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Help!! How to deal with the unreasonalbe landlord???

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Vince Ma
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Help!! How to deal with the unreasonalbe landlord???

Postby Vince Ma » Wed, 20 Mar 2013 12:17 pm

Hi there, I have had some problems with my landlord lately, hope to seek for some enlightenment from anyone of you!

A general background information:
I have moved in to a 3 room flat in Ang Mo Kio area in the beginning of January this year. Everything looks fine to me during the viewing of the room, the landlord was a bit 'talkative' but still look normal, but then the problem slowly came in... The first day, when he saw me bringing in the ironing board to the house, he started to grumble and said something like he wouldn't rent out the room to me if he knew I am using the iron :o :o :o .

Then I started to readjust the layout of my room, which I strongly believe that I have all the rights to do so... right? Yet he started to pick on me by saying that because I relocated my bed, he and the other tenants CAN'T GET IN TO MY ROOM TO HANG THE CLOTHES :shock: :shock: (I stay in the utility room by the way). That was pretty unreasonable right? Which at the first place before I moved in, he told me in front of many including the agent that the hanging area outside my room is just for me to use, now that he was trying to pick on me for that...

Worse, under the unknown reason, I was unfortunately affected by virus infection... and he took this chance to pick on me again that it's because I relocated my bed, that affected the 'Feng Shui' of the room, that's why I fell sick... :? :? It was then that I started to be reason with him, instead of hearing out from me, he quickly change the topic to BECAUSE OF ME MOVING IN TO THIS ROOM, AND USE THE TOILET, THEY CAN'T DO ANY COOKING ANYMORE :???: :???: I was like what the heck, 1st, I am not the only tenant stay in his house, 2nd, they rarely cook, only once in awhile during weekend or a light cooking in the evening, which most of the time I wasn't using the toilet, what on earth is this landlord thinking? (He is a retired old man who always stay at home doing nothing but keep coming in to tenants' room (including female tenant's room) when we are not around, and once in while yelled like mad guy just because the baby next to door cried...)

For the reason of couldn't take it anymore, I told him I will move in the following month, which still comply with the contract of min 3 months tenancy and I will be entitled to get back my deposit. Then he said I have to pay my M1 phone bill, if not he wouldn't give me back the deposit (for the record, the M1 phone bill is entirely signed up under my name and IC, I am just using his address as mailing address).

Last night, just because I hanged my clothes in the kitchen area for about 3 days (because of raining)... he was 'so nice' that helped me to take down the sticks and anyhow hanged them inside my room... Of course I was very pissed off, then I was asking him why would he do that to me? He scolded me like I have done some big mistake that I have hung my clothes for three days and made that caused the other tenants can't hang theirs... then I look up to the ceiling... 4 empty long sticks hanged nicely over there (you know what I mean)... So we started an argument (I recorded the argument secretly, he just keep yelling at me and threatening me at some extent)...

That was generally what had happened during my 2 months plus tenancy with this landlord... sorry being so long...

My question are:
- Does he have any rights to withhold my deposit even if I didn't pay for my phone bill, or any right to check on my bill?
- If everything can't really solved amicably, who has the higher chance of winning if the case is brought to court (let's say he anyhow find any reason not to return me the deposit)?
- If I complain this to my agent, and I move out now, will I get the compensation like what is cited in the contract?

Looking for a constructive advice/opinion, thanks!!
Best Regards,
Vince

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JR8
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Re: Help!! How to deal with the unreasonalbe landlord???

Postby JR8 » Wed, 20 Mar 2013 7:11 pm

Vince Ma wrote:My question are:
a - Does he have any rights to withhold my deposit even if I didn't pay for my phone bill, or any right to check on my bill?
b - If everything can't really solved amicably, who has the higher chance of winning if the case is brought to court (let's say he anyhow find any reason not to return me the deposit)?
c - If I complain this to my agent, and I move out now, will I get the compensation like what is cited in the contract?


a - If the bill is in your name, it is solely your liability (now and ever). So it is nothing to do with him. It is as inappropriate as you demanding to read his bank statements, just because you happen to live at the same address.

b - Very hard to say, as we have not heard 'his side of the story'. You might consider printing out the application form to the small claim court/tribunal, and leaving it on your desk. If you're lucky next time he walks into your room he will see it and get the message that you are prepared to take action if necessary for the return of your deposit. However if not, and he does with-hold it, tell him you're 'taking him to the SMC then'. And hopefully he'll think 'Oh that's what that form was for, he's thinking ahead of me, he's serious - I better comply'.

c - Can't say. As we don't know what commission you paid and what contract you have.

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Postby LongTimeHere » Thu, 21 Mar 2013 5:01 pm

Looks like you cant stay here anyway.

If you have decided to leave then send him an official note using whatever mode of communication specified in the tenancy agreement. Ask him to reply.

If he replies saying that he will only return the deposit after you have paid the phone bill then great. Take the reply, leave first and lodge a case with small claims tribunal. You will get back your deposit and traveling expenses.

Your mobile phone bill is your own liability, insisting that as a condition of returning deposit will not stand.

BTW why don't you change to online billing? takes away the whole issue.

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taxico
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Postby taxico » Sat, 23 Mar 2013 11:25 am

i don't think he's allowed to rent out the utility room...

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Postby Vince Ma » Tue, 26 Mar 2013 10:30 am

To taxico,

By right by HDB law, it's not allowed, I only got to know this fact after having dispute with my landlord (I went online and check), but the property agent told me even though it's not allowed, HDB 'will not really care' unless it causes major problem to the surrounding...

