1. Is it mandatory to engage an estate agent to enter into a tenancy of a flat?
Not necessarily. The landlord and the tenant may negotiate on their own and enter into a tenancy agreement. In practice, many landlords and tenants in Hong Kong choose to purchase a printed tenancy agreement in English and Chinese from local stationery shops and use it as the basis of their tenancy. Such printed tenancy agreements contain the very basic terms of a typical tenancy, though it may not be adequate to cater for features specific to an individual case.
Parties who choose to act by themselves should pay special attention to the formalities and procedures that need to be followed after the signing of the tenancy agreement, particularly those in relation to stamping and the registration of the tenancy document(s) in the Land Registry.