Govt & Landlords Will Give Small Businesses Up To 4 Months’ Rent Waiver

Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) have been hit hard by the Covid-19 outbreak.

While the government announced rent waivers as part of the previous 3 Budgets, the Fortitude Budget is helping them out further.

The relief will come in 2 parts: 1 by the landlord and the other by the government, the Ministry of Law said on Wednesday (3 Jun).

Along with what was previously given, this makes up to 4 months’ relief for eligible SMEs, from April to July.

Read on to find out the finer details, as not all SMEs will get 4 months of relief.

Govt will give up to 2 months of rental relief

On top of the Property Tax Rebate from the Resilience Budget, the government will give eligible SMEs additional cash grants worth up to 0.8 months of rent as part of the Fortitude Budget.

SMEs are eligible if their turnover for 2019 was S$100 million or less. They must also have been a tenant before 25 Mar 2020, and have had at least 35% drop in average monthly revenue since April to May, reports Channel NewsAsia (CNA).

The amount they’re eligible for depends on where their workspace is located.

Altogether, SME tenants in commercial properties can get 2 months of rent offset. Meanwhile, those in industrial or office properties will receive 1 month’s rent offset.

Landlords to provide additional relief

Landlords also have to provide rental waivers to SMEs that have experienced a significant drop in average monthly revenue due to Covid-19.

SMEs tenants in qualifying commercial properties will receive 2 months’ waiver of base rental, while those in industrial or office properties are eligible for 1 month’s waiver.

These waivers will kick in during June and July for commercial properties, and May for those in industrial or office properties.

To summarise:

Source

  • SMEs located in commercial properties will get 2 months’ rent offset from govt + 2 months from their landlord
  • SMEs located in industrial or office properties will get 1 month’s rent offset from govt + 1 month from their landlord.

Landlords can apply for help if they cannot offer rent waiver

If landlords are unable to give their share of rent waivers due to financial strain, they can apply for help.

The details for this application will be announced later.

Successful applications will allow landlords to provide just half of the waivers — 1 month for commercial properties instead of 2, and half a month instead of 1 for industrial and office properties.

Tenants who can’t vacate premises due to Covid-19 will not be held liable

There are tenants who have or had difficulties moving out of their premises due to Covid-19.

They’ll be given relief per the COVID-19 (Temporary Measures) Act to not be held liable in the event that they cannot move out.

The Ministry of Law will be handling this on top of the rent waivers already given.

Businesses need rent waiver to tide through crisis

The full list of amendments and help that MinLaw will give can be found here.

These rent waivers seek to aid businesses that have suffered greatly, and are in danger of folding.

Hopefully, with assistance from the government and landlords, SMEs will be able to tide through this difficult period.

Featured image by MS News.