What are my rights if I did not sign a lease agreement?

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birdie_nerdie
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What are my rights if I did not sign a lease agreement?

Post by birdie_nerdie » Wed, 27 Jul 2011 9:19 pm

So I have been renting a room in a multi-room apartment for a few months. I really do not like it here and am looking to move, with a new place secured.

Only one housemate is on the lease. I never signed a lease or any contract. In fact, when I moved in, the agent told me if I left I had to give two months notice to the lease holder.

I did originally think I would stay here for one year and expressed that via email.

So, I have given more than two months notice of leaving to all parties. I even said I would help to find a new housemate by posting ads, etc. But now the agent says I can only move out if I find a replacement by my move out date. Am I obligated to do this? Or responsible for rent in anyway after I move out?

Just need a little help understanding what I am legally responsible for. Thanks!

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BillyB
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Post by BillyB » Wed, 27 Jul 2011 9:59 pm

No singed tenancy agreement, no obligation on your behalf. Tell the agent to stick his demands up his ar*e and to stop taking the p*ss out of you and taking advantage of your kind nature.

He wants you to do his job for him, and the whole set-up sounds dodgy in the first place. Check his agent number to check if he is actually an approved agent.

Do they have a deposit from you?

birdie_nerdie
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Post by birdie_nerdie » Wed, 27 Jul 2011 10:24 pm

Yes they do have a deposit, for which I have a receipt.

I guess the best thing to do will be to invite the agent over so we can discuss this in person. But I definitely never signed anything. There was never even a formal letter of intent, just an email saying I planned to stay one year.

I think he is legit, but I don't have his agent number :(

I just want to make sure that I am free to move out in two months and they will not be chasing me.

Thanks for your help. I am really new to Singapore so I don't have anyone to ask really, except the forum!

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Post by x9200 » Wed, 27 Jul 2011 10:41 pm

A verbal only or non-formalized lease agreement is valid, but the tricky part is to prove what the parties agreed upon. I think you may have some problems to get back the deposit.
Were any stamp duties paid?

birdie_nerdie
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Post by birdie_nerdie » Wed, 27 Jul 2011 11:01 pm

Yes I did pay a stamp duty. But now I'm not sure what that was for because I never signed any documents.
And I'm not entirely sure what stamp duty really is...

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Post by Mad Scientist » Thu, 28 Jul 2011 4:08 am

I think you talk this kraut before proceeding

Something does not meet the eye

http://www.cea.gov.sg/cea/content/estat ... smain.html
The positive thinker sees the invisible, feels the intangible, and achieves the impossible.Yahoo !!!

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Post by x9200 » Thu, 28 Jul 2011 6:31 am

birdie_nerdie wrote:Yes I did pay a stamp duty. But now I'm not sure what that was for because I never signed any documents.
And I'm not entirely sure what stamp duty really is...
That's very interesting.

Stamp duty is a tax on executed documents relating to properties or interest in properties and shares or interest in shares. Stamp duty is payable only on documents described in the First Schedule to the Stamp Duties Act (Cap 312). These documents include a lease, sale and purchase, gift or mortgage of property. It is not a tax on transactions. If the agreement is verbal and no document is executed (signed) for that agreement, then no stamp duty is payable.
(the above comes from IRAS webpage)

In other words either there is some written TA or whoever you passed you money to just took it.

Here you can check if the agent has the license:
http://www.cea.gov.sg/cea/app/newimplpu ... ister.jspa

birdie_nerdie
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Post by birdie_nerdie » Thu, 28 Jul 2011 9:11 am

Well, he is definitely licensed. Thanks for the website.

I know there is a tenancy agreement, but only one housemate signed it, and that person is not me.
So is that what the stamp duty went to? I guess...

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Post by x9200 » Thu, 28 Jul 2011 9:48 am

Ok, so now as I see your situation probably the agent and the other person (LL or subletting tenant) may claim you were informed about this condition (to find a replacement) but if they are lying I don't think they will be willing to go with the problem to the court. What I think you should do is to deny this condition (so you were told about 2 months notice only) and if they refuse to give you back your deposit threaten to take it to the Small Claims Tribunal and report the agent to CEA for misconduct. It is a very realistic threat as this will cost you hardly any money and you show at the same time that you know how to defend yourself.

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Post by beppi » Sun, 31 Jul 2011 8:26 pm

To add to the recommendations the previous posters gave: Be prepared to forget about your deposit - it will be very hard to impossible to get it back if they don't cooperate.
The best method to minimize your loss, although not strictly within the rules, is to stop paying rent now and tell them to deduct it from the deposit.

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