Is there anyway to rescind a newly signed lease agreement?

Uraeus

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May 26, 2010
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270
I am currently in a debacle in which I want to cancel the lease
I renewed on friday. The rent increase is not justified and I want to get
out of there, FAST. I can afford it, but I dont want to pay that for what I got.

I am going to contact the rental tribunal tomorrow, and hope that they say I can
recall the signed agreement, since it was done on monday.

I spent the day searching for the law of contract in south africa, to see if there is a
similar 72 hour / 5 day cool down time until the agreement becomes solid... but didnt
find one that really pertained to leases.

I have another post complaining about my rent increase.. I guess I woke up too late :(

If there are any folks out there who have done similar stupid things and got out of it without too much harm, please do tell!
 

BrokenLink

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Best thing is to give the landlord notice as soon as possible so that he can start finding a new tenant. With the consumer protection act you can give 20 business day notice to cancel any lease, but that only comes into affect in April i think.

Having a lot of tenants myself, if your rent includes electricity, then 10% increase is justified. With the very low capital growth the last few years rent also needs to go up, since people wont just buy property for capital increases and actually need to make some money from the rent. But yeah they should definitely keep the property in better condition.
 

LazyLion

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try asking him nicely if he will let you out of the agreement.
 

Uraeus

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try asking him nicely if he will let you out of the agreement.

I have read through my lease like 100 times, no exit clause at all. Went to the realtor today and they said they will contact the owner, but they doubt they will let me out of it.
It really is bull****, I really was half asleep when I signed it. And yes I know how much of an idiot I am.

Looking at the owners point of view, why would they want to let someone go when they already have a signature, when they run the risk of not finding anyone for the next month.

The thing I dont understand is in the lease it clearly states that you need to give them written notification 2 months before the lease expires in order to renew.
That would imply that since I didnt contact them and they didnt advertise (I checked) that they werent intending on re-renting.

Well I'm going to hold so huge thumbs and pray that there is some goodness out there for idiots like me, and that they are merciful.

Side Note: Any hints on getting landlord frustrated enough to kick you out without them blacklisting you?
 

Pitbull

Verboten
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Apr 8, 2006
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63,445
I am currently in a debacle in which I want to cancel the lease
I renewed on friday. The rent increase is not justified and I want to get
out of there, FAST. I can afford it, but I dont want to pay that for what I got.

I am going to contact the rental tribunal tomorrow, and hope that they say I can
recall the signed agreement, since it was done on monday.

I spent the day searching for the law of contract in south africa, to see if there is a
similar 72 hour / 5 day cool down time until the agreement becomes solid... but didnt
find one that really pertained to leases.

I have another post complaining about my rent increase.. I guess I woke up too late :(

If there are any folks out there who have done similar stupid things and got out of it without too much harm, please do tell!

Simple,

Tell him you realised that you can't afford it and it's best if he finds someone else. He is the one that needs to find another person to rent the place. It's better he lets you out and get someone else than be stuck with someone who can't pay. Tell him that and move. If you can't afford it you can't afford it. even if you earn R 35k a month there is no way he can prove that you can afford it or not ;)
 

Uraeus

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Joined
May 26, 2010
Messages
270
Simple,

Tell him you realised that you can't afford it and it's best if he finds someone else. He is the one that needs to find another person to rent the place. It's better he lets you out and get someone else than be stuck with someone who can't pay. Tell him that and move. If you can't afford it you can't afford it. even if you earn R 35k a month there is no way he can prove that you can afford it or not ;)

Blacklisted much?
That is the delima. You cant just stop paying, since then you get blacklisted..and we all know that that aint pretty. This is what is freaking me out, there are no exit clauses, only renewals! i.e. If you sign for a duration of time, you
need to pay rent for that duration of time. Legally I have to pay every cent since I said I would, the fact that I changed my mind doesnt affect them, i.e. I can winge and moan, if I dont pay then they
just get a court order to deduct straight from my salary and they will most probably blacklist me in the process and then I'm royally screwed.

I can definitely say this is a case of wisdom, i.e. you only get it once it is too late.

