Negotiating a lease on a home can be complicated, especially when you’ve just arrived in a new city. If you are new to renting in Hong Kong, here’s some advice from the Residential Leasing & Relocation Services team at Jones Lang LaSalle Limited (JLL).
#1 Request upgrades to the apartment before you sign a lease. This could be anything from professional cleaning, repainting, or the installation or removal of kitchen appliances and built-in furniture.
#2 Get your keys early. If your chosen flat is unoccupied, ask if you can get the keys up to one week before your tenancy begins. This is by no means a given though!
#3 Inspections are important. If the landlord hasn’t recorded the condition of the apartment before you move in, it will be much harder for you to prove that you’re not to blame for any broken fixtures and fittings found after you’ve lived there for a while.
#4 Review your break lease clause. A standard tenancy agreement in Hong Kong lasts 24 months, but it may be possible to negotiate a break clause. After 12 months, you can give two or three months’ notice that you plan to move out. That means you are legally bound to pay rent for a minimum of 14 months.
#5 Inquire about a rent-free period. In return for agreeing to the full rental price, your agent may be able to negotiate a rent-free period of between one to four weeks.
For more information go to jllresidential.com/hk
See more in our Living in Hong Kong section:
This article first appeared in the City Guide 2018 issue of Expat Living magazine. Subscribe now so you never miss an issue.