. The later may or may not work depending on the specific cases and going legal is at best huge waste of your time, and often also money.

In my experience even the best local agents don't know and don't care. They will only go via what they call "standard clauses" and not analyze the contract against all its pitfalls or even completely obvious dangers. In other words, you have to analyze it anyway. The only practical role of the agents is to be your executive assistant to arrange the viewings, give you a lift, send correspondence, deal with the LL. It is not worth to hire them if you can handle the TA by yourself unless you don't need to pay them for their services.

Repairs and such. It is assumed they are the responsibility of the LL, so you just inform him or her something got broken, let him arrange the repair (or do it by yourself if you are willing) and pay what you agreed in TA.

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Re: Cutting out the middleman: renting directly from the landlord

Postby ecureilx » Sat, 09 Sep 2017 9:06 am

x9200 wrote:If you have an agent, a part of this responsibility is shifted to him or her. The agent supposed to know the legal side of the TA (normally not the case anyway) and if you incur some loses because of his incompetence, you can always sue him and try to recover what you lost. The later may or may not work depending on the specific cases and going legal is at best huge waste of your time, and often also money.

In my experience even the best local agents don't know and don't care. They will only go via what they call "standard clauses" and not analyze the contract against all its pitfalls or even completely obvious dangers. In other words, you have to analyze it anyway. The only practical role of the agents is to be your executive assistant to arrange the viewings, give you a lift, send correspondence, deal with the LL. It is not worth to hire them if you can handle the TA by yourself unless you don't need to pay them for their services.


+1

DannyGShields
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Re: Cutting out the middleman: renting directly from the landlord

Postby DannyGShields » Wed, 13 Sep 2017 1:51 pm

True! I agree.


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