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Lease cancellation due to unemployment

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stevep1114
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Lease cancellation due to unemployment

Postby stevep1114 » Wed, 13 May 2009 9:24 am

Hi All,

I really need some help with this issue. I entered into a new 2 year lease agreement on our condo about 6 months ago but unfortunately with the downturn in the market, I have been made redundant at my company. I will have to return to my home country soon as I can't find any other suitable employment. I have reviewed the lease agreement and it is a 12 month minimum with a 3 month notice or 3 months in lieu payment.

I know I can just pay that but after paying out taxes for last year and up to this point for this year, I'm not really left with much particularly since the company I worked for didn't offer a very good severance package. I probably wouldn't be able to move back home if I did that.

I was thinking of speaking to the landlord to see if they would be flexible but legally I don't think I have a leg to stand on.

Any ideas or thoughts on what I could do?

evergreen21
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Postby evergreen21 » Wed, 13 May 2009 11:08 am

Hi Steve

we can take up yr lease provided it is within our budget,
we are looking for a 6-months rental.

do let us know what sorts of house/apt/condo you have rite now:

can also call me at 93373080

thanks

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jpatokal
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Postby jpatokal » Wed, 13 May 2009 12:01 pm

Yup, just find a new tenant to take over the lease, most landlords will be fine with it. But if your landlord is so greedy that they refuse and insist on you paying in full, it wouldn't be too wrong morally to just skip town... just don't plan on coming back to Singapore anytime soon.
Vaguely heretical thoughts on travel technology at Gyrovague

louy
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Postby louy » Wed, 13 May 2009 2:07 pm

Think one problem with finding someone to take over the agreement is that rent probably has fallen a bit from the position 6 months ago.

If that is true, some people might find a better place for less money.

quidsin
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Postby quidsin » Wed, 13 May 2009 9:34 pm

You also need to pay the agents fee back to the landlord (pro rata) as your terminating your lease early. E.g. lease = $3,000 / 24 months = 125. 18 months * 125 = $2250 to pay the landlord for agents fee. Add this onto the three months notice as stipulated in the contract and it's a lot of money.

I would therefore stop paying the landlord until he asks for the missing money. At that point, start making arrangements to vanish into thin air, he'll be left with some of the deposit which isn't unreasonable, considering most other countries only require a months money upfront and he'll have this at the very least. Beware of the tight fisted Singaporean landlord.

aussie80
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Postby aussie80 » Thu, 14 May 2009 1:36 am

Hey - I have been through two rounds of layoffs so far in Singapore (and survived), so I've looked into this.

I know most people will preach at you about honoring your lease but lease agreements here in Singapore are pretty unreasonable. The standard (although unwritten) practice is just to forfeit the deposit and leave the property as soon as possible so the landlord can find a replacement, speak to your landlord and he/she should be amenable to this.

Worst case you just leave town and email your landlord saying you've vacated. They get to keep your sizable deposit and you don't have to pay rent on a place you aren't occupying to pad the pockets of some greedy so and so.

stevep1114
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Postby stevep1114 » Thu, 14 May 2009 10:23 am

All,

Thanks for the advice. Although, I am not one that likes to be dishonorable, I don't think I have much choice in this situation. In a place where the country motto is Caveat Emptor, my options are limited at this point.

Thanks for replying!

bostonT2
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Postby bostonT2 » Thu, 14 May 2009 11:37 am

folks,
i'm in a similar situation but i've lived in my place for 15 months. Spoke to the landlord and he wants me to find a tenant or pay out the rest of the lease. Also i lose the deposit.

I live next to sim lim and its a 1 bed (or studio as you guys call it). 700sf i think.

What should i do?

Any help is much appreciated as well.
semi lost in translation...

stevep1114
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Postby stevep1114 » Thu, 14 May 2009 11:40 am

Doesn't your contract have a diplomatic clause? In my case, I've only been here 6 months so I have no stand but after 15 months, I would think you could get out of it.

bostonT2
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Postby bostonT2 » Thu, 14 May 2009 12:13 pm

have to check...thanks
semi lost in translation...

stevep1114
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Postby stevep1114 » Thu, 14 May 2009 12:21 pm

I have heard that it is fairly standard practice for a diplomatic clause to be inserted. Most info I have read so far says that the minimum is 1 year you have to stay there and if you give your notice, you should get your deposit back. Only thing is as someone else said on this thread, you may have to pay back some of the agents fee.

Good luck!

aussie80
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Postby aussie80 » Thu, 14 May 2009 6:35 pm

Hey Boston, as Steve said - check for a diplomatic escape clause in your lease. Your landlord is being entirely unreasonable and can't expect you to pay out seven months rent on an unoccupied property. You will also find it extremely difficult to find a tenant who is willing to rent at the prices you're paying since the bottom has fallen out of the rental market.

The deposit is just that; insurance against you defaulting on your contractual obligations as a tenant. Two months rent is more than fair compensation, it will cover the agents fee as well as another month of rent on top of the one you pay before you leave.

If all else fails your landlord can't get blood out of a stone. I agree that it is dishonorable to default on your lease, however it is also dishonorable for your landlord to financially hold you hostage when you're out of a job. As I said, the deposit is more than fair compensation. Don't let your landlord bully you.


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