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How do i ensure Landlord will return deposit ?


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5 minutes ago, circa02 said:

The first agency that starts doing deposit escrow before it becomes a government mandated scheme (UK etc) is onto a winner.

 

 

The first agency that tells their fee-paying clients not to steal from you with impunity is the first agency to become another foot massage outlet inside of a month.

 

This thread is like entering a zany alternative universe where nobody ever worked on commission or even ever heard about the concept.

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47 minutes ago, Mike Teavee said:

There is a small claims court & the threat of taking your landlord there might be enough to get something back, especially if he’s not being filing tax returns (960K pa is a lot of income to not file a return).

 

No idea how the process goes but have seen reports on here of people going through is so a quick search of the site might help…


Google: Thailand small claim court how to site:aseannow.com

Would require knowing the fully identity of the landlord not just his name is Zhang Zhang and id is CHIN12311231123,  a full copy of his passport as he won't have a Thai ID, ideally his latest entry stamp or permission to stay, and his contact details in his home country, and payment proof to his bank account. You rarely get this, agencies tell you think too mutt, and that they keep this information, but then they don't have it or won't share it, and for payment its either via the agent so they can deduct their 1 month deposit at source, or Zhang Zhang gives you his current Thai GF account number who's not listed on any contract. So unprofessional here, all emojis, and trust us...

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6 minutes ago, circa02 said:

That work sometimes if you pay a year up front.

The rental market might have changed now due to all the Russians here now, but in the past I would offer NO or very Low deposit.  If unacceptable to landlord I would just look for another property.  I also used to draft my own rental leases that included a clause that I could break the lease with one month's notice to the landlord in writing.

 

Never had any real trouble finding a landlord who would accept my terms...but cannot comment on the situation now....

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1 minute ago, LaosLover said:

The first agency that tells their fee-paying clients not to steal from you with impunity is the first agency to become another foot massage outlet inside of a month.

 

This thread is like entering a zany alternative universe where nobody ever worked on commission or even ever heard about the concept.

Deposit protection schemes have been successfully implemented in several countries, where the agent model remains commission based, here's some details of the UK's https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/housing/renting-privately/during-your-tenancy/check-your-landlord-has-protected-your-deposit/

 

In some markets the private sector is underwriting it until regulations follow Malaysia has one backed by AXA, allows the renter to forgo a deposit after a credit check, and landlord can claim for damages and unpaid bills from the insurer, as a side benefit the insurance company has does some due dilegence KYC on the landlord - system that you dont necessarily have access to, a win for everyone. Still commission based with nearly everything via agents.

 

I believe Germany has something in the middle too..

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That's all interesting to me, so thanks. I don't see anything like that happening in Thailand ever.

 

As a Chiang Mai-er, my apartment is unusable 10 weeks a year, due to smoke season. So toss on top that written off 20K deposit my actual monthly rent is a lot higher than the stated one. But I love my place and I love Nimman, so that's where my focus is. 

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3 hours ago, circa02 said:

Would require knowing the fully identity of the landlord not just his name is Zhang Zhang and id is CHIN12311231123,  a full copy of his passport as he won't have a Thai ID, ideally his latest entry stamp or permission to stay, and his contact details in his home country, and payment proof to his bank account. You rarely get this, agencies tell you think too mutt, and that they keep this information, but then they don't have it or won't share it, and for payment its either via the agent so they can deduct their 1 month deposit at source, or Zhang Zhang gives you his current Thai GF account number who's not listed on any contract. So unprofessional here, all emojis, and trust us...

If you're not able to take your landlord to court (Be very strange if you didn't have a photocopy of their main passport page as part of the lease agreement as you need this to do things like a TM30) then I'd recommend taking the agent to the small claims court, they're the ones that will take the deposit & issue a receipt make it there problem to get it back of the landlord if he doesn't pay. 

 

Assuming the lease agreement is in his name, it doesn't matter who's bank account you pay the rent into (I pay it into the agents account, but it is a Bricks & Mortar place) they're ultimate beneficiary so should be the ones paying tax etc... 

