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Tenancy issue

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lalitpct
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Tenancy issue

Postby lalitpct » Mon, 09 Dec 2013 11:15 pm

I signed a house contract 1 year (1 room was locked) after 8 months owner moved his brother in the house .

We were earlier using common rooms bath room which was like any other bathroom ,but ever since his brother moved in we had to use bathroom in the masterroom ,.

The master rooms bathroom had a bath tub which was is in such uncomfortable position that we had to stand on it to take bath , and after using it for few days it crecked.

Now I have moved out but owner initially returned back 1k and retained 1k with him, and told me that he is checking with contractor.

last week he came back and told me that repair cost is 1.5k so he wants me to pay 500 sgd .

Please let me know what I can do from my side , how much he shd be deducting.

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Mon, 09 Dec 2013 11:21 pm

Personally? I'd ignore it. Others here might feel differently.

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Tenancy issue

Postby lalitpct » Mon, 09 Dec 2013 11:34 pm

but he is calling me , shall I politely ask him that let us go to tribunal court and settle it.( he didn't register the agreement )

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Postby x9200 » Mon, 09 Dec 2013 11:38 pm

I would ignore it too.

Your story is pretty vague but the basic fact is that the owner violating (if the case) some parts of the TA does not give you the right to damage anything. In other words you own him the costs of repair/replacement and he owns you the damages/compensations arose from him not adhering to the TA. If he decides to go to a court you may warn him that you would file a counter claim.

If you feel lucky enough you can act offensively and threaten him to go to the court if he not returns the full deposit.

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Postby JR8 » Mon, 09 Dec 2013 11:39 pm

Did you have a Tenancy Agreement for the whole unit, or just a room?

If the LL is claiming damage, how can he prove who caused it, if you did not have sole occupation?

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Postby x9200 » Mon, 09 Dec 2013 11:42 pm

Good point JR8 but OP sounds like he admitted he did it.

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Postby JR8 » Tue, 10 Dec 2013 12:02 am

Ah yes, I see now.

It's a bummer as you should be able to stand in a bath without damaging it. (Sounds like the timber 'cross-joist' supports under it are inadequate, or shrunken/warped, as happens).

In London a standard bath is about £100-200. Supply and fit, replumb, and remove waste, plus maybe £300 (3-4hrs ALL in?). That's the UK, but maybe a benchmark for you (the labour costs should be materially less here).

Aligned with others, the LL has had his chance to make appropriate deductions. He already took a lot (did he provide quotes for repairs to the alleged damage, or just assign an arbitrary figure?). Ignore him at his second bite of the cherry. Since the bathroom was shared between you and 'other parties', I see no way he can evidence who caused the alleged damage. If he wants a battle, let him set out all the grounds on which he intends to fight it ...

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Tenancy issue

Postby lalitpct » Tue, 10 Dec 2013 12:19 am

sorry if I am not clear , I will explain in a sequence

1)Nov 2012 I got the house directly with the owner , he prepared the tenancy aggrement as below
[The landlord shall let and the tenant shall take the 2 rooms flat know as 4a hdb apartment together with the fixtures ,fittings and household effects]

House had 3 room + 1 common room + 1 kitchen + 2 bathroom ( 1 in common room and 1 in master room)

2)After that few issues that occurred in the house like sink issue , pipe issue etc
which was around 150 sgd , he paid for that saying any cost involved he will pay for it.

3)In Aug 2013 he told me his bro will move in (with wife and one kid) and they took the other 2 rooms whereas I occupied the masterroom , I didn't agree still he forced.

4)rent was revised from 2k to 1.45k (without aircon house), I insisted on moving out but could not as he had the deposit

5) I stayed aug sep oct there , but had to use bathroom in the masterroom which had bath tub. It wasn't great one but shower was just above it so we had to step on the bath tub to take shower and which got craked.

6)finally while moving out in nov 2013 on inspection next day after leaving he said there is a crack in the bath tub so he is waiting for the contractor to come and check.

7) I told him I don't have money and was relying on deposit so after much reluctance he gave 1k and retained 1k , after checking with few contractor he said cost is 1.5k and asking for 500 sgd from me now..

I don't have registraction copy ,(I think he didn't register it)

I think even 1k deducted is very high as tub was very old, He says when he used it was ok.

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Tenancy issue

Postby lalitpct » Tue, 10 Dec 2013 12:22 am

actually it was in master room so obviously its me
:( it was really old tub and bound to break as there was air gap between tub and base.

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Tenancy issue

Postby lalitpct » Tue, 10 Dec 2013 12:34 am

Shall I ask him for tribunal court ???

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Re: Tenancy issue

Postby x9200 » Tue, 10 Dec 2013 7:07 am

1) Was it this the type of the bath tub designed for showering or this was just a bath tub with a shower? It is IMO a different thing if you need to step in it just few time taking a bath or continuously for 5-30 min while taking a shower. If the shower head was attached high it could be safety assumed it was also for showering.
It is still unclear what you meant by this: "had a bath tub which was is in such uncomfortable position that we had to stand on it". This suggests you used it the way you should not. Was it the case?

