Real Estate

Billing tenant for previous month utilities since they are in lease agreement??

  • Last Updated:
  • Mar 15th, 2019 7:50 am
[OP]
Member
May 27, 2013
401 posts
27 upvotes

Billing tenant for previous month utilities since they are in lease agreement??

In a duplex my municipality/provider does not let me put the account for water and gas under 2 names

So for the first month the tenant is in. Should I bill them for the previous months amount. Since after the move out it will be hard to collect money from them since they arent under a lease agreement??
12 replies
Member
May 7, 2015
255 posts
366 upvotes
Toronto, ON
wantboost1 wrote: In a duplex my municipality/provider does not let me put the account for water and gas under 2 names

So for the first month the tenant is in. Should I bill them for the previous months amount. Since after the move out it will be hard to collect money from them since they arent under a lease agreement??
You want to bill last months amount for gas and water for the next months usage.

You’d be hard pressed to get me to agree to that.
[OP]
Member
May 27, 2013
401 posts
27 upvotes
moeymoeymoeymoe wrote: You want to bill last months amount for gas and water for the next months usage.

You’d be hard pressed to get me to agree to that.
Yes but once they move out they are not in a lease agreement. What's the odds of them actually paying??for the last month they were living there
Deal Addict
Jul 29, 2006
4092 posts
907 upvotes
this is where having a good relationship between tenant and landlord come into play
[OP]
Member
May 27, 2013
401 posts
27 upvotes
nx6288 wrote: this is where having a good relationship between tenant and landlord come into play
Does that really matter now adays. If someone can get something for free they will !! I guess next lease agreement I will put proper wording in .
Newbie
Mar 30, 2016
72 posts
45 upvotes
This forum never ceases to entertain.

Why not just bill them actuals when they leave? I'm trying to think how you could possibly word this to a tenant.

"Yo, not that I dont trust you (totally don't) but here is last month's utilities to pay. Im doing this because you just wont be motivated after you leave, remember though, I trust you its just this makes me feel better. This way if you do end up feeling like not paying me I will only lose a few dollars instead of 75."

"Uhh, we will just pay when you send us the bill after we move out"

"I think this is better, also if the real bill ends up less just think of it as a refund! People love tax refunds!"

Hope this inspires you to be creative when you propose this.
No external links in signatures, please see the forum rules - Moderator.
Deal Addict
Jul 29, 2006
4092 posts
907 upvotes
wantboost1 wrote: Does that really matter now adays. If someone can get something for free they will !! I guess next lease agreement I will put proper wording in .
I think so. My last tenant moved out Jan 31 and I just sent her the city water/garbage, hydro, and gas portion that they owe and she confirmed that she'll drop cheque off this weekend so I guess we'll see.
Deal Addict
Jan 28, 2007
2215 posts
1564 upvotes
SW Ontario
You could look at an all-inclusive rent rate, but this then opens another can of worms potentially.

Otherwise, you might want to look at separate metering if possible to do, as that is how my duplex is set up.
I'd rather be outdoors camping, kayaking, and mountain biking ...
Member
May 7, 2015
255 posts
366 upvotes
Toronto, ON
wantboost1 wrote: Does that really matter now adays. If someone can get something for free they will !! I guess next lease agreement I will put proper wording in .
The alternative you’re proposing is for them to pay for something they did not use during a period they were not present. How can you even justify this in your own head Let alone convince anyone else this is okay, what are you going to say if this ends up in court?


If you don’t trust them why should they trust you?
Deal Guru
User avatar
Mar 23, 2008
11502 posts
7791 upvotes
Edmonton
If it was me (as a landlord), I would take a reading on your meters on move-in day, and on move out day. And prorate the first and last bills based on those. That’s basically what would happen if they had a separate service, and makes sure that everyone pays what they use.

The small risk that the tenant doesn’t pay is mitigated by the relatively small amount of one month’s prorated share of a utility bill. If that’s going to make or break your rental profitability, you’re doing it wrong.

C
Sr. Member
Jun 7, 2017
944 posts
678 upvotes
BC
CNeufeld wrote: If it was me (as a landlord), I would take a reading on your meters on move-in day, and on move out day. And prorate the first and last bills based on those. That’s basically what would happen if they had a separate service, and makes sure that everyone pays what they use.

The small risk that the tenant doesn’t pay is mitigated by the relatively small amount of one month’s prorated share of a utility bill. If that’s going to make or break your rental profitability, you’re doing it wrong.

C
That makes no sense. Can't pro-rate after the fact (move-out day). Geez, talk about over complicating it. Send them the bill after the last reading. They won't pay? Write it off.
A savvy landlord would fold the risk into the rental price as a cost of doing business.
Deal Guru
User avatar
Mar 23, 2008
11502 posts
7791 upvotes
Edmonton
Furcorn wrote: That makes no sense. Can't pro-rate after the fact (move-out day). Geez, talk about over complicating it. Send them the bill after the last reading. They won't pay? Write it off.
A savvy landlord would fold the risk into the rental price as a cost of doing business.
That’s what I would normally do, but the OP is continually looking for ways to complicate their life, so I was just trying to be helpful :)

C
Sr. Member
Jun 19, 2007
714 posts
531 upvotes
Halifax
wantboost1 wrote: Does that really matter now adays. If someone can get something for free they will !! I guess next lease agreement I will put proper wording in .
Well aren't you the delightful little cynic. Is that really how you live? There is a bit of a difference between legitimately getting something for free, and flat out stealing - which is what this would fall under. Is that how you and you're friends operate? The second the shopkeeper's back is turned you're stuffing your oversized coat with whatever is handy?

The ironic thing is that by attempting to weed out people who will screw you, you end up attracting them since quality people don't put up with games, or tolerate acting in bad faith.

Look at shops that have ridiculous 'bags must be left at front' or 'washrooms for customers only' signs. It's never the McDonalds' or Walmarts or billion dollar winners. It's shifty little pawn shops or crappy overpriced convenience stores with clientele to match.

Yes there are people out there who will try and screw you. If you're even interacting with them you've already lost. Company you keep and all that. One of my rules for life is I don't deal with dishonest people. One chance then gone. And happy when it only costs me $50 or less to determine someone was a bum and get them out of my life. For better or worse though high quality, honest people can demand better terms in just about everything from loans, jobs, to rents. If you want to make 60% APR on money start a pay day loan shop. But be prepared to deal with dead beats and have several loans go bad. If you want as solid an assurance of getting your money back that exists, start a proper bank rivaling the big 5. (obviously said in jest, but hopefully you get the point).

If you want to deal with people who you'll have to chase down for a $40 bill, charge higher rent and deal with the bottom 10% of renters. Those people will be desperate, put up with any terms, and if they pay you, will pay you through the nose for rent.

Conversely, there are renters out there likely financially better off that you, and at least equally as honest. Why would one of these 1%er renters want to rent your place? Certainly not to be treated like a thief in waiting.

Top