I have had contact with the rental tribunal.. Trying to explain my situation was not pleasant. I will be contacting them again tomorrow,
as far as I understand the ruling of the tribunal supersedes the agreements made in a lease, so if they say 1 months notice, then I will jump for joy... minus the cancellation 'fee'
 

Pitbull

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Blacklisted much?
That is the delima. You cant just stop paying, since then you get blacklisted..and we all know that that aint pretty. This is what is freaking me out, there are no exit clauses, only renewals! i.e. If you sign for a duration of time, you
need to pay rent for that duration of time. Legally I have to pay every cent since I said I would, the fact that I changed my mind doesnt affect them, i.e. I can winge and moan, if I dont pay then they
just get a court order to deduct straight from my salary and they will most probably blacklist me in the process and then I'm royally screwed.

I can definitely say this is a case of wisdom, i.e. you only get it once it is too late.

I have had contact with the rental tribunal.. Trying to explain my situation was not pleasant. I will be contacting them again tomorrow,
as far as I understand the ruling of the tribunal supersedes the agreements made in a lease, so if they say 1 months notice, then I will jump for joy... minus the cancellation 'fee'

Bwahahaha

Blacklisted for telling the supplier he can't afford the product anymore thus before he takes delivery he would like to cancel the deal?

This is exactly the same thing. He signed a new lease but then realizes he won't be able to afford the new rates. So BEFORE the new lease kicks in he tells the owner he can't afford it and he is going to move out. The owner will have to find someone else. Pls explain to me how you are going to get someone blacklisted? Even better pls explain to me if this goes to court that you are going to prove as an owner that this guy who signed the lease can afford the agreement? He wants out before the agreement kicks in it's simple, he states he can't afford it and the owner will have to make another plan. Simple as that. He can't blacklist him for shyt, if he does I'm sure some lawyer would take this case on a contingency base since victory is a certainty :eek:
 

LazyLion

King of de Jungle
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If he realises that a) Your heart is no longer in this lease and b) your cannot actually afford it, then it is in his interests to let you out of this. There is nothing worse for a landlord than having tenants who do not want to be in the place. Not saying you would do anything to damage the place, but he realises the risks. Better to have someone in there that wants to be there. Unhappy tenants can make a landlord's life a living hell.
 

Uraeus

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Joined
May 26, 2010
Messages
270
Bwahahaha

Blacklisted for telling the supplier he can't afford the product anymore thus before he takes delivery he would like to cancel the deal?

This is exactly the same thing. He signed a new lease but then realizes he won't be able to afford the new rates. So BEFORE the new lease kicks in he tells the owner he can't afford it and he is going to move out. The owner will have to find someone else. Pls explain to me how you are going to get someone blacklisted? Even better pls explain to me if this goes to court that you are going to prove as an owner that this guy who signed the lease can afford the agreement? He wants out before the agreement kicks in it's simple, he states he can't afford it and the owner will have to make another plan. Simple as that. He can't blacklist him for shyt, if he does I'm sure some lawyer would take this case on a contingency base since victory is a certainty :eek:

Awesome, I have to love your confidence. If the CPA was in effect I would be more confident about these matters, i.e. 20 business day notice period.
All i can say is, CPA for the win! Bring it On! It is frikken 2011 now, the CPA was first brought about in 2008, takes government forever to do things. In fact, the CPA was meant to be effective from late October 2010, in which
case I would be 100%.

I think I'm going to have to find that lawyer..although I will then have to pay for the landlords lawyer as well.

If this goes to court, the judge will look at the defendant and say "Is that your signature on that document? Why did you sign in purple crayon? Did you read the document?".
At which point the case is closed and I have to pay anyway and being a couple grand lighter.
 

Uraeus

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May 26, 2010
Messages
270
If he realises that a) Your heart is no longer in this lease and b) your cannot actually afford it, then it is in his interests to let you out of this. There is nothing worse for a landlord than having tenants who do not want to be in the place. Not saying you would do anything to damage the place, but he realises the risks. Better to have someone in there that wants to be there. Unhappy tenants can make a landlord's life a living hell.

Why should the landlord care what the tenants are like? As long as they pay on time and the deposit is up to date, they can do what they want to the place. I.e. Things break, then repairs come out of the deposit. If there is change, then the
tenant (previous) gets extra lunch money. If there isnt enough money, then the employer can be sought in which case they will take repair money straight from salary. It is win win for landlord, i.e. good tenant => place stays the same,
bad tenant => Fix crap they broke and make it look better.

