5 Things to Take Note of Before You Sign a Tenancy Agreement

March 7, 2017

Singapore is the global hub of Asia where the East meets the West. People around the globe travels to and more often settles in the island nation for a shorter or longer period of time. The demand for rented houses, therefore, remains high perennially. If you have been lucky to find your dream space after many days of struggle, rejoice not until you have read and understood the tenancy agreement thoroughly. We give you five pointers to take note of which will make your life a lot easier.

Rental Agreement and Handing over the property

Wondering why handing over the property when you vacate finds itself to the top of the discussion points even before having the property handed over to you to move-in? Well, it’s important.

Your rental agreement should have a clause indicating the current state and condition of the property including furniture and other items and how the owner expects it to be returned after the tenancy period.

We advise you to take pictures of broken furniture, doors, cabinets; stains on the wall or anything that you might believe will cause ugly conversation with the landlord on the responsibility of damaging the property before moving out. E-mail the pictures to the owner (and his agent) on Day 1 as proof of state of the property.

You are generally expected to deep clean the house and wash the curtains before handing over the property to the house owner. sendhelper has specialist cleaners whom you can book even on the same day. For curtain dry cleaning, our service providers offer the lowest price in town along with free pickup and delivery.

Paying for Utilities

If you have been following Singapore’s Budget2017, you would have learned water prices are set to increase by 30% from 1st of July. Of course, you are excited to used your bargaining skills to close the rental deal at a cheaper price but have you considered who bears the monthly utility bill especially if the owner is subletting his rooms to you.

The tenancy agreement should explicitly state who pays for what and if the space is shared, how the bill will be split.

At the end of the day, you should know how much exactly are you paying from your wallet.

Air Conditioning Maintenance

Tenants are expected to service the air conditioners every 3 months. Air-con maintenance clause will be included in the agreement and be sure to be a responsible tenant.

Engage a reliable air condition servicing company on a quarterly basis. You can sign up for sendhelper annual air-con contract servicing starting as low as $150/year which is cheaper than one-time servicing.

It’s important to keep the receipts of every servicing as the house owner will ask you for it at the end of the lease.

Repairs! Repairs & Repairs!

Damages & Repairs is a standard clause in the tenancy agreement. It basically tells you a minimum amount that you will have to fork out to repair or fix damages primarily caused due to wear and tear. Usually, the amount will range from $150- $200.

Damages due to negligence will be completely borne by the tenants unless the landlord agrees to cover the expenses partially.

You will get a grace period of up to 30 days from the start of date of tenancy to cover you in the event you discover damages caused by previous tenants or that were already there in the first place. If you do not find the ‘grace period’ in the agreement, ask for it and ensure it is included.

You can avail the services of on-demand handymen on our platform by scheduling an appointment in the app.

Exit the tenancy agreement before the end of lease

If you are unsure of the period of stay, we recommend you to sign up for the most minimum period, say, for six months or a year.  However, if you are signing up for a two-year lease, be sure include the diplomatic clause.

Diplomatic clause will let you exit the tenancy agreement early without a penalty being imposed. You will have to meet a minimum period of stay before exercising the diplomatic clause. It is generally only found in 2-year leases.

Services for Rented Homes

Sendhelper offers a wide range of home services for tenants and landlords. Move-in/out cleaning, regular or spring cleaning, laundry services, aircon maintenance, handyman services, pest control etc. are some of the services you can choose from to keep your home organised. Download Sendhelper app today to book a service.