Experience with difficult landlords and how you resolve

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geneva99
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Experience with difficult landlords and how you resolve

Post by geneva99 » Sun, 31 Jul 2005 11:07 pm

Hi

I'm new here and am renting. I don't know all the laws here but better safe than sorry. Some expats have told me horrible stories on how they are being abused by their landlords who shamelessly pockets the rent money but does not respect the terms of the TA and seems untouchable, so I'm not too reassured.

I was wondering if any of you had problems with their landlords and how the situation was resolved.

Is the law here more in favour of the landlord or the tenant.
Is there a good website with good tips (apart from standard tenancy agreements)
How do you defend yourself when the landlord doesn't respect the TA
In case of conflict who do you turn to for (cheap) legal advice?
etc....

I'm doing fine so far but would appreciate your feedback and any useful info. Thanks!

Singapore Property Search

 

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Experience with difficult landlords and how you resolve

Post by Guest » Wed, 31 Aug 2005 5:41 pm

Trust me man.
Its really biased in favour of Landlords.

Take a trip to following example.

Tenant and Landlord make contract of 6 months. One month rent is paid as deposit and first months rent is paid in advance.
Thereafter rent for all subsequent months is paid on time.
When it comes to end of contract after 6 months, owner refuses to give back deposit on some pretext or the other.

This story (with variations in durations and excuses offered by owners) is same at numerous places.

Housing agent would not be too keen to interfere. His/her reasoning:- agents work is limited to finding the proper house and until the contract is signed. Thereafter its between owner and tenant and the relationship how they maintain.

So.. what does the tenant do....

Approaches police on the last day of contract when owner refuses to give money but asks for the keys.

Police point out the "clause" in contract which says deposit has to be returned within 3 days. So.. Owner still has couple of days to pay the tenant back, but tenant has to hand over keys back as the duration has ended.

Later on owner refuses to attend tenant's phone call. and flatly refuses to pay money back..

So.. now what does tenant do..

He reports to police station.

Officer-in-charge listens and "promises" to look into it .

Later he says that this is not criminal offence and just breach of agreement, hence move ahead by lodging claim in "small claims tribunal" and police cannot do anything about this.

It can take more money for proceeding on this path than your deposit.

Moral of the story...

1. dont pay last months rent. Make sure, you can manage to threats abuses, and what nots during thislast month.
2. Dont trust agents, ask them to make contract crystal clear.
3. Keep electricity, water supply, telephone bills on hold, and let that be deducted from deposit.

Now, how do you think I managed to write such long story.

I lived in that story and am still in process of getting back my deposit.

The attitude shown here about resolving this matter is depressing.

So be warned.

Any advice which could help me resolve this, would be most welcome.

Thanks

Guest

Re: Experience with difficult landlords and how you resolve

Post by Guest » Wed, 31 Aug 2005 6:25 pm

Anonymous wrote:Trust me man.
Its really biased in favour of Landlords.

Take a trip to following example.

Tenant and Landlord make contract of 6 months. One month rent is paid as deposit and first months rent is paid in advance.
Thereafter rent for all subsequent months is paid on time.
When it comes to end of contract after 6 months, owner refuses to give back deposit on some pretext or the other.

It is written in the tenancy agreement how long the deposit would be witheld for, please note that deposits need not necessarily be returned on the day of handover as Landlords need to ascertain any damagaes to fixtures and appliances.

This story (with variations in durations and excuses offered by owners) is same at numerous places. Do not base on your own past experiences to generalise situations.

Housing agent would not be too keen to interfere. His/her reasoning:- agents work is limited to finding the proper house and until the contract is signed. Thereafter its between owner and tenant and the relationship how they maintain. Who says so? It's the agents obligation to follow-up when necessary.

So.. what does the tenant do....

Approaches police on the last day of contract when owner refuses to give money but asks for the keys.

Police point out the "clause" in contract which says deposit has to be returned within 3 days. So.. Owner still has couple of days to pay the tenant back, but tenant has to hand over keys back as the duration has ended.

Later on owner refuses to attend tenant's phone call. and flatly refuses to pay money back..

Then your description is that the Landlord is a cheat, not all people are dishonourable. Clauses are clearly written on the TAs.

So.. now what does tenant do..

He reports to police station.

Officer-in-charge listens and "promises" to look into it .

Later he says that this is not criminal offence and just breach of agreement, hence move ahead by lodging claim in "small claims tribunal" and police cannot do anything about this.

It can take more money for proceeding on this path than your deposit.

Moral of the story...

1. dont pay last months rent. Make sure, you can manage to threats abuses, and what nots during thislast month.

Tenancy agreement will state that the deposit cannot be deducted as rental payment. It is used to assess damages and repairs needed for the property.

2. Dont trust agents, ask them to make contract crystal clear.

Your agent is probably a fly-by night agent.

3. Keep electricity, water supply, telephone bills on hold, and let that be deducted from deposit.

You can do so, but you can't put payments on hold as SINGTEL will just cut your lines off and SP SERVICES will terminate your utilities, so you can walk around your house with candles and tell your neighbours it's romantic this way. You can also go to the nearby coffeeshop to take your bathe. :cool:

Now, how do you think I managed to write such long story.

I lived in that story and am still in process of getting back my deposit.

The attitude shown here about resolving this matter is depressing.

So be warned.

Any advice which could help me resolve this, would be most welcome.

END :P

Thanks
Please see my replies to your answers in bold, as I felt your views are very slighted and thus will mislead others. :mad:

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geneva99
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Post by geneva99 » Wed, 31 Aug 2005 6:26 pm

Hi guest

Thank you for your input.

