Generally, you will need a lawyer to assist you when buying or selling property, or if you are a landlord or tenant entering into a tenancy agreement.
Conveyancing: Under the Residential Property only Singaporeans are allowed to purchase landed residential property. Foreigners who wish to do so will first have to obtain approval from the Controller of Residential Property. The conveyancing process is complicated, and you will gain comfort from having an expert lawyer guide you through the process.
Landlord and Tenant: There is no comprehensive law governing landlord and tenant relations in Singapore, and everything depends upon the contract. Most landlord and tenant disputes are resolved through mediation or alternative dispute resolution, usually under groups such as the Consumer Association of Singapore (CASE) and Singapore Mediation Centre (SMC). A formal court proceeding can also be utilised, but this usually takes longer and is more expensive. The Housing and Development Board (HDB) does not mediate in case of dispute.
One option, if mediation does not work, is to file a claim with the Small Claims Tribunal. This can be done without a lawyer, and is usually more cost-efficient for claims below $10,000. Most forms of landlord and tenant disputes, such as claims for deposits and unpaid rent, are resolved here.
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