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Tenant: Commercial unit in Shopping Mall

258 Views  ⚫  Asked 3 Years Ago
asked on Oct 24, 2014 at 14:18
by   Ellen
We are selling pastry in a shopping mall in Penang by renting a small kiosk. Due to bad sales, we have sign a side agreement with the landlord in April 2013. With that agreement, they will assist to find a replacement tenant. Once new tenant found, we will pay the rent until new tenant done the renovation. On top of this 1 month of our deposit will be forfeited (we have paid 5 months deposit). Through verbal conversation, the landlord promise not to get new tenant in towards the end of the contract as this is not fair to us.

In August 2014, we were informed that new tenant found, we can leave on 30th Sept 2014 (our contract going to end on 13th Nov 2014). We have sent an email, asking what will be the terms & conditions apply if we leave on 30th Sept 2014. Instead of reply through email, the staff of the landlord call us & verbally agreed that no penalty apply & we pay the rental until 30th Sept 2014.

After we moved out, in Oct 2014, we received letter from the management of the mall & asked us to pay rental until 13th Nov 2014 (which is end date of tenancy contract). As according to the management, based on the main tenancy agreement, we have to pay until end of contract even we leave earlier.

Now our issue is if we knew that we have to pay rental no matter we stay or leave, we will choose to stay until the end as our sales still able to cover the expenses (salary & utilities). Excluded the rental, we can still earn about a thousand.

Our assumption is since it is towards the end of the contract, landlord ask us to leave, they have the benefit of renting to new tenant, as such we should also benefit from not paying the rental after we move.

The management staff argued that she "assumed" we knew that we have to pay the rental until end of contract. We have the sense that she tried to twist the information & mislead us.

As a representative of landlord, does she have the responsibility to inform tenant clearly before we leave?
Is there any way we can bring up the case and claim the compensation?
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