We wonder how excited you’ll be when we tell you that the professional fees for engaging an agent are DEDUCTIBLE for your subsequent tenancies. As you’re sitting there in front of your computer, reading this page with your hand on your mouse, your curiosity increases and you are wondering this will affect you when you engage our professional services.
I’m sure that on a stone tablet somewhere there’s etched a commandment that states that “Thou Shall Not Mention The Word ‘Tax’ on a Sunday’. From the fact that even our favourite Merlion is prone to lightning strikes, it’ll be wise not to tempt the fates too much and keep this post short. And speaking of Merlions, have you heard the one where one of our beauty contestants thought it went extinct in 1965? Why do they make it so easy??
I realized soon after writing a post about how much you can expect to pay for your initial HDB rental payments and the new HDB registration law, I should actually go into the rental procedure itself. Well, it looks like I finally got round to it! It’s not a complicated procedure, and I’m sure you’ll be able to wrap your arms around it in no time.
Let’s start with the things you’ll have to bring along:
- Photocopied passport
- Photocopied employment pass
- Good faith deposit of one month rental
The champagne’s been popped, resolutions made (and maybe already broken) and the happy haze has cleared… somewhat. Now it’s time to get back to that necessary evil known as ‘apartment hunting’. Finding an apartment can be daunting task. So here’s a few tips to get you started. Besides, it’s that time of the year for lists!
- Decide what you want.
You know that thing you do just before you’re considering dating someone where you take out a yellow legal pad and make a list of her pros and cons? Well, it’s something like that here. Like most Singaporeans, I used to stay overseas for a few years and that meant searching for a place to rent. One of the things I did before I went out hunting for girls apartments was to draw three columns on a piece of paper with the headings ‘Things I Need’, ‘Things I Want’ and ‘Deal-Breakers’.
If you’re an expat working in Singapore, a diplomatic clause is something that you can usually find, or insert, into your standard rental agreement. A bit wordy for me to post the entire clause here, so I’m just going to give you a summary.
The diplomatic clause allows you to terminate your contract after 12 months and giving 2 months’ notice. Note that landlords will allow a diplomatic clause only if the lease is for 2 years or more.
Either of 3 conditions have to be fulfilled before you can activate the diplomatic clause. You have to be:
- Transferred out of Singapore permanently by your firm
- Ceased to be employed
- Get kicked out of Singapore and not allowed to return
So, if you’re getting a lease for 2 years or more, please make sure that there’s a diplomatic clause in your contract. It’s there to safeguard guard you, just in case…
Let’s say that you’re thinking about renting a place. You’ve called an agent, viewed a couple of places and found one that you can actually imagine yourself staying in. What do you have to pay?
Generally, your first payments would include:
- A security deposit equalling a month’s rent
- One month’s advance rent
- Agent commission, which is half a month’s rent including GST
For a while now, I have been grappling with the best way to post some of my listings without it getting too boring in here. It seems that would be to link it to another site so that it won’t get too cluttered. Argh, and I thought I could avoid that. Well, so far I’ve managed to post a few rental listings up. You can get them here. Alternatively, you can click on Agent Fai’s Rental Listings in the Blogroll column on your right.