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2008/10/07 12:29:38 PM

Printha
Printha
Posts: 9
have been listed on TPN(credit bureau) for failure to take occupation of a proposed Flat by Rent&Buy Properties.As we all know one has do a credit check with the rental agency before they process a lease(or take you on as tenant). But I have not to date recieved counter-signed lease agreement nor do I even know who is Landlord?
Yet I am expected to R8530 on a leap of faith that the lease valid and binding?

Does TPN not need more proof to list someone as a bad payer?
edited by Printha on 10/7/2008
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2008/10/07 01:24:33 PM

Michelle
Michelle
Posts: 156
Credit Bureau data:
Rental Payment Profile: an actual account of how the tenant pays their rent each month (paid on time, paid late, partial payment or did not pay). The tenant does not need to give consent for this data to be loaded to the credit bureau. But can dispute the accuracy.

Default: a rating listed against the tenant. (eg: absconded, evicted, damage to property etc). The landlord or estate agent must give the tenant 20 business days notice of their intention to list if the account is not settled.

Landlords or estate agents must ensure the data submitted to the credit bureau is accurate, up-to-date, relevant, complete, valid and not duplicated.

If the tenant believes there is inaccurate data listed on his / her profile, he/ she is entitled to dispute the accuracy of the data. The credit bureau must log the dispute and investigate. The tenant and the estate agent will submit their credible evidence to support the listing or removal.

If you have signed a lease agreement, you are entitled to a copy signed by the landlord. Once the lease agreement has been accepted by the landlord you are bound to the agreement.
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2008/10/07 01:47:25 PM

Printha
Printha
Posts: 9
The lease was proposed to start on the 01/10/2008.
But around the 26/10/2008 I could not get a hold of them to cancel and on the 29/10/2008 they did call and I said I would NOT be taking the place. They say I am still liable for the deposit and October rent.

And today I recieve sms's and a letter of demand from TPN that I am default with regards to October rent?

Is this legal or is this simply bullying tactics by the agent?
edited by Printha on 10/7/2008
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2008/10/07 02:00:49 PM

Printha
Printha
Posts: 9
Also the only documents I recieved from the agent is for the lease? I assumed that they would use the information supplied on it would to validate my credit history, and that it is a proposal to rent.
I have to still recieve the counter-signed lease agreement, and secondly how do I know that they have not back-dated the signatures? No witnesses have signed on my behalf.
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2008/10/07 02:37:47 PM

Michelle
Michelle
Posts: 156
You certainly have a right to a copy of the signed lease agreement.

The lease does not have to be witnessed to make it valid.

Once the landlord has accepted the lease it becomes binding. You would have to follow the procedure according to the lease to cancel (If the lease allows for the tenant to cancel prior to the end date). Alternatively you are responsible for the deposit, rent and any other cost due as they become due.

The estate agent is entitled to demand payment once there is a lease agreement in place, if any monies due are outstanding. In fact it is the estate agents obligation to inform you that you are in breach of contract and demand payment. If payment remains unpaid the estate agent can cancel the lease and demand damages. Damages would include among other costs - rent until a suitable tenant is found.
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2008/10/07 03:13:50 PM

Printha
Printha
Posts: 9
I don't have any money for food/petrol right now hence my reason for cancelling the lease yet I am expected to pay a months' deposit/rent/admin/electricrity deposit etc.

Landlords demand and recieve all sorts deposits(key,months's rent,electricity) to safeguard themselves prior to a tenants occupation of the premise. Tenants have pay up a large amunt up front, but there are no guarantees to refunds. Yes it is stipulated that monies(in the lease) will be refunded, but what is the recourse should the landlord not follow through. My previous landlord refunded my deposit in small amounts of R300 whenever I called to query it. This is quite unfair as I had to pay a lumpsum upfront and if I pleaded financial difficulties(his reasons for refunding me in bits) I would not have been taken on as a tenant. My total deposit was R3500 and worthwhile pursuing legaling, as legal wuld have amounted to much more.
edited by Printha on 10/7/2008
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2008/10/07 03:47:40 PM

Michelle
Michelle
Posts: 156
It seems there are 2 separate issues here.
1. Lease agreement signed with Rent&Buy. My understanding is the lease agreement has been signed by both tenant and landlord. You landlord has a right to receive the payment you agreed to in the signed lease agreement. (deposit, October rent and any other monies due in terms of this agreement). This is his right and your obligation. You financial situation does not affect his right to payment and to demand payment.

2. You previous lease agreement. The Rental Housing Act provides that the tenant is entitled to a refund of their deposit within 7 days of expiry of the lease should there be no damages. And within 14 days of the repair of any damages - should there be damages. You have the right to approach the Rental Housing Tribunal should your previous landlord be tardy in the refund payment of your deposit. This however cannot be used as a defence by you for not paying any monies due to your new landlord.

By not paying your current landlord / estate agent you are putting your self at risk for a legal claim to damages and possibly being listed on the credit bureaux.
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2008/10/07 04:05:37 PM

Printha
Printha
Posts: 9
Yes, these are separate issues, I wasn't using previous the story of my previous landlord as an excuse for not following through with the lease but my frustration with system which safeguards landlords and not tenants. (and no there was absolutely no claims by my previous landlord of damage to property etc so the full refund was applicable)

But surely since I made an attempt to cancel the lease prior to the occupation period, should that not carry any weight? I have yet to recieve the lease back, I have been told it was signed by the landlord but have not recieved proof of that as yet.
edited by Printha on 10/7/2008
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2008/10/07 04:20:55 PM

Michelle
Michelle
Posts: 156
Understood. You are only able to cancel the lease agreement prior to it being accepted by the landlord - not prior to taking occupation. I would urge you to obtain a copy of the lease agreement from the agent.
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