Your search results

What is a Tenancy Agreement (TA)

Posted by Jayson Ang on July 21, 2023
| 0

TLDR

When it comes to understanding property jargon, it’s crucial to familiarize yourself with the specifics of a Tenancy Agreement (TA) in Singapore. This legal document outlines the rights and obligations of both landlords and tenants, covering aspects such as rental payments, property maintenance, and clauses like the “Exclusive Possession” and “Fair Wear and Tear.” Prospective tenants should pay close attention to the details in the TA and be aware of clauses that may allow them to break the lease, such as the diplomatic clause. For landlords looking to add clauses, seeking advice from a property agent or lawyer is recommended to avoid misunderstandings. Understanding the nuances of a TA is essential, as not all agreements are the same, ensuring a smooth rental experience for both parties.

Every once in a while, I like to take some of the confusion out of property jargon and demystify it for all.

Today, let’s focus on the Tenancy Agreement (TA) – the legal document that establishes the agreement between a landlord and tenant, detailing all their rights and obligations, as well as any potential repercussions for not following the agreement.

In Singapore, the Tenancy Agreement is not as standardized as in some other countries, giving rise to an array of peculiar terms.

For instance, some Tenancy Agreements forbid the consumption or cooking of certain foods, while others may even prohibit activities like running a business or mining Bitcoin from home.

Nevertheless, the Council of Estate Agencies (CEA) has provided a template document, although its use is not mandatory. This may change in the near future; for now, it is possible to create another Tenancy Agreement with unusual terms.

Prospective tenants should never jump to conclusions about the TA, but should instead pay close attention to the details!

The TA serves as an agreement between the landlord and tenant, outlining the details of the lease for the property.

What is in the TA?

A tenancy agreement will usually include the following:

The details of the tenants and landlords.

Tenant’s covenants: The tenant pledges to abide by their commitments: such as, but not limited to, regularly paying rent, maintaining the unit in a clean state, and refraining from subletting the premises illegally.

Landlord’s covenants: The landlord pledges to respect their tenants’ privacy by not entering the unit without permission, keep the unit in a sound structural condition, and return the security deposit when the lease expires, among other promises.

In Singapore, the tenant is typically responsible for covering the costs of utilities like electricity, water, and Wi-Fi.

Tenants typically assume responsibility for repairs up to a certain limit (generally S$150 – S$300) – after that, landlords take over and cover the rest.

Please provide the specifics on when and how the rent needs to be settled.

A tenant may be able to break the lease due to certain clauses, such as the diplomatic clause, or any other situation that permits them to do so.

It pays to be mindful that not all TAs are alike; thus, you may find differences. No matter if you have experience renting a home in the past, don’t assume that everything is the same – it’s best to always be prepared!

If you’re a landlord wishing to add an extra clause to your Tenancy Agreement, you may want to seek advice from a property agent or lawyer. Don’t forget to make the clause clear to potential tenants to avoid potential misunderstandings in the future!

Here are some of the clauses to watch out for:

The “Exclusive Possession” Clause

“The ‘quiet enjoyment’ clause is an essential component of the Tenancy Agreement – it guarantees that the tenant will be able to use the premises without any disturbance from the Landlord!”

Tenants have the right to deny entry to the premises, as if it were their own – even to the landlord! Consequently, should the landlord wish to enter the residence to make renovations or showings, they must seek permission from the tenant.

The “Fair Wear and Tear” Clause

Tenants have a responsibility to keep the house and its contents in great shape – unless the damage is caused by normal wear and tear, in which case they are not responsible.

Furthermore, the landlord cannot keep a portion of the security deposit to cover any of these damages – for instance, if the kitchen sink pipe breaks because it is two decades old, it’s not on the tenant to fix the issue.

But, if the tenant attempts a DIY repair and something goes wrong, then the responsibility to repair the damage lies with them.

The meaning of fair wear and tear is open to interpretation, however, it is expected that common sense is used.

To illustrate, the landlord can’t ask the tenant to redecorate the entire condo simply because a few patches of paint have peeled.

The Diplomatic Clause

The diplomatic clause is a lifesaver for those from overseas who have to unexpectedly end their rental agreement in Singapore – for reasons such as a job relocation, dropping out of university, or any other reasons.

With this clause, all that’s required is a two month notice period prior to departure and, usually, the clause is only valid after a tenant has been living in the property for twelve months or more.

The “Right of Re-entry” Clause

If a tenant breaches any of the conditions of the lease agreement, the landlord has the right to end the tenancy. The most common cause is failure to pay rent on time; the Tenancy Agreement should clearly set out the terms, including what happens if rent is not paid within 21 days of the due date.

Landlords have the right to end the lease if the tenant breaches any of the conditions.

Be on the alert for tenancy agreements with abnormal or omitted clauses. For instance, if the TA states that the landlord can retake the property if you fail to pay rent (with no time frame specified), you could be evicted even if you are a single day late with the rent!

Should You Buy, Sell or Wait?

If you’re reading this, you must be trying to figure out the best course of action right now: is it the right time to buy or sell?

It’s difficult to give an exact answer since everyone’s situation is unique and what works for one person may not necessarily work for you.

I can bring you a wealth of on-the-ground experience and a data-driven approach to provide clarity and direction. From beginners to experienced investors, our top-down, objective approach will help you on your real estate journey.

I can help you by:

  1. Offering Strategic Real Estate Advice – I can help create a comprehensive plan to guide you through your property journey.
  2. Connecting Your Home with the Perfect Buyers – Through stunning visuals, an effective communication strategy, and an in-depth knowledge of the market, we’ll ensure your home is presented in the best possible way to fulfill your goals.

