How Do I Rent An Office In Singapore?

After the incorporation of your company, you would then look to rent a suitable office for your business operations in Singapore.

There are generally 3 categories of commercial leases. They are retail, offices and industrial spaces. There are certain restrictions in the respective commercial spaces, as to what kind of businesses can be operated there.

This article will give you a better understanding of what a general commercial leasing contract is and the important terms to look out for.

All Singapore contracts must be prepared within the framework of Singapore’s laws. So for a commercial lease contract, there is no fixed template. It is up to both parties privy to the contract, to come to a private agreement between themselves.

Rental Payment and Deposit

The contract will state the total rent which is agreed upon. It is quite common in Singapore for the rent to be quoted on a price per square feet (PSF) basis.

A deposit is usually payable before the start of the lease.  A one-month deposit is payable for every one year of the lease agreed upon, which is a common practice in Singapore. So the deposit will be 2 months for a 2 years lease. The reason for collecting a deposit is so that the landlord is protected against any willful damages caused by the tenant, or if there is a breach of contract. In such an event, this deposit can be forfeited or deducted. It will be fully refunded at the end of the tenancy if there are no breaches in the contract.

If the tenant fails to pay rent on time, there will be clauses in the tenancy agreement that state the penalty.

Renovation, Furnishing And Minor Repairs 

Certain commercial spaces may have already been fully fitted and furnished. The landlord could have done it or the previous tenant left them behind. If the premise already comes fitted, you will save some money and time. However, that will certainly mean the landlord will ask for a higher rent as compared to a unit that is empty and bare.

If you have your own preference in design or theme, we will advise that you look for an empty unit.

A common practice will be that you as the tenant, can request a rent-free period where you can make use of this time to do up the premise before the rent starts officially.

Take note that a typical commercial lease will have a provision for the landlord to demand that you reinstate the premise to the original condition when they vacate in the future.

Minor repair is a noteworthy clause. This clause typically applies to premises with furniture or appliances. The minor repair clause states the repair amount each party has to pay for the repair when an item spoils over the lease tenure.

Subletting and Nature of Business 

You usually cannot sublet the premises that you rented. You cannot assume you have the rights to do so as a tenant. Before you proceed to sublet, you must obtain explicit consent from the landlord.

Both parties will state and agree on the usage of the rented premises clearly in the contract. There must be no deviation.

Insurance And Public Liability

The landlord is usually the one responsible for the fire insurance for the said property. Besides that, you as a tenant should maintain public liability insurance in any event of accidents.

Utilities and Maintenance

All managed properties in Singapore are liable to pay a maintenance fee to the building management (MCST). And this cost is typically borne by the landlord.

You as a tenant is responsible for paying the utilities such as electricity and water. Whereas the landlord pays for the maintenance fee to the building management.

It is important for you to fully understand the implications and clauses stated in the commercial lease contract before you even sign on the dotted line. Our team provides a one-stop solution to assist with all matters, allowing you to set up your business operations smoothly in Singapore. Get in touch with us today!


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