 

 

 

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5 hours ago, DonniePeverley said:
5 hours ago, Dan O said:

Didnt they change the rental laws to say they can only require 1 months deposit and 1 months rent a while back?

 

If you have to put that amount down for a deposit ask the rental company to put the deposit in an escrow account dated and identified for the conditions of withdrawl

 

Is this accurate? I find it hard to fathom a major agent in Bangkok would then move forward with this knowing it was not rite. Most condos i saw in this bracket were all asking the same. 

 

I will def research and ask the agent about putting the deposit in a 'escrow account' dated with conditions of withdrawel. 

Dan O is not fully correct - the Laws that were changed were for onwers of 5 or more units (basically Apartments - 1 month deposit / government rate electricity, very few follow the law anyway)... 

But.. this law is not relevant to individual owners renting out a Condo. 

 

Thus: 2 months deposit and 1 month rent up front is the norm. 

 

My experience is contrary to the experience of some others on here. 

I have always had my deposit returned.

 

Only once was the full deposit not fully returned (140,000 baht deposit), just under 10,000 baht was kept to replace a scratched glass top cooker (hob) and replace a dented fridge door - no complaints from me, the owner went to lengths to find the best price for replacements. 

The owners (Chinese Husband / Thai Wife - both well educated) also complimented us (my Wife and I) on the condition of the unit when we departed and under took a walk through together upon departure. 

 

Thus: While there are no guarantees... you can protect yourself with: 

- Lots of photographs before moving in. 

- Condition report signed by both of you. 

 

 

 

 

Ultimately, you cant protect yourself 100% and you have to trust your instincts when dealing with an owner. 

 

 

I had a huge fall out with the father of a student renting out my Condo. 

60,000 baht deposit, I kept about 50,000 baht for un-paid electricity bills. 

The students never responded to demands to pay the electricity, were always late with their rent etc. 

Not a big issue. I sold the unit to a new owner, we passed on the contract, signed by all parties and the transferred the 'remaining deposit' of approx 10,000 baht to the new oner (subtracting the electricity that I'd paid - with proof of bills and payment)... 

The father of the student was insistent that his daughter had paid the electricity herself but had no proof whatsoever (while I had proof of online payments - turns out the daughter friend was cheating her and pocketing the money instead of paying). 

We were contacted by the new owner a few months later complaining about the damage the students had caused to the condo.

 

In short - this father probably now tells people that owners do not return their deposit, a lot of people leave apartments and condo's in a mess. But there are also some rather shady landlords. 

 

Its hit n miss...  trust your instincts. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by richard_smith237
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3 hours ago, richard_smith237 said:

Dan O is not fully correct - the Laws that were changed were for onwers of 5 or more units (basically Apartments - 1 month deposit / government rate electricity, very few follow the law anyway)... 

But.. this law is not relevant to individual owners renting out a Condo. 

 

Thus: 2 months deposit and 1 month rent up front is the norm. 

 

My experience is contrary to the experience of some others on here. 

I have always had my deposit returned.

 

Only once was the full deposit not fully returned (140,000 baht deposit), just under 10,000 baht was kept to replace a scratched glass top cooker (hob) and replace a dented fridge door - no complaints from me, the owner went to lengths to find the best price for replacements. 

The owners (Chinese Husband / Thai Wife - both well educated) also complimented us (my Wife and I) on the condition of the unit when we departed and under took a walk through together upon departure. 

 

Thus: While there are no guarantees... you can protect yourself with: 

- Lots of photographs before moving in. 

- Condition report signed by both of you. 

 

 

 

 

Ultimately, you cant protect yourself 100% and you have to trust your instincts when dealing with an owner. 

 

 

I had a huge fall out with the father of a student renting out my Condo. 

60,000 baht deposit, I kept about 50,000 baht for un-paid electricity bills. 

The students never responded to demands to pay the electricity, were always late with their rent etc. 

Not a big issue. I sold the unit to a new owner, we passed on the contract, signed by all parties and the transferred the 'remaining deposit' of approx 10,000 baht to the new oner (subtracting the electricity that I'd paid - with proof of bills and payment)... 