I am hoping I do not have to resort to the latter. This whole thread sounds like me whining I know.

Thanks for the feedback folks, greatly appreciated.
 
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LazyLion

King of de Jungle
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Why should the landlord care what the tenants are like? As long as they pay on time and the deposit is up to date, they can do what they want to the place. I.e. Things break, then repairs come out of the deposit. If there is change, then the
tenant (previous) gets extra lunch money. If there isnt enough money, then the employer can be sought in which case they will take repair money straight from salary. It is win win for landlord, i.e. good tenant => place stays the same,
bad tenant => Fix crap they broke and make it look better.

I am hoping I do not have to resort to the latter. This whole thread sounds like me whining I know.

Thanks for the feedback folks, greatly appreciated.

You have never been a landlord, have you? Fixing things takes time and money. If the landlord is constantly tied up at one of his properties, then he does not have the time to oversee his other properties. It is a massive headache to have to rush out once a week to the same property to fix the little things. You ask property renters what is their major hassle in life and they will tell you. Having to run around organising people to fix stuff. No, far better to just have people in there who are happy.

Anyway, it's worth a shot. If it doesn't work, then at least you tried to ask in a nice manner. You can't say you didn't try.
 

Nerfherder

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Tell him you lost your job or are getting retrenched.

He can me an arse and make you pay but he knows that the best thing to do is get another tennant before you default.
Thats the logical thing for him to do.

I just got in to a lease and the next week we find out that the previous tennant paid half of what we paid.

The place is in a bit of a mess and loads of stuff needs to be fixed, I'm basically going to pester the owner and agent untill that place is brand new (or they drop the rent)
 

Uraeus

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You have never been a landlord, have you? Fixing things takes time and money. If the landlord is constantly tied up at one of his properties, then he does not have the time to oversee his other properties. It is a massive headache to have to rush out once a week to the same property to fix the little things. You ask property renters what is their major hassle in life and they will tell you. Having to run around organising people to fix stuff. No, far better to just have people in there who are happy.

Anyway, it's worth a shot. If it doesn't work, then at least you tried to ask in a nice manner. You can't say you didn't try.

Nope, I have not been a landlord, nor would I want to be one. It is just not pleasant. As soon as you start 'earning' money from all the rent, SARS ,milks most
of it anyway. I rather do my own job :)

Uhm, I'm hoping they have the same train of thought that you do, hehe. I am holding
thumbs that I am going to get a pleasant call later today, in which case I will only have to pay penalty 'admin' fees (1/2 months rent the buggers!).

I am holding thumbs that they dont delay the CPA for another 6 months, i.e. if it comes into effect on 1 April, then I can be out on the 30 April (20 business days notice). So worst case scenerio I get stuck with staying there two months.

Please government, just sign the CPA into law already!
 

Drunkard #1

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Bwahahaha

Blacklisted for telling the supplier he can't afford the product anymore thus before he takes delivery he would like to cancel the deal?

This is exactly the same thing. He signed a new lease but then realizes he won't be able to afford the new rates. So BEFORE the new lease kicks in he tells the owner he can't afford it and he is going to move out. The owner will have to find someone else. Pls explain to me how you are going to get someone blacklisted? Even better pls explain to me if this goes to court that you are going to prove as an owner that this guy who signed the lease can afford the agreement? He wants out before the agreement kicks in it's simple, he states he can't afford it and the owner will have to make another plan. Simple as that. He can't blacklist him for shyt, if he does I'm sure some lawyer would take this case on a contingency base since victory is a certainty :eek:

Your two faced tactics work both ways - I know, I'm a landlord. We'll say, "sure, move out", but never say, "consider the lease cancelled", then once you're out and the unit is safe from damage and PIE Act squatters, we go to our attorneys and tell then to sue you for the remaining lease THAT YOU SIGNED.;) I've done it before, and if they don't pay, they get a judgement and a blacklisting.

People these days think that stupidity or fickleness are grounds to terminate a contract. They soon find out that the courts take a different view.

As for the CPA, it may help tenants, but not as much as most would hope. The 10% cancellation fee on a lease can range from R 500 (1 month left on a cheap lease) - R 40 000 (23 months left on a costly lease). Not exactly a cheap escape for the consumer.