To LongTimeHere,

I did an audio recording regarding his reply, and get humiliated at the same time... feel so unfortunate to stay in his house...

To answer your another question, I didn't expect a mailing of simple letter would cause me so much hassle... I agree with you, I should change to online billing from now on...

To JR8,
Thanks for the brilliant advice... nevertheless, he doesn't know English, so no point to let him see the application form, as he won't know what the heck that is for...

And I don't think 'his side of story' can really be helpful... as it's mostly non-logical... Even the agent also couldn't stand him!!!

Now that I just wish time will pass faster and leave peacefully with my deposit be given back... If not, he will really have to eat what he sows, as I have additional video clip showing that he was 'trespassing' my room even though I have already pasted a notice saying 'Please don't enter my room without my permission, and please respect my rights!' in mandarin, but he still entered... too bad...
Best Regards,

Vince

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zzm9980
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Postby zzm9980 » Tue, 26 Mar 2013 11:01 am

Vince Ma wrote:nevertheless, he doesn't know English, so no point to let him see the application form, as he won't know what the heck that is for...


M1 bills come in Chinese? :?

Vince Ma
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Postby Vince Ma » Tue, 26 Mar 2013 11:31 am

M1 bills come in Chinese? Confused


With M1 logo, it's more than sufficient for him to know it's a phone bill :wink:
Best Regards,

Vince

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Postby offshoreoildude » Tue, 26 Mar 2013 1:46 pm

I think the LL is saying "clear your M1 bill so I don't get mail for the next XXX months" - it is a PITA to keep getting bills from former tenants for sure.
Now I'm called PNGMK

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Postby LongTimeHere » Tue, 26 Mar 2013 2:01 pm

Vince Ma:

Your are actually renting the utility room of an HDB? this is not even allowed.

http://www.hdb.gov.sg/fi10/fi10323p.nsf ... entOutRoom it clearly states '# living room, household shelters and utility room cannot be sublet'

Your first priority is to move out asap. Second don't believe the agent, some of them will say anything to get money.

Third, you can get your deposit back and you can make it difficult for the landlord to rent in future. From the look of it this fella needs money quite badly and won't like to get noticed by HDB. Obviously this guy has not registered the sublet and that in itself is a violations of the rules.

The authorities here don't like people violating the rules and tenants causing trouble in sub-ordinate courts.

Once out of that house. You can easily do the above.. it will take 2 months or so. BTW not understanding English is not a legal excuse in Singapore considering the guy signed the contract in English in the first place.

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Postby JR8 » Wed, 27 Mar 2013 12:14 am

^ +1

Threaten (politely) to use this knowledge against him, if he does not act reasonably with the return of your deposit.

I expect that this will be a language that he does understand!

Vince Ma
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Postby Vince Ma » Wed, 27 Mar 2013 10:44 am

offshoreoildude wrote:I think the LL is saying "clear your M1 bill so I don't get mail for the next XXX months" - it is a PITA to keep getting bills from former tenants for sure.


He was saying "clear your bill or I will go M1 to check, I don't want to get any legal letter in my house just because you didn't pay for you bill! And if you don't proof that you have paid, i won't return the deposit!"

But hey, at the first place, how could he just assume that I won't pay for my bill? I don't have any bad record for paying my bills, and I understand where he is coming from... but the way he put it was really like commanding me to do something, which I don't feel it's appropriate, and that is lack of mutual respect!!! :cry: :cry:
Best Regards,

Vince

Vince Ma
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Postby Vince Ma » Wed, 27 Mar 2013 10:53 am

LongTimeHere wrote:Vince Ma:
Your first priority is to move out asap. Second don't believe the agent, some of them will say anything to get money.

Third, you can get your deposit back and you can make it difficult for the landlord to rent in future. From the look of it this fella needs money quite badly and won't like to get noticed by HDB. Obviously this guy has not registered the sublet and that in itself is a violations of the rules.


I still need to wait for the contract ends in order to get back my deposit, there are 3 more weeks to go... and I am moving out by then.

Whether or not it's really violating the rules, I can't be so sure... as we signed quite a number of documents and that made entire things 'looked' legitimate... and he did told me to report to HDB if I dare as he claimed that everything is approved by them, and he has done nothing illegal in this extent...
Best Regards,

Vince

Vince Ma
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Postby Vince Ma » Wed, 27 Mar 2013 10:56 am

JR8 wrote:^ +1

Threaten (politely) to use this knowledge against him, if he does not act reasonably with the return of your deposit.

I expect that this will be a language that he does understand!


Hopefully thing won't end up in this stage, 'threatening politely' will be the very last resort... but he did threaten me verbally... saying he knows a lot of people, some with two guns bla bla bla... I was thinking he watched too much dramas already... :roll: :roll: :roll:
Best Regards,

Vince

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Postby LongTimeHere » Wed, 27 Mar 2013 1:30 pm

Vince Ma:

Already posted the URL where HDB says an utility room cannot be rented. If your contract says utility room was rented he is in violation. Hence I don't know which part you are not sure about the violation unless the contract says something else.

Move out and write a polite letter to the respective HDB ward office saying that you have moved out of the unit as you realized that the landlord rented it in violation of the rules.

If he doesn't give you your deposit due to M1 bill or some rubbish go to subordinate court. You will find in this forum a detail account from me how to recover money from landlord at subordinate court.

In front of the magistrate he will come to his senses. From what you write this guy is just a bully, a legal letter with the Govt's logo is generally enough.

Its really up to you now . All the best.

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Postby Vince Ma » Wed, 27 Mar 2013 2:50 pm

LongTimeHere:

Thanks for the useful information, appreciate it! :D :D
Best Regards,

Vince


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