Sharjah tenants forced to pay commission every year
House tenants in Sharjah are complaining that some real estate agents are fleecing them by charging them commission and rent contract registration fee every time they renew their annual leases, according to a report in the Arabic daily newspaper ‘Al Bayan.’
Tenants say some real estate agents are also refusing to renew their annual rent contracts.
Commissions range from Dh500 to Dh1,200 while contract registration fee ranges from Dh100 to Dh250.
Tenants say some real estate agents collect annual commission by calling it ‘administration fee.’
The representative committee of the real estate sector in the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry has said collection of any fee from tenants by real estate agents must be for extra services.
Iyad Ahmed, a tenant, said his real estate agent charges Dh500 and contract registration fee of Dh100 when lease is renewed.
“The company charges these fees from tenants who had lives in the same house for more than three years at rents over Dh15,000,” he said.
Tenant Mustafa Muhammad said real estate agents are taking advantage of the absence of laws that prohibit them from collecting additional fees from tenants.
“It is not logical to ask tenants to pay commission every year,” he said.
“Real estate agents used to charge Dh50 for registering rent contracts but now they are asking from Dh100 to Dh250. They are also demanding annual commission of upto Dh1,200,” he said.
Tenant Salah Ahmed said his real estate agent refused to allow him register the rent contract and instead charged Dh250 for doing the same. The agent is also demand commission and maintenance fees, he said.
Salah Al Mazrui, director of Salah Al Mazrui Properties, and member of the representative committee of the real estate sector in Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI), said some real estate charge annual commission from tenants by calling it administration fee.
“The annual commission fee from tenants is not prescribed by law, but it is known that it is being charged by some real estate agents in Sharjah,” he added.
AbdulAziz Sultan Majid Rashid, director of Al Multaqa Real Estate Company, said only a few companies were charging rent contract registration fee from tenants.
“Charges for contract documentation and renewal procedures should not collected from tenants,” he said.
Hussein Ismail Al Junaidi, director of Junaidi Properties, said some real estate agents force tenants rather than the owners to bear the cost of maintaining the buildings.
“Some fees may be justified if they were reasonable, like contract registration fees, but it must be optional not mandatory,” Al Junaidi said.
Saeed Ghanem Al Suwaidi, director of Al Ghanem Real Estate and head of the representative committee of the real estate sector in the Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI), said that the companies that impose an annual fee on tenants must provide additional services to tenants.
He pointed out that tenants who do not agree when signing the contract to pay annual commissions for real estate companies, are entitled to reject these fees and complain to the rent committee.
“The renewal of contracts and registration fees should be optional or at reasonable rates, especially with the provision of the new electronic renewal system,” he explained.
Al Suwaidi stressed the importance of raising awareness of tenants and called on tenants not to sign any contract unless they understand the conditions in it.
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