Landlord problems

Hi all,

I am an Expat from Australia and my landlord will not pay my utilities and security deposit back to me after two months of vacating the premise. I was sharing a place in Bangsar last year. The only damage caused in the 12 months we were there was a broken crisper drawer (fridge) which we were happy to pay. One of the tenant missed her last payment and we were told this would be taken off from the deposit (which was also fine).

We are still owed close to RM37000 and the agent has been very unresponsive. All efforts to try and find out what has been happening has been from me. I haven't been given an itemised list of costs or anything.

I am so frustrated, as we were very good tenants. We looked after the place well, paid all bills (except one of the tenants forgetting the last payment).

I don't know if anyone else has been in a similar situation or has some advice to give on the matter?

Any help would be greatly appreciated  :(


Do you have a stamped tenancy agreement? If you do, perhaps you can seek legal opinion from lawyers?

Yes we have a stamped tenancy agreement. Unfortunately, this is what I think we need to do.

Unfortunately, you may have to seek legal action. I would not suggest using the same lawyers who worked on stamping the tenancy agreement. I've been through a similar nightmare before (although I was a buyer, not tenant) where the agent, owner and lawyer were working together.

I'll ask around to see if I can find any lawyers who may have more experience on this matter.

Thank you for the advice.

I greatly appreciate it.


Tht is quite alot of money to pay for an advance to rent a house... However when u rent the premises, they shud have provide u with the contract stated all itemised advance u guys paid and all the agent details shud be there... Do u guys still have the contract? How long have been stayed there? How long u guys were suppose to rent there? Here in KL usually just 3 months advance with some advance for the utilities..

Hi Ell,

Sorry that you are having problems with getting back some deposits from your landlord.

I can give you my opinion as a landlord. Firstly you cannot rely on the agent to help in any way at all. They have no obligation to help so if they are not responding then forget them. They have got their commission already, and their commission was paid by the landlord. Also your contract is with the landlord, not them. They also will be more on the landlords side because now that you are gone, the landlord will want to rent out his apartment again so the agent will want to continue working with the landlord.

Using a lawyer is going to be costly and unlikely that you can win against the landlord. Even should your lawyer send a court summons to the landlord it may cost you around RM1200 - RM1500. Sending a letter from a lawyer to the landlord may cost you around RM150 - RM300 per letter and the landlord can simply ignore those letters. You'd need to send 2 or 3 letters at least. Also, because RM3700 is not actually a large amount of money, the landlord may well feel that you will not want to pursue this matter.

A fair landlord should calculate everything out and refund you the balance. Normal wear and tear is not your responsibility as long as there is no damage. As a landlord I have always refunded everything owed to my tenants save for one occasion when I kept all RM13,750 of the tenants  2 1/2 months deposits (he was British). His initial tenancy agreement was for 2 years, and he insisted that we sign a one year extension each additional year that stated that either of us needed to give 3 months written notice in order to terminate the agreement early. He made a phone call instead, which I accepted, but only gave one months notice. But what annoyed me was that he had removed two window frames, and a few items were missing after he moved out, his response was "they're gone". He'd also installed a built-in table on the balcony and changed the wiring to install a fan and special lighting on the balcony. When he had called me up to give notice his reason was that he wanted to move in with his girlfriend and her daughter. Perhaps I could have been less tough on him as he was a good tenant but he also started to say that it was me asking him to leave which was nonsense. He had been a good tenant for more than 4 years paying RM5,500 per month. So he lost out on his two months deposit and the utilities deposit just about covered the missing items. He called me once to ask exactly how much I would be giving him back and I told him nothing. That was the end of it.

But basically I think you have an uphill battle. I would try to meet with him and discuss the matter with him. But if he doesn't respond or want to meet then you are going to have a hard time because what is to stop him from causing some damage and saying that you did it?

Please note also that the Management at your building will not get involved as this is a private matter.


We stayed out our contract. It was for 12 months. We did not break our lease.

We are not living there now as our contract has finished.

We have the landlords details.

Hansson you might want to take another look at the amount. I think you are missing a 0

ellboss :

Hansson you might want to take another look at the amount. I think you are missing a 0

Yes I stand corrected. RM37,000.-

In that case take a big law firm specialized in property law and litigation. The landlord may be scared if it is a big firm. But remember that court cases can take a year or two to conclude if you take into account appeals.

One of the MC's that I served on used a big law firm in Menara Tan & Tan on Jalan Tun Razak to sue a landlord who refused to pay Management Fees and owed RM38,000. Our total lawyers fees were around RM15,000 for a two year battle inclusive of the first judgement which we won and also the appeal which we also won. That happened about 4 - 5 years ago.


