Lease Takeover Laws

Why would anyone consider taking over someone else’s lease?

Simply, lease periods in Bangkok tend to range from a minimum of 6-12 Months Periods at a minimum. This means that if a Lessee (Renter) was to end his contract early he would automatically forfeit his security deposit (Equivalent to 2 Months of Rent).
However some tenants tend to try and find an arrangement with their respective Landlords. That usually goes along the lines of… if they can find a “replacement tenant” to complete their Lease, the landlord will refund their Deposit.

As a renter should you consider a Lease Takeover?

It is really important to note that this is non-standard and most Rental Agreements will not have a lease takeover clause. Lease Takeovers are at the discretion of the Landlord and unfortunately most Landlords tend to take a negative view on these arrangements. If you are currently renting and need to consider breaking your Lease it is best to get permission and negotiate with the landlord. Not disclosing your intention to do a Lease Takeover can be viewed as subletting, which could get you into trouble (Resulting in the loss of your Security Deposit).

When negotiating/ discussing with your landlord it is important to discuss all the details of the arrangement such as:

  • Would your landlord allow a “replacement” tenant to take over the remaining amount of time left in the lease?
    Or is the Landlord expecting another full lease term?
  • Would the Landlord refund the deposit in full?
  • Who will prepare the takeover Paperwork?

What if you are considering taking over someone’s lease?

The positive of lease takeovers is you can generally get access to a shorter lease period; this is ideal if you are here for a period of less than 6 Months. Another possible advantage is the unit’s rental price, as it may be cheaper if it was negotiated/agreed several months or years ago.

However, there are numerous pitfalls and potential issues that might arise; it is therefore important to do some due diligence before simply handing over your hard earned money notably:

  • In most cases you do not know the current lessee, so it is important to verify that he has the Landlord’s permission. In the worst case scenario the renter does not and he is looking for an easy way out. This can be aggravated by the fact that individuals looking for someone to take over their lease, usually need to leave the country or city in a short period of time.
  • Ensure a new Lease Agreement and Inventory List is drafted to ensure you are given full-rights as the new official Lessee. It is important to get a certified copy of the Landlord’s ID/Passport.
  • Ensure you inspect the property upon check-out of the last tenant and ensure all utility bills have been cleared. As there is a possibility of inheriting unwanted costs from the previous occupant.

Provided these 3 factors are thoroughly guaranteed, Lease Takeovers can be smooth affairs.

This article was published by Freshbangkok in April 2020 

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