The father of the student was insistent that his daughter had paid the electricity herself but had no proof whatsoever (while I had proof of online payments - turns out the daughter friend was cheating her and pocketing the money instead of paying). 

We were contacted by the new owner a few months later complaining about the damage the students had caused to the condo.

 

In short - this father probably now tells people that owners do not return their deposit, a lot of people leave apartments and condo's in a mess. But there are also some rather shady landlords. 

 

Its hit n miss...  trust your instincts. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I believe my comment was a question and not a statement but thanks for clarifying the change as I knew something had changed.

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8 hours ago, Etaoin Shrdlu said:

I think those regulations only apply to landlords that own five or more properties. I think it is also probably difficult and expensive to enforce as a tenant.

 

There is also the issue of the fee for the agent, which is usually the equivalent of one month's rent. If a landlord only receives one month's deposit and then has to pay one month's equivalent to the agent, the landlord then effectively has no security deposit. Yes, that's the cost of doing business as a landlord, but it means that the landlord only receives eleven months' rent for a 12 month term. That's a significant hit to the return on the investment.

Saying a landlord only receives 11 months rent in your example is not the complete story.  Most landlords factor the cost of the commission paid to agents into the rental calculations as a cost of doing business. So while they may only receive 11 payments they have not lost anything by paying the agent , its passed along to the renter in the monthly payments

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4 hours ago, Dan O said:

Saying a landlord only receives 11 months rent in your example is not the complete story.  Most landlords factor the cost of the commission paid to agents into the rental calculations as a cost of doing business. So while they may only receive 11 payments they have not lost anything by paying the agent , its passed along to the renter in the monthly payments

That's right. It isn't the complete story.

 

Competition drives rents down to levels that provide a poor return on investment. Landlords have very little pricing power. The landlord also has to pay for common fees, insurance, taxes and also potentially deal with extended periods of time when the unit isn't rented. Also factor in that condos in Thailand often tend to be depreciating assets, at least in inflation-adjusted  terms, unlike in the west where housing tends to appreciate over time. Thailand is really a renter's market.

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1 hour ago, Etaoin Shrdlu said:

That's right. It isn't the complete story.

 

Competition drives rents down to levels that provide a poor return on investment. Landlords have very little pricing power. The landlord also has to pay for common fees, insurance, taxes and also potentially deal with extended periods of time when the unit isn't rented. Also factor in that condos in Thailand often tend to be depreciating assets, at least in inflation-adjusted  terms, unlike in the west where housing tends to appreciate over time. Thailand is really a renter's market.

Those are all issues an investor takes or should take into consideration when the decide to buy a property as a rental investment. if they dont do their homework and dont know the market its their own fault and no one elses. But that's no excuse to try to justify keeping a deposit or claiming they are shorted somehow because they pay an agent to manage the property. 

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Rent from a Westerner landlord, then you are on an equal footing. Trying to recover a security deposit from a Thai is an exercise in futility.

My first year in Chiang Mai, I paid one month's security deposit. I then said I have proved I will look after the apartment as if it is my own. I've paid my rent before the due date every month. Do you want to keep a good tenant?

From then on, I paid no security deposit on the lease, for the next nine years.

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16 hours ago, LaosLover said:

Anecdotally, my agent told me that Chinese landlords are more likely to return a deposit than Thai ones. She became a bit of a pal. She told me that maybe one person in four ever gets their deposits back. That may be situational. Look at my location. Lots of transients, lots of opportunities to stiff a tenant.

An agent saying that would concern me.

 

I always got my condo deposit back without any problem - and every one of my landlords in Bangkok has been Thai. The problem with a landlord from China is what if they happen to be in China when you move out of the condo and are waiting for the return of your deposit?

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22 hours ago, LaosLover said:

I never got my deposit back. My realty agent made a couple of calls, but that was that. Since the condo owner pays her fee, she didn't push back too hard.