Something else you could do is contact the HBA (National House Buyers Assoc.) for advice. We have used them before for issues between Developer's, Management Councils and private owners. They have a panel of property lawyers and so may be able to give you some free advice.

These were their contact details one year ago:

National House Buyers Association (HBA)
No. 31, Level 3, Jalan Barat, Off Jalan Imbi, 55100 KL.
Tel: 03-21422225
Email: info[at]

Person to contact: Mr. Chang Kim Loong (Honorary Secretary General)

Use this number to speak to one of their volunteers during office hours: 012-3345676

They also say:

You may also come personally to our ADVICE CENTRE No. 31, Level 3, Jalan Barat, Off Jalan Imbi, 55100, Kuala Lumpur. Please bring along all your relevant documents for our perusal. This method is recommended if your questions require comprehensive explanation. 


jw0n :

Unfortunately, you may have to seek legal action. I would not suggest using the same lawyers who worked on stamping the tenancy agreement. I've been through a similar nightmare before (although I was a buyer, not tenant) where the agent, owner and lawyer were working together.

I'll ask around to see if I can find any lawyers who may have more experience on this matter.

Hi JwOn,

Agents are usually on the side of the Vendor because it is the Vendor who pays the commission. I usually do not trust Agents. You may know one for 10 years and the first time you make a transaction through them they might try to take advantage of you if they can. Also, whether you are buying or selling a property I recommend always using your own lawyer, the only exception is when you buy a new development from a Developer and you have no say in the matter. I also strongly recommend passing everything including the Letter of Offer, Intent to Purchase, Agreement to Purchase etc to your lawyer to make the necessary amendments.

Most Property Agent's use a fairly standardized letter of Agreement to Purchase with their firm's letterhead. But so many terms are there to give the Agent an advantage over you. Similarly, NEVER sign any letter of authorization from the Agent. It just strengthens their position in the case of any party backing out and allows them to make money from the earnest deposit if the deal does not go through.



You have given me much information. I am really appreciative of this. I will definitely look into the suggested actions to move forward. Lets hope it is a relatively short process whatever happens.

Have a great weekend.

Hi Ellboss,

You have a great weekend too, and I really hope you can find a solution to this problem.


Feel sad and disappointed  to heard that,
Am oso estate agent. But more on new project. Not doing rental case.

My advise is check out with the real estate board department.

And pls to be confirm, the tenancy agreement is it the real landlord sign it ? Or agent sign on behalf?

Alot case happen, is the agent sign on the tenancy agreement, when u moved out, the owner cant pay your back all the deposit, because it all taken by the agent.

And pls be alert on certain agency, they wont responsible after taking your money.

Kendrolee :

Feel sad and disappointed  to heard that,

Alot case happen, is the agent sign on the tenancy agreement, when u moved out, the owner cant pay your back all the deposit, because it all taken by the agent.

Haha...something a bit like that happened to me as a landlord.

I signed a one year tenancy agreement with a tenant, then when I went to collect rent I noticed that someone else was living inside my apartment. I checked with the agent who told me that the tenant had moved out after a month but that she had found someone else to replace the first one. She showed me the tenancy agreement but it was signed by her, the agent, and not by me. I got really angry telling her it was illegal.

But the worse was that the first tenant who broke the contract should have lost their two months security deposit to me. However the agent said that she returned the deposit to the first tenant and took a new deposit from the second. I also assumed that the agent pocketed the deposits.

However, this agent is a rental agent who handles about 50 apartments in one condo, does repairs and renovations at close to cost price, and who I continue to use. Even if I had reported her to the Board of Property Agents it wouldn't have helped me, and she might not even be a registered agent.

But considering the high rental paid by the OP, I doubt that this kind of agent was involved. It sounds more like the landlord is the one who just wants to keep the deposits because he knows most tenants do not want to go to court.


It happen alots in Malaysia. Because no one is file a complain and go to the court.
It make us-those agent which follow rules is trouble and reputation is spoilt.

hope u can solve the problem soon.


Seriously, I'm pity and feel sorry for the incident happened to you. As a Malaysian, I felt unfair and been humiliate by those culprit who create a problem and makes such thing damn shame to other Malaysian. By the way, I'm not really know and confirm that how true on your side if you had breach the contract or not or perhaps few other things that you had overlooked. If you are confident and sure that you are the victim here, please be informed that those legal action or anything that related to the landlord agency is useless. You need a service from a collector or Bill collector or from the private service doing all this kind of collection which is really shortage the time and cost. Try to look into this kind of service which will benefit you more and also a lesson to those Bastard Landlord.

Thank you

Best Regards

Yup a debt collector just might work.

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