KNOW YOUR RIGHTS AS A LANDLORD - BUSYRA TAKIYUDIN

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Sunday, July 29, 2018

KNOW YOUR RIGHTS AS A LANDLORD


Property investment has been one of the better and safer choices that people do when it comes to investment as compared to investing in stocks or shares. Moreover property investment is tangible and will appreciate in the value over the years. More people are buying properties for investment purpose nowadays. With so many houses for rent in Kuching, are you also planning to rent out your property to earn some extra money every month? As the rental business in property is getting more competitive nowadays, landlords will need to know their rights as a landlord. This article will guide you through the rights a landlord has

1. No specific policies or law for tenancies

Unlike the procedure of sales and purchase of agreement under the Housing Development (Control and Licensing) Act 1966 that people get when they purchase a house, there is no specific policies for tenancies. Tenancy refers to the agreement on rental period that is lesser than 3 years. It is important to note that there is no specific tenancy act available in Malaysia, nor do they have any legal framework regarding tenancies. That being said, Malaysia is practicing pro-tenant when it comes to tenancies. Therefore, the landlord will just have to accept this fact and be prepared for a disadvantage. 

2. Importance of tenancy agreement

As mentioned above, currently there is no law that governs tenancies in Malaysia, hence the importance of tenancy agreement. The tenancy agreement is a document between the landlord and tenant with agreed terms and conditions between both parties. However, do note that the tenancy agreement is just an agreement that is under the Contracts Act, where it is assumed that all parties have agreed to the mutual agreement regarding the terms and conditions on their own will. Therefore, it is really important to read thoroughly the tenancy agreement before the landlord signs the tenancy agreement. The question is, how many of us do actually read through all the terms and conditions stated in the tenancy agreement as most agreement are few pages long? Understanding the tenancy agreement is essential as it will allow both parties to voice out any disagreement and make amendments to it before it is too late. Do not hesitate to call for a meeting between the landlord and tenants if there is any disagreement. If not, you could also call for legal assistance to seek for professional advice in the tenancy agreement so both parties will get benefits out of it without compromising each other’s benefits. 

Some of the terms that you will need to carefully look out for are:
a. Tenancy period + option to renew
b. Rental + deposit
c. Good and Service Tax (If applicable)
d. Mode of payment
e. Details of tenant and landlord
f. Tenancy purpose
g. Obligations and covenants
h. Commencement date + yield up date
i. List of fittings and fixtures
j. Special conditions

3. Difference between commercial tenancies and residential tenancies

As there is no standard tenancy agreement, commercial tenancies are generally more complicated than residential tenancies. Commercial tenancies have more obligations on tenants as compared to residential tenancies in terms of business licences, renovations, miscellaneous fees and GST. Hence, the major difference between a commercial tenancy and a residential tenancy. 

4. Legal remedies

In the event of any dispute between the tenant and landlord, the landlord will usually be at the losing end, such as late rental payment, tenant’s refusal to vacate, or overstays. In such cases, the only thing the landlord could do is to go for legal remedies, such as the distress action that is under the Distress Act 1951. Other than the Distress Act 1951, the landlord could also go for the Eviction Order under the Specific Relief Act 1950. 

However, do bear in mind that the landlord will have to obtain a court order before the landlord could recover the possession of the property from his or her tenant. 

If not, the landlord could try on some self help measures that might work, such as:
a. Lodge police report
b. Break the lock under police supervision
c. Take photos as evidence in case the tenants claim any loss of belongings
d. Place a notice
e. Place the photocopy of police report along with the notice 

Of course, all these are the final resort that you would want to do. Therefore, it is always important to read the tenancy agreement carefully before signing it to prevent getting yourself into troubles. Make sure the terms and conditions are agreeable between both parties. If not, you could always voice out your opinions and discuss between both the landlord and tenant until you reach an agreeable tenancy agreement. 

In conclusion, it is always advised to be well prepared before getting your property leased out. Make sure you know your rights as a landlord to prevent getting into troubles. If needed, do not hesitate to engage with legal advices and seek for professional help. 

6 comments:

  1. Very useful information Busyra..
    The important thing to remember Tenant should cooperate with the Landlord.
    Disconnect of utilities such as water and electricity is not the right solution.
    I agree that the Eviction Order is the best solution..

    ReplyDelete
  2. Tenancy agreement tu ramai yg tak amik kisah. Bagi kak ana penting in case apa2 jadi blkg hari kan.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Perkongsian yang bagus.. thanks busyra

    ReplyDelete

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