2) If he adjusted the rent and you started paying the adjusted rate it looks like you de facto accepted his new conditions so probably have no case against him for what he was in breach.

3) By not registering you mean he had no permission from HDB?

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tenancy issue

Postby lalitpct » Tue, 10 Dec 2013 10:25 am

1)Meaning bath tub which was kept right below the shower , right next to tub was toilet bowl . SO no other place to stand where shower can reach.

2)He forced his decision on me and he asked for same rate for which I told him i wont then he said ok he will keep his brother for only two weeks and then once they entered I had no alternative as deposit was with him
.. and frankly I dont want any money back ., just that I dont want him to bother me anymore as I know that it is nearly impossioble to get back anything from 1k.

3)In the new house I got stamp duty letter from the agent which was some 100 sgd on inland revenue letter head , That letter I didnt get from previos house . So I suspect he didnt register in HDB although I am not sure on this.
May be he did and didnt gave it to me .
The reason I doubt is because in the new house that was paid by me, so obviously previous owner wont be so generous that he will pay from his pocket.

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Re: tenancy issue

Postby JR8 » Tue, 10 Dec 2013 1:01 pm

lalitpct wrote:3)In the new house I got stamp duty letter from the agent which was some 100 sgd on inland revenue letter head , That letter I didnt get from previos house . So I suspect he didnt register in HDB although I am not sure on this.
May be he did and didnt gave it to me .
The reason I doubt is because in the new house that was paid by me, so obviously previous owner wont be so generous that he will pay from his pocket.

---------------------------------------------------------------

You can a search (using the box above-right, on 'landlord deposit') and read topics where people before have been through similar problems to your own.

Re: your point 3 above, read here ... http://www.iras.gov.sg/irashome/page04.aspx?id=8568

Now I don't know, but I'd imagine that if you have to pay a tax, via someone acting on your behalf, that you should expect to receive back proof from them that is has been paid. For example when we've rented here, the agent sends us a copy of the TA with the duty stamps on it.

Importantly, for a tenancy agreement to be admissible as evidence in court, it needs to be stamped. No stamps? - you can't use the TA as evidence in court (it effectively doesn't legally exist - so you can't argue a case!)

This could be a stick to beat your deposit out of the landlord with.
-----------
'Kindly return $x [reasonable sum] of my deposit within 28 days via cheque to xyz name/address, otherwise regrettably I will have no choice but to take professional advice on this matter.

If you decline to return my deposit, could you advise whether stamp duty was paid to IRAS, as I don't seem to have ever received a copy of the stamped Tenancy Agreement from you. And also whether the tenancy was registered with the HDB.

I'm sure this is all a simple misunderstanding, and I look forward to being able to resolve this amicably and informally between ourselves'.

------------

- Keep it courteous, un-emotional, non-confrontational* > proceed calmly and politely but make it obvious you are carrying a very big stick.
- Give him a clear, defined, reasonable, and simple exit-way out. Don't cause him to think he's losing face, but suggest he has perhaps made an innocent mistake.
- Be reasonable and accurate in the sum required, and date by when.


* In 'The West' you'd intentionally go in with absolutely all-guns-blazing a la Pearl Harbour, 'Shock and awe' :). The intention being to intimidate the target into immediate submission. But that approach does not work with Asian landlords who will just totally clam-up on you if you cause them to lose face.

Let us know how it goes!

p.s. For the sake of $2.24 send your letter via Registered Post. That can help jolt people into realising that things are not casual despite your politeness, but already potentially most serious.

Final thought: If a landlord makes deductions from a tenancy deposit on the basis of damage, it is reasonable for him to have to evidence how the cost of that damage and deduction has been arrived at. i.e. he can't say you broke the bath and I had to replace it, and it cost $x, without sending you a copy of the bill for $x. So request to see a copy of such bills.

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Postby taxico » Sat, 14 Dec 2013 9:43 am

if this was a standard singapore TA... stamping would be the tenant's responsibility (and cost)... and the tenant usually has to stamp a copy for the landlord.

why don't you find out how much to replace the tub instead of relying on the landlord's word? do it sooner than later.

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Postby JR8 » Sat, 14 Dec 2013 12:29 pm

taxico wrote:if this was a standard singapore TA... stamping would be the tenant's responsibility (and cost)... and the tenant usually has to stamp a copy for the landlord.


When we've rented a place, I'd thought we were only paying our own SD.

So if we rent a place at X/month, then the SD on a one year lease is:

(X*12) * 0.4%

I just checked our current TA, and that is what was paid. And there is no suggestion we paid any SD for the landlord (thinking about it, wouldn't paying someone else's personal tax obligation be a little unusual?).

The info in the 'Expat Guide' in the sub-toolbar
http://www.singaporeexpats.com/guides-f ... rental.htm
...suggests the above is how it is too. There is no mention of paying the landlords SD. I'd never considered a LL might have to pay SD too. If this were so, and a LL did/had not, wouldn't that mean he could not contest a court case taken against him? I've seen no one report encountering that situation before...

Anyway...I'm pretty confused!

Afterthought: If you mean that the tenant is obliged to provide proof to the LL that he has paid SD, then yes I'd agree!


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