Difficult landlord won't renew lease; I'm planning to leave but want to stay 6 months


Apple daily would find a way to spin it showing the big bad foreigner WAS corrupting the poor children’s morals…:slight_smile:


Why not just move somewhere and sign a 6 month lease?
Because the last time I moved I paid a moving company 30,000NT, since I was moving out of a 6 floor apartment (no elevator) into a 5 floor apartment (no elevator).

As I am planning to leave Taiwan anyway, an extra expense of that magnitude would be a hardship.

Under such circumstances, why would someone advise a person to pay such fees instead of negotiate???

Based on past experience, it will take much more than one week to get rid of all the furniture and pack up, sell or give away 12 years of stuff.

As I said before, I’m trying to write a Ph.D. dissertation while working full time (and commuting 3 hours per day–if I were staying in Taiwan moving might make sense). In terms of the claim it makes on my time and attention, moving is like taking on another job. Frankly, I’m exhausted already.

Yes, I have considered offering her whichever furniture she wants. That’s a substantial financial loss if I do not sell it, but selling it is not easy without an elevator. So yes, that’s one possibility.

No one seems able to answer my question about whether the proper place to go for mediation is in the district where you live or in the district where the landlord lives.


I’m afraid we cannot. I think contacting to Tsui mama doesn’t hurt anything, even if they don’t have any idea to help you. They may have some more useful ideas than most of us. I guess they can answer to the above specific question, at least.


It might have made an Apple daily story. This is not relevant to my predicament now, but it might interest somebody:

My current landlord actually wrote to me on Line saying that I should not rent to people from India, the middle east, or black people because it will bother the neighbors. She also said my (white) roommates might not want to share a bathroom with them, and that I should consider that there are old people and children in the building, and such people carry diseases.

At the time, I was too terrified and beaten down to make a public issue of it. As it was, I recruited three different people to help get her to stop harassing me on behalf of the racist neighbor who complained. It was very difficult.

I have been unable to forgive her for that treatment, especially as it came immediately after a similar incident. The harassment and disrespect from this landlord lasted most of the first year. I have lived there for four years now. The neighbors now like me–considerably more than they like the landlord. Even the one who didn’t want a foreigner in the building smiles at me now, but I am unable to trust the people who once did that to me and prefer to avoid them.

The stereotype of westerners I have encountered is that we are promiscuous (an ironic accusation, given my friend-full but otherwise solitary life. In truth, not having a visible boyfriend was part of what made me suspect, enabling a neighbor at Shida Rd. to make insulting and baseless suggestions about me to other neighbors and my landlord.) Before I found that place, I had two real estate agents from different companies explain to me that landlords in the Shida area do not want to rent to foreigners. When I asked why, I was told because we “have too many boyfriends and girlfriends, party loudly, and it bothers the neighbors.” I am a well behaved, properly dressed, 50-year old professional, but the stereotype applied anyway.

When I left Shida Rd. I moved to Xindian. I was depressed at the time. Trouble only started again when another neighbor complained to the landlord about having a foreigner in the building.

Landlords side with neighbors against tenants, because neighbors are forever and tenants are replaceable. If you have a Taiwanese family you are probably in better shape. If you don’t have a family and prefer not living alone, you might become an object of suspicion.

Another interesting fact is that it seems to be women my age who see themselves as the enforcers of morality who give me a hard time. I am presumed to be desperate and a threat to people’s marriages. (I’m told that means I’m attractive enough to be perceived as a threat.) Once or twice people suggested I should marry a retiree who needs someone to take care of him. That would give me a useful place in society.

In case it’s not obvious, I speak Chinese and all these conversations happen in Chinese. But I do find it quite difficult to negotiate in Chinese in a conflict, partly because I don’t speak as well when I am distracted by being upset.


i think as foreigners we need to make an issue of it. otherwise we are just sitting ducks to all the stereotypes and nonsense that can be leveled at us, just because we are outsiders.


As others said. The landlord has no obligation to extend the lease no matter how nasty she may be. If you over stay and refuse, you’re only confirming his or her negative stereotype. Why would you want to keep giving someone like that money anyways?

For short term you’re requirements for a new place shouldn’t be too much to accommodate since you’re moving anyways. And sooner or later you’d have to pack. Why not kill two birds with one stone. Have the movers pack some stuff you can just bring with you when you leave that you don’t need to unpack now. And start throwing away things you don’t need. With movers, one person should be done within the day.


