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Renting from overseas

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mojipei
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Renting from overseas

Post by mojipei » Sat, 19 May 2018 5:43 pm

I want to ask the experts here on the procedures for a foreigner renting a unit from overseas.

My friend in Hong Kong is coming to Singapore, how can he rent a property in advance. What are the steps involved. He cannot sign any documents while in Hong Kong and cannot view the flat here. He has not way to tell if the rental is reasonable. He asked me thinking that I know everything, but unfortunately, I myself do not have to rent a flat, :)

Any help are welcome.

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Strong Eagle
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Re: Renting from overseas

Post by Strong Eagle » Sat, 19 May 2018 9:38 pm

He needs to have a trustworthy agent in Singapore to view the flat, otherwise he will be scammed.

mojipei
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Re: Renting from overseas

Post by mojipei » Sat, 19 May 2018 9:45 pm

Thank you for the reply. The word "trustworthy" is the problem. I can help him to monitor the situation, help him to look at the flat, etc. However, when it comes to LOI and TA, I cannot help him to sign, and I doubt if the owner will agree to it as well. Is it a practice that they will scan and send the documents overseas? However, is it legally recognized if there is a dispute.

I believe there are plenty of these cases, can any one give me an advise?

Thank you

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Re: Renting from overseas

Post by The Ref » Sun, 20 May 2018 4:55 pm

I would say all challenges can be overcome, and as long as he has a legal right to live and rent here (a pass at minimum LTVP) then all obstacle can be sorted.

The main question is why would you want to?

Spending a few weeks in an AirBnB looking for a place that suits your needs, where the location is good and where the photos match the actual unit would be more important. You can always offer a lower than asking rate which would more than save the AirBnB cost over the rental. You can negotiate to have the unit cleaned or something replaced, you can document anything faulty so you don't have to pay for it on the way out, etc.

And to see if the rental is reasonable, google URA rental condo history and see the actual transaction prices not the asking price.
https://www.ura.gov.sg/realEstateIIWeb/ ... rch.action

mojipei
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Re: Renting from overseas

Post by mojipei » Tue, 22 May 2018 6:11 pm

He got the housing allowance from the Company, AirBNB may not be the best choice.

My point is more on the detail procedure. If you have done it before, how was it? When the agent ask you to sign on a scanned copy of the LOI and TA, do you sign it? If you sign and the landlord go back on his word, can you bring him to court? Or if the flat was not the same as your expectation, do you still stay and bear with it or argue with the landlord with the photos that your agent send to you?

Nowadays, we are using scanned copies, whatsapp messages to convey our messages, I am just wondering do they have any legal binding.

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Re: Renting from overseas

Post by Strong Eagle » Tue, 22 May 2018 8:04 pm

Ultimately, the only contract that matters is the tenancy agreement... the only document really enforceable in court. All the other documents are "understandings" only.

Legal documents are regularly executed remotely. You sign with a notary or commissioner of oaths present who attests that the person signing really is who he says he is. So does the other party. Because you are renting in Singapore, the TA would be enforceable in Singapore courts.

Far more important is finding a trustworthy agent and landlord. All the paper in the world, signed or not, is worth nothing if you end up with a landlord trying to screw you. You will probably have your best shot working with an agent/landlord who deals with expats being transferred in by MNC's... they know how these things work.

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Re: Renting from overseas

Post by JustSee » Wed, 30 May 2018 5:54 pm

Tell him to catch a budget flight for the weekend and he can do the search then, 2-3 trips and he can find a good place and get a feeling of the agent, on top of that he can search . or any other listing site to get a feel of the prices and compare it with URA as mentioned above.

Before i arrived here i got a number of an agent from HR and lined up several apartments, when I first arrived, I stayed at a hotel for 3-4 days, presented the visa letter to the owners agent and we signed the docs.

He needs to take his time learning about the neighbourhoods and the prices, he can sign a one year lease and towards the end of the lease start looking around personally.

all the best.


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mojipei
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Re: Renting from overseas

Post by mojipei » Sat, 30 Jun 2018 10:29 am

Thank you for all your advice. He signed on a scanned copy of the Tenancy Agreement but the agent told him that he can move in straight from the airport. Upon arrival at the rental unit, both he and the landlord signed the final TA. The only issue I can see is if the landlord back out and he will end up with no where to stay upon arrival. Just see how it goes.

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