Living in Singapore there are some rules about the tenancy that should be followed when you have taken a property on rent in Singapore. As a tenant, it is illegal to sublet HDB flats, while for the HDB flat owners, there are strict guidelines to adhere to; like the new rule restricts landlords to let out 4 room or larger flats to more than 6 unrelated persons.
The rule of “maximum cap to rent out to only 6 unrelated persons” applies to even private properties with a minimum rent out period of three consecutive months.
It is important that all the subletting rules are part of the tenancy agreement clause and both the landlord and tenant must follow that during the entire period of association.
In any case the real danger is the dodgy tenant who might sublet the unit out of sheer greed to make some extra money. It might even happen that these fraudsters themselves do not live in the same place!
Today we bring you the excerpt of an interview of one such unsuspecting landlord, Adam Toh, who was a victim of a fraudulent tenant-subletting racket, quite recently!
A Greedy Fraudster
“My place was on Airbnb and Craiglist!”
Adam – I rented out condo to a seemingly nice bloke, who paid everything up front and I never thought that anything could go wrong.
Truuue – Where is the condo?
Adam – In Amber road and I stayed there for 6 months. It was meant for my family’s use, so I furnished it accordingly. Then I had to suddenly move to Australia and thought that I can rent out the place for a year or so.
Truuue – So how you realize that your place is getting misused?
Adam – Much later. The first lease agreement was for 11 months but after it expired I dilly-dallied a bit to get it renewed and my tenant continued to live there. I use to get my rent on time and rarely use to talk to my tenant about any issues. It was going great, you know! No trouble, no complaints!
Now looking back I can realize that it was a little too quiet.
A few months back I planned to return to Singapore and was wondering whether I should be renting a place in the beginning and then gradually move to my own condo when the time comes. I started checking some places online for renting and to my horror, I saw my own condo over there up for rent! I even saw my place was listed on Airbnb and Craiglist!
I immediately spoke to my tenant and asked him about it and told him that I will be taking legal action. However, when I reached Singapore, I found the door keys in the mailbox and no trace of that guy!
These instances are great learning for anyone who wants to put their place on rent in Singapore and can be easy prey to such scams. It is mostly quite safe in Singapore and the laws are strict to protect the interest of the house owner but a few proactive steps can prevent any such mishaps from occurring at the first place. Follow a few simple steps
- Have a proper and updated lease agreement
- Be aware of the subletting laws
- Keep in regular contact with the tenants
You may also list your property on the Truuue app, it’s quite simple and takes just a few minutes. Our customer service team does the relevant background check to filter out all the dodgy characters and provide you the best match after understanding the need of both the tenants and landlords. We also take care of the agreement and initial negotiations on your behalf so that you can have your peace of mind.
At TRUrental we are committed to delivering the best experience suited for both landlord and tenant while you rent in Singapore. We care about all the parties in the property transaction; we always aim for the WIN-WIN outcome. As you are reading this, our team is working relentlessly to find a suitable solution for these issues. To know more about our mission, follow us and download our app. Enjoy peace of mind for your next rental!