Just found these 4 clauses that require some thought. Any pointers?
(m) To take up an air con service contract with GAIN CITY (http://www.gaincity.com
" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;) to service once every THREE (3) months. The Landlord shall pay for all necessary repairs and/or replacement of the air-conditioning units or parts subject to paragraph
(n). However, the Landlord shall not be responsible for repairs and/or replacement of the air-conditioning units or parts if the Tenants failed to show proof of regular maintenance contract as stipulated. Under such circumstances, the Tenant shall be fully responsible for the repair and/or replacement of the air-conditioning unit or parts.
(n) To be responsible for all minor repairs / replacements and routine maintenance of the fixtures, fittings, equipment and premises not exceeding S$200.00 per job/repair, per item throughout the term of the said lease. In the event any repair and/or maintenance exceeds S$200.00 per job/repair, per item, then the initial S$200.00 shall be borne by the Tenant and any excess to be borne by the Landlord.
In the event that the Landlord should grant the Tenant an extension of the said term herein then the Landlord and the Tenant shall pay the agency renewal commission
The Tenant and Occupants are required to inform the Landlord of any visitors staying in the house from time to time.
As there is no national or standard template TA, these items might be considered negotiable. Perhaps it is useful to consider the intention vs what is ‘reasonable’ in the legal sense.
Just my 2c...
m) The intention is to ensure that the air-con is routinely maintained, via regular servicing. What is reasonable is that when you eventually come to vacate the premises, the premises are ‘yielded up in the same condition as that taken, excepting fair wear and tear’. So, if you don’t intend to use the air-con why have it serviced, when it is it’s condition at the point of departure that counts? We’ve had this clause before, and IMO it stinks. a) It not beyond the bounds of possibility that the agent garners a commission from their stipulated contractor. In ‘the West’ they would have to declare a direct financial interest in so doing, but not here. What ‘might’ be somewhat more reasonable, is that it is routinely serviced by an ‘accredited air-con contractor’. I.e. one of your choosing. In our current place we have a similar clause, though no contractor is named. We still had an argument with our agent about not getting a service contract and sending them a copy. Or in fact as I recall we did get one the first year, after constant hassling from the agent, but then come the renewal/anniversary I declined to renew it, citing the above grounds. The agent (a distant relative no less!) very very grudgingly accepted that, but the argument was apparently non-standard enough, that she is still not talking to me.
So you might ask why you can’t use a contractor of your choosing. Or why the need for ongoing servicing when you have no intention to use it, and that only the condition at your departure should count.
n1) Make sure you get a copy of a recent 100% clean bill of health on the air-con before you sign up to this TA!
In our case we now have no contract, but before we depart we will have a one off service carried out and documented. This costs more (on a per visit basis) than a contract would, but IME less than a contract would cost over the term of a typical TA. It also means I don’t have to sit around at home 4* a year for ‘anytime between 8-7’ appointments.
n2) The intention is to dissuade you from calling a contractor at the LLs expense for even the most trivial matter down to changing a lightbulb. We have a similar clause, with an excess of $150. In our previous place it was set at $50. The end result is that to date I do all said minor repairs myself. Now I might not always do them as well as a ‘professional’ could, but that’s just tough on the LL; that is the direct result of his clause. It’s perverse really, it directly penalises the tenant for seeking to ensure the fixtures and fittings are maintained in the condition received. And you have to consider that if say a property
is let with a brand new fridge, then you have a right to expect that fridge to remain functioning throughout your tenancy. It might suffer from inevitable wear and tear, but the landlord is required to ensure that it still meets it’s function. But LLs and their agents in SG don’t seem to see it like that.
[o]On what basis? The agent didn’t facilitate any decision to continue occupation of the premises (unless you used them to negotiate a re-setting of rent, and/or new tenancy). In the absence of the latter, and/or the LL chucking you out, the TA automatically ‘rolls over’ and forms a Periodic Statutory Tenancy, i.e. it becomes a rolling one, a month-to-month contract, with precisely the same terms as the original. That does not equate to ‘granting an extension’ it happens all on it’s own simply by staying there, and doing precisely nothing. In fact you can roll onto a month-to-month PST, AND negotiate a rate hike (it never seems to drop, unless you want to make some enemies along the way (IME it seems lol)). I’ve done it before, and might have to set about doing it again shortly.
[p]The intention is to stop you turning the place into a short-stay hotel or similar. That requirement is already covered by either HDB rules, or condo
T&Cs, which ever applies, which are usually expressly referred to as being incorporated into the terms of the TA, within the TA. The requirement and wording are perverse. Is a friend dropping by for an evening ‘staying’, well, technically yes they are, so must you call the agent? How about said friend who drops by has a couple of beers and asks if he can crash on the couch that night? Are you meant to SMS the agent at 2am to notify them? The inevitable clause requiring that you don’t sub-let the unit, or rooms therein, would seem to adequately cover what is reasonable to expect of you, and again that comes already within HDB and condo
I’d even question what the legal definition of ‘from time to time’ means, since it’s by no means clear to me...
I hope the above gives you some food for thought. In the absence of a template TA many LLs and their agents will try and protect their interests more than is reasonable. Let us know how you get on, and good luck.
p.s. Make damned sure when you have the check-in inventory done that you check the premises and note condition down to every cracked tile and faulty cupboard hinge (the agent will HATE you taking the time to do this, but hey 'Well unfortunately your TA requires that I do this, no??'. Then when you've spent a week or two there, note and provide any updated list of defects requiring repair to the LL/agent. It's not unusual that previous tenants have done some bodged DIY themselves (and who can blame them) but you want it all on record.