In fact, you would not believe what is happening to us now. The landlord is in over her head, has abused the contract, is in breach in several points and still refuses to financially compensate. She has offered deck chairs in compensation... what a joke! She is testing our limits to see if we will bring her to justice but we hesitate as it will put a very black mark on our record with the authorities here. On the other hand, we are considering stopping paying rent until SHE brings us to justice and spends the money. However, we have been advised by LAWYERS that she, being singaporean, is most likely to win, regardless of all the obvious evidence we have. Go figure!

This landlord has really made us feel unwelcome in Singapore as she was our first contact here (apart from our colleagues at work). She is greedy and mean. All we want now is to leave this country although we have had very good contact with many locals, this one was just too much to bear.

My email is in my profile if you want to share more, union of forces is always good.

Guest

situation

Post by Guest » Wed, 31 Aug 2005 6:29 pm

geneva

What's the actual situation like..?

Guest

Post by Guest » Thu, 01 Sep 2005 11:09 am

Trust me man.
Its really biased in favour of Landlords.

Take a trip to following example.

Tenant and Landlord make contract of 6 months. One month rent is paid as deposit and first months rent is paid in advance.
Thereafter rent for all subsequent months is paid on time.
When it comes to end of contract after 6 months, owner refuses to give back deposit on some pretext or the other.
-----
It is written in the tenancy agreement how long the deposit would be witheld for, please note that deposits need not necessarily be returned on the day of handover as Landlords need to ascertain any damagaes to fixtures and appliances.
------
>> Please read complete mail before writing. I had mentioned that contract says it has to be returned within 3 days.<<

This story (with variations in durations and excuses offered by owners) is same at numerous places.
---
Do not base on your own past experiences to generalise situations.
----
>>Its nevessary to understand that facts are presented here in forum to avoid other expats to go through waht some of them have through. Whether the attempt was to generalise is toally upto the readers judgement. The point here is that there are many greedy owners here who do such things and who have been emboldened by both lack of proper channel for tenants to get justice and also by the ignorance of tenants. this post was to remove atleast the latter hurdle. <<

Housing agent would not be too keen to interfere. His/her reasoning:- agents work is limited to finding the proper house and until the contract is signed. Thereafter its between owner and tenant and the relationship how they maintain.
---
Who says so? It's the agents obligation to follow-up when necessary.
---
>> So here even the agents take easy way out, at the expense of tenant.<<

So.. what does the tenant do....

Approaches police on the last day of contract when owner refuses to give money but asks for the keys.

Police point out the "clause" in contract which says deposit has to be returned within 3 days. So.. Owner still has couple of days to pay the tenant back, but tenant has to hand over keys back as the duration has ended.

Later on owner refuses to attend tenant's phone call. and flatly refuses to pay money back..
---
Then your description is that the Landlord is a cheat, not all people are dishonourable. Clauses are clearly written on the TAs.
---
>> Research my post again and check whether I had used "all people" anywhere. Dont trivialise the issue by introducing hypothetical perceptions. Also I had used word "numerous" not "all". Clauses are written, true. But many owners get away by breaching them. This a hard fact. Nothing to point towards the general ethics of the communitiy here. It happens everywhere more so in asian countires. But not expected in Singapore which brands itself as developed nation with equal opurtunities, open mind, ... blah.. blah.. blah.. No offence meant. But this is convenient presentation, trying to hide the underlying "dirt" inside. The aim of my post had only to be make tenants aware of the prevalent problem here and prepare himself/herself.<<

So.. now what does tenant do..

He reports to police station.

Officer-in-charge listens and "promises" to look into it .

Later he says that this is not criminal offence and just breach of agreement, hence move ahead by lodging claim in "small claims tribunal" and police cannot do anything about this.

It can take more money for proceeding on this path than your deposit.

Moral of the story...

1. dont pay last months rent. Make sure, you can manage to threats abuses, and what nots during thislast month.
----
Tenancy agreement will state that the deposit cannot be deducted as rental payment. It is used to assess damages and repairs needed for the property.
----

>>Owner should meet the tenant to make claims. Here owner refuses to pick phones, or recognize. Should not the extent of damage etc, be described in detail in contract. 4 Scratches on table out of which 3 were before occupying the tenancy and 1 after... Should it be that detailed. Owner agents refuse to budge around the printed format they already have. I know instances where owners have charged for whole furniturte set to be replaced at tenants expense for some invisible damage. Hello.... but there has to be certain logic and reasoning behind making claims. And there has to be some concious. Morever, whats the gurantee that the owner, who has the keys would not manipulate things in house to his convenience after tenants have stepped out.. Does this damage assesment stands to be fair after tenant has moved out?<<

2. Dont trust agents, ask them to make contract crystal clear.
---
Your agent is probably a fly-by night agent.
---
>> I can safely say that most of the agents are that way. And there is no redressal forum to complaint against them. Atleast not that one I know. Input welcome. Agents usually carry multiple handphoens with numbers withheld. <<

3. Keep electricity, water supply, telephone bills on hold, and let that be deducted from deposit.
---
You can do so, but you can't put payments on hold as SINGTEL will just cut your lines off and SP SERVICES will terminate your utilities, so you can walk around your house with candles and tell your neighbours it's romantic this way. You can also go to the nearby coffeeshop to take your bathe. Cool
----
>> Ur this advice was interesting.. Or should I say imgainative.. But people who are smart enough, including you, understand what I meant by not paying the bills. Dont pay for the last few months. They dont cut it unless it has crossed 3 months. Must admit I was not clear earlier.<<

Now, how do you think I managed to write such long story.

I lived in that story and am still in process of getting back my deposit.

The attitude shown here about resolving this matter is depressing.

So be warned.

Any advice which could help me resolve this, would be most welcome.

>>Its a shame I got some distasteful reasoning here rather than some sincere advice.<<

END Razz
>> Never mind.. Thanks Razz.. Atleast you typed in some thing.<<

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