Thursday, July 2, 2009

40 Tenants May Stay On At The Grangeford Under New Leases

Source : Channel NewsAsia, 30 June 2009

After a near month-long tussle, some tenants at The Grangeford may stay on at the condominium after all.

About 40 of them have expressed interest to do so under the leasing agent, Savills, although the actual number could be higher as some enter into joint-leases with others to rent whole apartment units.

Grangeford condominium

Residents had been given till 5pm on June 30 to vacate the premises after the previous landlord, Ideal Accommodation, got into trouble with the authorities for converting 140 apartments into 600 rooms.

The leasing agent, Savills, is still tallying the total number of tenants who have moved out.

The condominium owner, Cove Developments, said a few tenants have requested for an extension to move due to various reasons such as travelling, and it is considering these on a case-by-case basis.

Authorities were roped in to ensure those leaving did not take more than they came with.

Tenants told Channel NewsAsia they were warned by management that a police report would be made if they took furniture that the apartments had come furnished with.

Out of those who moved, some were unhappy with terms offered by the new leasing agent, which requires them to rent an entire apartment instead of individual rooms.

40 units have been offered at rates ranging from S$2,600 to S$3,500 per month, with a minimum lease period of six months.

Others just had enough of the hassle. Rizky Priandika, an Indonesian student, said: "There are already many problems here so we need to move out already."

Kentaro Fujiyama, an expat working in Singapore for the first time, said: "I cannot live under the contract with them. I haven't got my deposit back and the previous landlord didn't even say sorry."

Another Indonesian student, George Mason, said: "I'm really pissed off now. I've just started staying here for one month and the contract said one year for me."

Cove Developments said the tenancy agreements between Ideal Accommodation and its tenants are a private matter.

At least 10 tenants told Channel NewsAsia they plan to file complaints with the Small Claims Tribunal for deposits ranging from S$1,200 to S$1,800 paid to the previous landlord. Ideal Accommodation could not be reached for comment.

Cove Developments has declined Channel NewsAsia's request to film the interior of the condominium and the tearing down of the illegal partitions. It said that with more people expected to move out on Tuesday, it might be unsafe for the media to be around.

But it added that it is on track to completing the refurbishment of all the apartments by the July 27 deadline. - CNA/vm

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