Malaysia is pro-tenant in practice

June 22, 2006

Malaysia landlord and tenant lawsMalaysian rental market practice is PRO-TENANT, even if the law is pro-landlord, the court system is inefficient and slow.

Rents: Can landlord and tenant freely agree rents in Malaysia?

With the passage of the Control of Rent (Repeal) Act of 1997, rent control was totally abolished in 2000. Although the law states that rents should be freely negotiated, rent increases can be appealed to courts if the tenant feels it is too much.


Tenants usually pay a security deposit of two to three months' gross rental and another ½ month of rent as utility deposit. Rent is usually paid one month in advance.

What rights do landlords and tenants have in Malaysia, especially as to duration of contract, and eviction?

Tenancy agreements usually last for a year. Renewal with a possible rent adjustment must be mutually agreed upon. A notice to vacate must be given to the tenant three months before the expiration of the contract. The landlord has the right to vacant possession of the premises from the tenant without payment of any compensation.

Tenancies are exempt from government registration. But detailed written contracts are encouraged to protect the landlord.


Duration until completion of service of process 60
Duration of trial 90
Duration of enforcement 120
Total Days to Evict Tenant 270
Courts: The Lex Mundi Project

How effective is the Malaysian legal system?

Landlord and tenant issues and distress are handled by Sessions Courts. The court system is inefficient and is very costly compared to the amount to be recovered.

Even if it seems that landlords do not have a problem in evicting non-paying tenants, recovering unpaid rents is a major problem.

In 1997, a Control of Rent (Repeal) Act was passed aiming to help landlords to recover possession of the property and curb abuses by the tenants. The law has done very little to address both.


Malaysia Kuala Lumpur real estate for sale

There is no specific landlord and tenant law in Malaysia. Certain provisions of the National Land Code 1965 contain provisions on leases and tenancies. Tenancy agreements are covered by the Contract Act 1950; eviction of tenants is covered in a couple sections in the Specific Relief Act. These laws are vague and toothless, usually to the advantage of the tenant.


gavin | May 17, 2010

how do chase my tenant out of my house? i do not have any tenancy agreement. Now he is in 2 mths rental overdue. i did verbally ask him to move out but he ignore my request and challenge me to chase him out. i did lodge a police report to cover myself and my family. i only received 1 mth deposit and RM 200 for utility deposit. did not even raise the rental ever since 2004. rented for about 6 years.. pls advise.

RENUKA | May 15, 2012

Dear Sir / Madam ,

I having problem with my house owner. Im staying in Kampung house for the past 24 years.Its a illegal land which is not belong to my house owner.In year of 2000 we got a notice from the land owner asking us to vacate from the land. So all the resident in our village booked a lawyer for behalf of us to get some amount of compensation. The lawyer fees was shared by the resident and we paid our part of money ( not paid by the owner ). After this many years the land owner agreed to give the money we asked for.Now my house owner demanding us to give half the money to them. For the past 24 years we have been staying there and until now we are still continue paying the rent for the past 12 years although there has notice given. And more over i have the proof that i'm staying there for the past 24 years identity card, banci rumah (gov document) , and all our legal forms and documents from bank , government. But my owner does not have any documents stating that the house we are currently staying is belongs to them. According to the land owner, he stated that who ever staying in the house only will get the money not the owners. Kindly advice me in this situation. Do i have to pay half of the compensation money to my owner ?

Regards .

mrupai | April 25, 2014

It is a sad case for property owner in Malaysia indeed.

The existing law, code and act is very very weak to protect property owner interests and rights.

Login or Register to submit a comment!
In order to promote open and spam-free conversations, Global Property Guide moderates commetns on all articles. You can expect that your comment will be published within 24 hours.