Friday, June 4, 2010

Sub-letting room? Grace period to register ends soon

THE Housing Board yesterday reminded flat owners who sub-let rooms before Feb 1 that they have until July 31 to register their tenants' details with the HDB.

All flat owners are now required to register the sub-letting arrangements, under a new rule introduced earlier this year.

From Feb 1, anyone sub-letting a room has been given seven days to register, but a six-month grace period expiring July 31 was granted for those who had sub-let before the beginning of February.

In all, 20,258 flat owners had registered their subletting of rooms with the HDB, as of April 30.

That figure includes flat owners with sub-letting tenancies commencing both before and from Feb 1, the board said.

Part of the reason the new rule was introduced was to try to curb the worsening activities of loan sharks.

Some people who borrow from loan sharks and who rent rooms in HDB flats have been known to use their former addresses when borrowing.

That leaves a flat's new occupants to face possible harassment from the illegal moneylenders.

The rule was implemented to track those who borrow from loan sharks.

'There is no need to seek prior approval for subletting of rooms,' the HDB said.

However, flat owners are required to notify the HDB when they renew or terminate their sub-letting contracts, as well as when a new sub-let starts.

Registration can be done online or at any HDB branch office.

The board said that those who flout the rule may be fined up to $3,000. For recalcitrant cases, compulsory acquisition of their flats could be carried out.

Source: Straits Times, 4 Jun 2010

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