You May Also Like …


Discover How The CPF Accrued Interest Can Impact Your Property Sale Proceeds
All Blog Posts Buying Tips

Discover How The CPF Accrued Interest Can Impact Your Property Sale Proceeds

Singaporeans are renowned for being smart and savvy - especially when it comes to selling their homes, whether it's an...
Read More
When a Property Seller Pulls Out of the Deal : What Now?
All Blog Posts Buying Tips

When a Property Seller Pulls Out of the Deal : What Now?

TLDR When a property deal is not yet formalized, sellers can withdraw without consequences. However, once an Option to Purchase...
Read More
5 Reasons Why Singapore Loves Investing in Properties
Mandarin Top 5

5 Reasons Why Singapore Loves Investing in Properties

Property investing is a popular and lucrative option in Singapore due to several reasons. Firstly, Singapore's stable and growing economy...
Read More
Decoding the HDB Classification: The New Prime, Plus & Standard – What It Means for Singaporeans
All Buying Tips Opinion

Decoding the HDB Classification: The New Prime, Plus & Standard – What It Means for Singaporeans

TLDR The National Day Rally 2023 introduced a new classification for HDB flats, replacing the old 'mature versus non-mature estates'...
Read More
6 Essential Factors HDB Upgraders Should Be Aware Of Before Purchasing a Condo in 2023
All Blog Posts Buying Tips

6 Essential Factors HDB Upgraders Should Be Aware Of Before Purchasing a Condo in 2023

TLDR When upgrading your property, consider factors like rental rates, Buyer's Stamp Duty adjustments, higher interest rates for bank loans,...
Read More
5 Proven Strategies for Increasing the Value of Your Singapore Property
Mandarin Top 5

5 Proven Strategies for Increasing the Value of Your Singapore Property

In Singapore's competitive real estate market, adding value to your property can be the key to making a profitable investment....
Read More
The Impact of a Real Estate Agent on Your Property’s Selling Price
All Buying Tips Opinion

The Impact of a Real Estate Agent on Your Property’s Selling Price

TLDR In the world of real estate, the value of property agents lies in their ability to create competition among...
Read More
Top 5 Factors to Consider When Choosing a Property in Singapore
Mandarin Top 5

Top 5 Factors to Consider When Choosing a Property in Singapore

The top 5 factors to consider when choosing a property in Singapore.  Whether you're a seasoned investor or a first-time...
Read More
Singapore’s Real Estate Market: The 5 Most Important Documents to Review Before Buying a Property
Mandarin Top 5

Singapore’s Real Estate Market: The 5 Most Important Documents to Review Before Buying a Property

Singapore's real estate market is highly regulated and can be complex for those unfamiliar with the process. As a prospective...
Read More
5 Cons Of Buying A Resale Property
Mandarin Top 5

5 Cons Of Buying A Resale Property

Luxury properties in Districts 9 and 10 of Singapore are highly coveted, and for good reason. From stunning views and...
Read More
Should You Be Upgrading To A Condo In 2023?
All Blog Posts Opinion

Should You Be Upgrading To A Condo In 2023?

TLDR The 2022/23 property market is experiencing high prices, making it challenging for individuals to decide whether to upgrade their...
Read More
HDB Loan Vs Bank Loan: Pros & Cons
All Blog Posts Buying Tips

HDB Loan Vs Bank Loan: Pros & Cons

TLDR When deciding between an HDB loan or a bank loan for purchasing a property in Singapore, consider key factors...
Read More
How Can Real Estate Investment Help You to Combat Inflation?
All Blog Posts Opinion

How Can Real Estate Investment Help You to Combat Inflation?

TLDR When it comes to real estate investments in Singapore amidst rising inflation rates, consider strategies such as capitalizing on...
Read More
Essential Steps for Safely Purchasing Your First Home in Singapore
All Buying Tips

Essential Steps for Safely Purchasing Your First Home in Singapore

TLDR When considering buying your first property in Singapore, start by assessing your budget and qualifying for a permissible loan....
Read More
Why Can’t We Buy Low, Sell High?
All Opinion

Why Can’t We Buy Low, Sell High?

Madam Tan voiced that approximately two years ago, when her apartment hit its minimum occupation period, she and her spouse...
Read More
How Much You Need to Earn to Afford a Condo 2023
All Buying Tips

How Much You Need to Earn to Afford a Condo 2023

TLDR When considering investing in a private property in Singapore, it's important to understand your borrowing capacity. Financial experts recommend...
Read More
5 Must-Know Questions Before Investing in Real Estate
All Blog Posts Buying Tips

5 Must-Know Questions Before Investing in Real Estate

TLDR When considering whether to buy a new development or a resale property, it can be challenging. In the blog...
Read More
From Garden City to Smart Nation: Singapore’s Top 5 Goals Building a Sustainable and Livable City
Mandarin Top 5

From Garden City to Smart Nation: Singapore’s Top 5 Goals Building a Sustainable and Livable City

Singapore is a small island city-state with a population of over 5 million people. Its urban landscape is constantly evolving,...
Read More
Budget 2024: What To Expect For The Singapore Residential Market?
All Opinion

Budget 2024: What To Expect For The Singapore Residential Market?

TLDR In 2025, owner-occupiers of residential properties can benefit from property tax relief based on the Annual Value Band. Retirees...
Read More
A Comprehensive Guide for Buying Landed Real Estate in Singapore
All Buying Tips

A Comprehensive Guide for Buying Landed Real Estate in Singapore

TLDR When it comes to buying landed property in Singapore, there are three main types: terrace houses, semi-detached homes, and...
Read More
1 2 3 16

Compare Listings