I would check with a lawyer about that. Trespassing may be a factor. In some countries, there is a lengthy process to evict someone. A former roommate from Canada said her ex-husband would get an apartment in the fall and stop paying in the winter because it wasn’t permitted to evict tenants in winter. I don’t know the eviction laws here, but I would be more worried about the landing getting some guys to remove you from the premises. Also, it’s not hard to change a lock. Mine malfunctioned a while back and I got some guy to come with a drill, a hammer, and something like a railroad spike. After banging away for awhile, he had the old one off and a new one on. He never asked for proof I lived there. I’m guessing that you can have your lock changed, and then the landlord can have it changed again and lock you out. Also, she may be able to shut your power/water/gas off, even if it’s in your name. I once accidentally shut off my neighbors gas. In my old apartment, neighbors often shut off each other’s water, power, and wifi. It’s not that hard. In one old apartment, it was in the contract that the landlord would shut off the power after 6 weeks of non-payment. Landlords get irate when you don’t pay.
The OP’s main point seems to be they don’t have time to deal with it. Unfortunately, it’s going to be a headache in any direction. I don’t know why a master’s or above student would get into a situation like that to begin with. Were it me, I’d dump everything big as cheaply as possible, then get an AirBNB or find a short-term rental on FB for the remaining time. A student’s first priority is their studies, not fighting to keep an apartment. Sometimes you have to cut an run, right and wrong aside.


If you’re leaving in six months, why not sell your furniture now or have movers pack it up and ship it back home now? buy a cheap bed or rent a place with one in it.


Woman up. Moving will take a day or two. You don’t write a dissertation in a day or two no matter how fast you are, or you’d already be done. Don’t blame everything on “but my disserTAAAAAAtion!” Don’t blame everything on “but the Taiwanese are raaaaacist”! They are what they are, and what they are are the people who own the property you’re renting.

You have no legal basis to stay there. You are banking on the idea that the landlord will follow the law, instead of (for example) entering your apartment while you’re out and removing all your stuff, or getting some beefy local friends to “talk” to you about leaving, or whatever. Do yourself (and your dissertation) a favor and just. move. at the end of the lease.

Move into a nice furnished room with a bathroom attached, or some other apartment, and just leave everything you don’t want for the landlord to deal with (if you want to get a little poke in). Expect to lose your deposit in full.

You aren’t getting that there is NO BASIS for mediation here. The landlord has provided you an apartment for the period of the lease. That’s all she has to do. She doesn’t have to cooperate with your timetable or your convenience.

And for the record, I too am a 50-something year old woman who has written a dissertation and a second MA thesis while living in Taiwan. And had to move in the middle of them, more than once. I still graduated on time. Sorry to sound harsh, but there’s just no issue here.


The OP has reasons why she doesn’t want to move. We may not understand them, but different people handle change in different ways.

I’m interested in hearing what happens when the OP offers her landlady the furniture - without mediation, just talking to her directly. I would be very surprised if a landlady were to say no to having a fully furnished apartment for future rental free of charge.


Depends on what the furniture is. Western taste is often very different from Taiwanese. And I can see the landlord “accepting” the furniture for free on top of being paid rent for the remaining months, but not paying for the furniture, and that’s the feeling I get from the OP – the furniture is “good” and should be paid for.

And honestly - it just doesn’t matter what reasons the OP has for not wanting to move. It’s not up to her, unfortunately. And to be brutally honest, it seems…a bit of a pattern, perhaps?..that there are always “us-vs-them” issues in every single place the OP has been living, doesn’t it? You hear of a foreigner having trouble in one particular house, perhaps, but not every single place for how many years? After awhile you have to ask whether it’s really all the locals.


Bloody hell, I’m down 13-0.

OK, point taken, OP needs some tough love.

EDIT: 14-0


Thank you, Andrew0409. If I were ever in a foxhole under enemy fire, I’d want you next to me.


I’ll always back a homie


Actually, most landlords I have had do not want extra furniture, not even as a gift. I have always thought it was aversion to second hand stuff or no space for storage if the next person does not want them.


That’s a bit odd because furnished apartments cost more, and unless the landlord is replacing the furniture after each tenant it’s going to be second hand.

Then again, I tend to avoid logic with landlords as it can lead to headaches.


I’ve only had landlords with unfurnished apartments twice, but once he didn’t care if I left furniture and in the one I just moved into the landlord had left stuff from the previous tenants.


I tend to leave all my junk and gift the landlord the deposit telling her upfront of this. It’s no big deal to them, they just get a cleaning company in to clear everything out.