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very dfficult landlady - advice sought

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pault
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very dfficult landlady - advice sought

Postby pault » Thu, 03 Jan 2013 11:40 am

My landlady who is part of two couples who purchased a condo and started off quite friendly has proved to be an extremely 'challenging' woman. I am now coming to move out and as i suspected she is making all sorts of fuss about the condo and even picking up on things like peeling paint on the door handle and claiming 'it looks like someone has been purposely scratching it' my family and i have been in the condo for two years and there are normal signs of wear and tear e.g marks on the wooden floor , some small marks on the wall etc . the condo itself , though expensive, is very poorly built with cheap windows , electrics etc.

I of course plan to have the condo propperly cleaned, floors polished etc

She has over 8000 SGD of my money an I want to know in advance - before the formal check out - what options are available to me. I am sure she plans to withild a large portion of the deposit and i wan to make sure I can counter with appropriate legal measures.

Any help or advice is most gratefully received
thanks

paul

Steve1960
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Postby Steve1960 » Thu, 03 Jan 2013 12:01 pm

Do you have the time or inclination to fix these things yourself before moving out? That's probably the best way of keeping the costs under control. Others here will advise you on the legal side.

Not much use to you now but for others. I have maintained a document since arriving in April for all the minor things I have repaired or replaced in the apartment. Last week I sent the owners agent a summary for 2012 signed by me and I requested acknowledgement of it. I have no issues with our landlord but I want a record of all events which could be referred to if necessary when the rental period finishes.

offshoreoildude
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Postby offshoreoildude » Thu, 03 Jan 2013 12:48 pm

There are many posts on this sort of topic in the forum. In general though;

1. Document and prepare to move out - I suggest a hand over earlier than your last day to give you some time to fix things which you do ASAP. I'd suggest you advise her to be there on the last day with a cheque for your deposit - there is really no reason for your deposit to be held for any longer if you have a sign off. One thing that might help is to have a handyman on the spot who can be tasked (and paid) to fix anything that she claims needs doing - then pay him - on the spot - and demand her cheque on the spot. Then resist the urge to punch her in the freak mouth when she doesn't pay up.
2. Prepare to go to the SCT to claim your deposit back.
Now I'm called PNGMK

movingtospore
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Postby movingtospore » Thu, 03 Jan 2013 3:34 pm

I think that the locals are so used to sh$t construction that they think it's perfectly normal to charge tenants for excessive wear and tear when in fact the issue is they used crap materials etc in the first place.

Not easy to win that argument though. We came to an "agreement" with ours by offering to pay for some things but refusing to pay for others. Seemed to do the trick although the experience has not improved my opinion of this place.

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JR8
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Postby JR8 » Thu, 03 Jan 2013 5:49 pm

This question comes up periodically and I replied to one just a couple of weeks again.

Try doing a search on 'fair wear and tear' and it should come up.

p.s. Sounds like your landlords are amateurs, and your home is their 'collective baby'.

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Postby quidsin » Thu, 03 Jan 2013 10:00 pm

pault,
you will find yourself arguing the toss with her over what is deemed fair wear and tear. the fact is that they can try their luck and try to rip you off for ur deposit and this happens a lot, twice to me in the six years which i have been here. so, i would at least try and hold back the last months rent to see if she doesn't notice, and claim innocence if confronted saying the standing order stopped a month early, oops! that way you can say, just deduct itfrom the deposit and then you have 50% of ur deposit back already then.

as mentioned, they wil expect you to make the place like new and if not, use your deposit to do it. you need to take them to a small claims court to recover your deposit and this is a fairly swift and inexpensive process. normally the threat alone will make the greedy twat see sense.

all the best.

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JR8
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Postby JR8 » Thu, 03 Jan 2013 10:49 pm

quidsin wrote:pault,
you will find yourself arguing the toss with her over what is deemed fair wear and tear. the fact is that they can try their luck and try to rip you off for ur deposit and this happens a lot, twice to me in the six years which i have been here.

It's never happened to me, in the five countries I've rented :cool: I think it comes down to knowing your rights/obligations and projecting confidence. You know the expression; 'Proceeding quietly but carrying a big stick'. It can help if you've just drop into discussion that you been a landlord for 20 [example] years and when you last discussed the definition of wear and tear with a lawyer, 'It didn't cover normal and reasonable wear such as this'...


so, i would at least try and hold back the last months rent to see if she doesn't notice,

No, not a good idea. That puts you in breach of contract, and makes you worse than the landlord. Goes down like a lead balloon if you ever stand up in court and have to explain your actions.


and claim innocence if confronted saying the standing order stopped a month early, oops! that way you can say, just deduct itfrom the deposit and then you have 50% of ur deposit back already then.

And you're in breach of contract and have a landlord all fired up to damn well keep the other 50%. I'd not advise it.

as mentioned, they wil expect you to make the place like new and if not, use your deposit to do it.

That might be what they expect/hope/imagine but that would not be reasonable [legal term]. You are entitled to Fair Wear and Tear. I mean if you hire a car, you don't hand it back and have to pay for new tires do you? Reasonable wear and tear is expected, damage above and beyond it is not. I agree that it might seem subjective, but it's pretty simple to judge what side of the line something is on once you have the hang of landlording.


You need to take them to a small claims court to recover your deposit and this is a fairly swift and inexpensive process. normally the threat alone will make the greedy twat see sense.

Well, that's assuming they don't return the right/fair amount of the deposit. But it would be a lot lot easier to proceed so it does not come to that. I have taken landlords/freeholders to court, and had to resort to threatening tenants on a few occasions. It's a very stressful, very time consuming and highly unpleasant process. Go about it with knowledge, confidence, goodwill, and knowing 'right is on your side'... that's my advice.




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