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8 Things You Need To Know Before You Sign A Tenancy Agreement

So students must’ve taken the giant step of moving out of their family home to live their life on their own two feet and moving in to their own accommodation! You’ve done your research, scoped out potential places and have finally decided on one, hurray! Now it’s just a matter of signing your Tenancy Agreement.

But wait! Don’t sign it just yet. Before signing your tenancy agreement, these are the 8 important things that you will need to know before making your move officially.

Term of tenancy

How long do you intend to rent your place? Make sure that the length of time of the rental agreement is stated clearly in your agreement. Even if you have agreed with your landlord on a term of tenancy beforehand, a verbal agreement means nothing if it is not stated in the Tenancy Agreement, so be sure to check that the dates stated in the documents are correct!

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Rental and deposits payable

Have you agreed on a fixed term and monthly rental fee? Once a term and fee has been fixed, your landlord should not be able to increase your rent until the fixed term has ended. Also make sure that it is clearly stated in the Agreement whether the rental fee includes other things such as electricity, water and internet bills, or whether they will be charged separately.

Do remember to check the deposit payable and determine what kind of factors will affect the amount of deposit returned to you at the end of your Term of Tenancy.

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Refund/forfeiture policy

Continuing from Point B, be sure to take note of the refund/forfeiture policy before renting your place. What kind of rules have been put in place that could cause your claim to your deposit to be forfeited? Things like failure to pay rental, moving out without giving prior notice, and damaging property could be part of the forfeiture policy, so be sure to take note of all the house rules!

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Obligations of tenant

Even though you are a paying tenant, there are also certain obligations and responsibilities that you should be aware of. The usual obligations and responsibilities include paying the monthly rent on time, maintaining the property and obeying the terms of the Tenancy Agreement. Check with your future landlord regarding details such as who and when should the rental fee be paid, the repairs policy, and he policy on breaking the lease.

Being a good tenant can build a good and trusting relationship between you and your landlord and will make for a more pleasant stay!

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 Obligations of landlord

As much as you have to be a responsible tenant, landlords also have their fair share of obligations which you should take note of. For example, premises should be clean and livable when you move in. Landlords should also give clear guidelines in the Tenancy Agreement to avoid confusion and loopholes. Also check with your landlord regarding the type of repairs he will arrange and pay for, and what repair situations you might have to take care of by yourself. One of the most important things is to confirm how many months’ notice your landlord will have to give you in case he / she needs you to move out.

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Disclaimer: Our landlords are all meticulously selected and are reliable. This picture is not associated nor affiliated to any persons living or dead.

Fixtures and fittings provided

What kind of fixtures and fittings are there in your rented room or property? Are they suitable for you or perhaps not to your liking? If you plan to remove or replace anything, be sure to check if there are any rules in place that prevent you from doing so. Also, it’s always polite to check with your landlord first before removing anything!

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 Facilities and services provided

Make sure you ask your landlord what kind of facilities and services will be provided when you rent your place from him. Will you be able to use the kitchen and living room areas? Are you allowed to use washing machine? Will you have internet connectivity in your room? And will your bills be included in the rent or will they be charged separately? Don’t get short-changed later on due to your failure to check through the agreement!

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Events of default

Take note of the conditions in your agreement regarding situations which would be considered an Event of Default. An Event of Default allows your landlord to demand full payment of an outstanding balance before it is due. One of the most common events of default is the failure to make required payments on a timely basis.
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Well, now you know.. Don’t say we never told you! So with all these info armed and ready, go forth and #findyourplace!

Zuzanna Ch
World traveller, but with the heart stuck in Malaysia.

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