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Wednesday, January 04, 2017

Dubai tenant wary about paying landlord’s supposed power of attorney

Dubai tenant wary about paying landlord’s supposed power of attorney Apartments in Jumeirah Lakes Towers. Mona Al Marzooqi / The National Dubai tenant wary about paying landlord’s supposed power of attorney Mario Volpi January 4, 2017 Updated: January 4, 2017 07:22 PM Related Shanghai’s 430kph train benefits wider economy Shanghai’s 430kph train benefits wider economy Mario Volpi: Jobless Dubai tenant cannot renew lease until he finds employment Mario Volpi: How can UAE landlord resolve an appliance dispute with her tenant? Mario Volpi: Can Dubai property investor penalise developer for delayed off-plan purchase? Mario Volpi: What can Dubai landlord do if tenant does not vacate apartment that is up for sale? Topics: Rent Homefront I am looking to rent an apartment in JLT. The broker says that the owner is Pakistani and lives in Pakistan. He has given a power of attorney (PoA) to another Pakistani, authorising him to undertake all transactions on his behalf (I am yet to see the PoA). He said that the rental payments have to be in the name of the PoA holder and that the PoA document specifically mentions this. My question is, even if it is stated in the PoA document, is it allowed? And would you advise undertaking this transaction? RA, Dubai When dealing with a power of attorney, one has to be certain that the documents are indeed real and that all appears to be in order. Make sure you see a true copy of the document. If the PoA document was executed here in Dubai, it will have the proper Dubai Courts stamp on it. If it was attested in Pakistan, it has to have the UAE embassy stamps from Pakistan on it in addition to the stamps from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation here in Dubai – this is to verify the whole document. If you have trouble getting hold of the document or feel that all is not what it seems, then my advice would be not to proceed with the let. There are of course legitimate reasons that an owner would wish for someone else to receive monies on their behalf. The PoA is there to facilitate the transaction by means of signature and the like, and this sometimes also involves receiving monies. But why can’t the owner receive the money (rent) directly through a local bank (if he has an account here) or through an overseas bank transfer? I stress that you have to be sure that this transaction is legitimate – otherwise you could find yourself being chased for the rent by the actual owner if the PoA turns out to be a fraud. Where possible, always deal directly with the owner – only then can you be sure the rental monies you are paying actually go to the landlord. I am a tenant in International City in Dubai and I finished my contract in November last year. However, my landlord is refusing to return my security deposit. I cleaned and fixed the apartment and have already moved to another flat, but he is telling me that he has lost rental income and he wants me to pay a charge. He is also accusing me of a violation, but I did not receive any violation in my two years living there. He is charging me Dh2,000 a day because I did not give him the key. I put down a Dh5,000 deposit but he is now claiming that I owe him Dh66,100. I don’t know why he is claiming such an amount. I’ve made all my payments. JG, Dubai If you have been a model tenant and have cleaned and fixed all necessary jobs required to hand back the property as it was given to you, then you are entitled to your deposit back in full. I assume from your email that you did not leave earlier than your contract allows, because some contracts have a penalty if a tenant leaves early. If all is in order but the landlord still demands money from you and does not return the deposit, I would advise you to file a case at the rental committee to get your deposit back. "......... Mario Volpi: What can Dubai landlord do if tenant does not vacate apartment that is up for sale? The Dubai landlord is in a bind as the tenant has not been replying to messages, emails or phone calls. Reem Mohammed / The National Mario Volpi: What can Dubai landlord do if tenant does not vacate apartment that is up for sale? Mario Volpi December 7, 2016 Updated: December 10, 2016 04:27 PM Related Dubai tenant wary about paying landlord’s supposed power of attorney Dubai tenant wary about paying landlord’s supposed power of attorney Mario Volpi: Jobless Dubai tenant cannot renew lease until he finds employment Mario Volpi: How can UAE landlord resolve an appliance dispute with her tenant? Mario Volpi: Can Dubai property investor penalise developer for delayed off-plan purchase? Dubai cracks down on rogue property agents Topics: Homefront We bought an apartment that is currently rented. An eviction notice was send to the tenant by the previous owner, registered in the court and sent by courier. The reason for the eviction is our intention to sell the apartment. I have been trying to contact the tenant but she does not reply to our messages, emails or phone calls. The rental agreement expires very soon and is the same date as the eviction notice that was served a year ago. If the tenant does not vacate apartment in time I am in a really uncomfortable situation. What can I do? AK, Dubai In theory, the tenant in situ has received the eviction notice in the correct manner and for the correct period (12 months). The only problem I foresee is that if the tenant refuses to leave, you are then left without an alternative but to file a case at the rental dispute committee. However, the outcome may not be 100 per cent what you expect. The judge will have to decide if the tenant should vacate as per the original notice or it is also possible the judge may allow the tenant to stay one more year and request that you (as the new owner), send your own 12 months’ notice. The outcome is not predictable at all. Every year I have a rental dispute with my landlord’s agency in terms of increasing the rent. I normally wait for couple of months and then deposit the cheques at the Real Estate Regulatory Authority (Rera) with a nominal increase of rent. This year too they have demanded an increased rent, which I think was within the Rera index at that point of time. However, they refused any negotiation. The tenancy is in my wife’s name and she is outside the country now but keeps travelling to Dubai. The landlord’s agency, when communicating with me through email, has said it filed a case against me three months ago. It has never given me the case number. Now it is almost six months since my tenancy contract expired. I don’t want to continue with this property or the landlord’s agency. So how can I file a vacating notice as they say they have a case against me. I am fine with paying the rent that I owe. Should I wait for the eviction procedure or go to Rera? Additionally they have not done any maintenance on the property during my six years of living here. AS, Dubai If you wish to terminate the agreement, the following should be adhered to: 90 days before the renewal of the agreement, you should inform the landlord (in writing) that you do not wish to renew. The 90-day rule is there to inform either party of any changes to the contract. Not wishing to renew would be a material change (in my opinion), which is why it is important to give this amount of notice. You mention that it is almost six months since your contract expired but any contract automatically renews unless terminated so I presume you have been living in the property without payment of rent, which is why the landlord is saying that a case has been filed against you. I suggest you pay the outstanding rent owed as you have done before and lodge the cheques with Rera. Check the contract to see what it says about terminating early as most contracts state a two-month penalty clause to leave before expiration date. If you do not wish to pay any penalty by leaving midway through, I suggest you leave at the end of this current term but state this fact by giving the landlord the 90-day notice. In the meantime, I would just sit tight and wait to see what happens with their case, no need to file anything yourself because you want to leave anyway, correct? With reference to the non-maintenance, I presume this is the case because either you have taken care of this or there have been no maintenance issues to sort during this time. Either way, the landlord does have a duty of care to you to maintain and or repair the property as necessary. Mario Volpi is the chief sales officer for Kensington Exclusive Properties and has worked in the property industry for the past 32 years in London and Dubai. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and they do not reflect in any way those of the institutions to which he is affiliated. It does not constitute legal advice and is provided for information only. Please send any questions to mario.volpi@kensington.ae. Mario Volpi is the chief sales officer for Kensington Exclusive Properties and has worked in the property industry for the past 32 years in London and Dubai. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and they do not reflect in any way those of the institutions to which he is affiliated. It does not constitute legal advice and is provided for information only. Please send any questions to mario.volpi@kensington.ae. business@thenational.ae Follow The National’s Business section on Twitter

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