 

Most people I have talked to have not gotten their deposits back. Everyone advises me to stiff them on the last month's rent and depart a day or two early to avoid a confrontation.

You are precisely the reason that more and more deposits are held back... there are more renters "stiffing" landlords than there are landlords keeping deposits... 

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6 hours ago, Lacessit said:

Rent from a Westerner landlord, then you are on an equal footing. Trying to recover a security deposit from a Thai is an exercise in futility.

My first year in Chiang Mai, I paid one month's security deposit. I then said I have proved I will look after the apartment as if it is my own. I've paid my rent before the due date every month. Do you want to keep a good tenant?

From then on, I paid no security deposit on the lease, for the next nine years.

You are an exception to the rule... most renters do not respect leases which has led to landlords keeping deposits... which came first... the chicken or the egg.

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3 hours ago, Skipalongcassidy said:

Let me ask you renters/lessees what do you think the overall reason that landlords do not return deposits... could it be because their tenants do not fulfill their lease agreement?  Or is the sinister landlord?  Keeping deposits is not profitable... keeping good tenants is. 

They regard it as key money. They keep it when the tenant has moved out so how does that keep good tenants?

 

If you pay the last two months the Landlord likely stiffs you, if you don't and sneak out you stiff the landlord for the utility bills - which is their justification for not accepting you not pay last two months in lieu of deposit return.

 

People saying they have always got their deposit back should share their secret. I got my deposit back once after a very nasty argument in which he accused me of changing the locks and when I told him that was BS and he knew it his reply was a "I pay poleet [so what are you going to do about it]" His wife's intervention was the reason I got it back.

 

Honest Landlords exist, but seem to be the minority. I don't doubt I will get my deposit back because I am dealing with high standard of conduct people, but that is so rare that it has hindered my moving.

Edited by mokwit
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This is an easy question to answer.  Maintain your rental, pay rent on time, don't damage the unit and you will likely get a full refund of your security deposit.

 

Don't put out your cigarettes on the furniture.  Don't pop off you beer tops on the wood furniture or granite countertops.  Don't urinate on the mattress.  Hire maids to clean weekly.

 

Offer to pay a year rent in advance with one month security deposit.  Landlords don't want to keep your deposit.  But they have to spend their time, energy and money to fix damages which often time are much higher than the deposit.

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1 minute ago, Mark Nothing said:

don't damage the unit and you will likely get a full refund of your security deposit.

Assuming your Landlord is an honest person rather than a deposit thief.

2 minutes ago, Mark Nothing said:

Landlords don't want to keep your deposit.

That doesn't seem to be the case.

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19 hours ago, mokwit said:

 

 

Honest Landlords exist, but seem to be the minority. 

As a landlord I can tell you that honest reliable renters are the minority here in the LOS... I have not had one renter who has fulfilled their lease agreement... they just take off in the middle of the night.

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19 hours ago, Lacessit said:

I have been a landlord as well, in Australia. My first tenant was brilliant, the second OK. The third tenant I finished up evicting, after he decided to rebuild his motorbike in one of the bedrooms, ruining the carpet with sump oil. Didn't even have the brains to put down a protector.

The first two tenants I returned the whole bond immediately, the last I deducted the cost of replacing the carpet.

From the stories I hear in Thailand, keeping the security deposit/bond seems to occur frequently, without justification.

You hear that from nomads who do not think that they should have to honor their lease agreement and have limited understanding about what damages entail... lost rent on a lease that is not fulfilled is "damage" not just physical damage to the property.

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19 minutes ago, Skipalongcassidy said:

I am glad that you have never been and never will be one of my tenants...

It seems you are in the wrong business and sound like the kind of Landlord I would give a very wide berth to.

 

I have rented from the same family since 1999 without issue. Over that time a number of things have been replaced through wear and tear or needed renovation without dispute.

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30 minutes ago, Skipalongcassidy said:

As a landlord I can tell you that honest reliable renters are the minority here in the LOS... I have not had one renter who has fulfilled their lease agreement... they just take off in the middle of the night.

Again, you do not know your business.

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