Uraeus, read schedule 2 of the CPA. Not all pre-existing agreements are protected by the act.
 
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Uraeus

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270
Tell him you lost your job or are getting retrenched.

He can me an arse and make you pay but he knows that the best thing to do is get another tennant before you default.
Thats the logical thing for him to do.

I just got in to a lease and the next week we find out that the previous tennant paid half of what we paid.

The place is in a bit of a mess and loads of stuff needs to be fixed, I'm basically going to pester the owner and agent untill that place is brand new (or they drop the rent)

Surely you will need to provide proof of retrenchment? Or if you are retrenched, they can still try to take off your account.
"Oh, missed a payment?.. pay this penalty fee..oh? No more money? Have a Blacklisting. Oh, got money but dont want to pay? Lets goto court and you pay for all the fees,
lets just hope it doesn't last too long.."

So in the end, they can make you pay if they are desperate enough.. if they have a heart (a brain / the nerve) they will be kind :)

It sucks to find out about the tenant before you paying half.. that is just harsh.
 

Uraeus

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Your two faced tactics work both ways - I know, I'm a landlord. We'll say, "sure, move out", but never say, "consider the lease cancelled", then once you're out and the unit is safe from damage and PIE Act squatters, we go to our attorneys and tell then to sue you for the remaining lease THAT YOU SIGNED.;) I've done it before, and if they don't pay, they get a judgement and a blacklisting.

People these days think that stupidity or fickleness are grounds to terminate a contract. They soon find out that the courts take a different view.

As for the CPA, it may help tenants, but not as much as most would hope. The 10% cancellation fee on a lease can range from R 500 (1 month left on a cheap lease) - R 40 000 (23 months left on a costly lease). Not exactly a cheap escape for the consumer.

Agreed, thanks for your point of view :) That is what I had in mind. I.e. if it does come to a lease cancellation, you have to be an idiot
not to sign an agreement saying so. If both parties get out will minimal harm, then its all good. Not fun to get so nasty and ruin peoples days/lives.

Sheesh for the cancellation fee, taking a >=24 month lease, OMW for that!I was also not aware of the lease going to month to month after the lease expires, at least after the CPA :)
 

Dolby

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If he realises that a) Your heart is no longer in this lease and b) your cannot actually afford it, then it is in his interests to let you out of this. There is nothing worse for a landlord than having tenants who do not want to be in the place. Not saying you would do anything to damage the place, but he realises the risks. Better to have someone in there that wants to be there. Unhappy tenants can make a landlord's life a living hell.

+1
 

Drunkard #1

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Agreed, thanks for your point of view :) That is what I had in mind. I.e. if it does come to a lease cancellation, you have to be an idiot
not to sign an agreement saying so. If both parties get out will minimal harm, then its all good. Not fun to get so nasty and ruin peoples days/lives.

Sheesh for the cancellation fee, taking a >=24 month lease, OMW for that!I was also not aware of the lease going to month to month after the lease expires, at least after the CPA :)

Well that's exactly it; if you ruin your landlords day, or leave him with unpaid rent and a R 4 000 cleaning bill, he is going to chase you to the ends of the earth, and normally has the funding to follow through. On the other hand, if you find a new tenant for him, and make sure he loses nothing on the deal, then he has incurred no loss, and cannot legally sue you for anything.
 

Tacet

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On the other hand, if you find a new tenant for him, and make sure he loses nothing on the deal, then he has incurred no loss, and cannot legally sue you for anything.

From a landlord's perspective - I signed the contract with Mr. Approved Tenant. If Mr. A Tenant then gets a substitute, that substitute is a risk I'm not necessarily willing to take. I didn't run a credit check on him, I didn't look at the length of his previous occupancy... I signed the contract with you, and I make sure that my contract specified that you're not allowed to sublet. At the end of the month I'm looking for one thing - the rent must be paid. If it is not paid, you are liable, as my contract is with you.

That all said - if a tenant finds someone willing to take over the lease, I'll gladly run a credit check and I'll seriously consider the proposition. After all, I'd prefer to have a good relationship with my tenants, rather than one based on "I'll blacklist you!".
 
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