NSW Non payment of Water - Eviction?

Discussion in 'Property Management' started by TMNT, 3rd Jun, 2020.

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  1. TMNT

    TMNT Well-Known Member

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    just a q to the NSW PMs on here for clarifcation

    Have been told by PM that its not possible/tribunal wont force eviction due to non payment of utilities? however we can send breaches/tribunal

    Currently got a tenant who pays rent on time but is now 3 quarters of water behind at $800,

    I ve heard this before, but it doesnt make logical sense to me
     
  2. thatbum

    thatbum Well-Known Member

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    Your PM is wrong, or else you've possibly misunderstood them.

    Its subject to the usual rules for termination for breaches - the "breach has to justify termination in all the circumstances."

    $800 is potentially a lot of money, but what are the other circumstances?
     
  3. TMNT

    TMNT Well-Known Member

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    TLDR
    few years ago for a different IP, tenant fell behind just on water, I told them to issue breach notice, PM said, no point because we cant evict anyway,
    never thought about it again, because PM did their job, tenant eventually paid

    this week, followed up on a constantly late payer of water tenant, I wasnt aware it was that far behind, spoke to PM, apparently a few promises of payment, payment plans etc. nothing forthcoming, PM informs me that we cannot evict due to non payment of water, however, we can issue breach notices, and tribunal, and tribunal can enforce a payment plan, which should inform them this is serious,
     
  4. thatbum

    thatbum Well-Known Member

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    I think you were just giving me a backstory I guess, but none of that are part of the actually relevant circumstances.

    I guess your PM is not really giving you a proper answer, or they're just wrong.
     
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  5. TMNT

    TMNT Well-Known Member

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    Ok, what information am I missing?
    I'm leaning towards pm is wrong because they 've outright said you can't evict based on water arrears
     
  6. thatbum

    thatbum Well-Known Member

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    Other things happening with the tenancy. Mostly the tenant's situation actually. How much is the rent? How long have they been there? Why aren't they paying? Are they otherwise good tenants? What period of time have the arrears accumulated in?

    Things like that.
     
  7. Fernfurn

    Fernfurn Well-Known Member

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    What about if the tenant signed a specific clause saying he would pay for the water? He insisted on a water compliance cert (cant remember what it cost) even although the townhouse was only 12 years old and had a separate meter. He waited until the next one was due before he paid the first, then paid the next couple only after a new one was issued, but now he is now 3 behind.He has been issued a breach. Can I get debt collector's onto him?
     
  8. TMNT

    TMNT Well-Known Member

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    here it goes
    tenants been there 5 years
    $320 per week
    couple in their 50s-60s, living with son
    on Newstart or disability
    pay rent on time
    3 x consec water unpaid
    they fell behind on water a few years ago as well, same situation, agent didnt inform me, wasnt even aware herself, initially said "oh well, thats bad luck, not likely to get the $$$ back", I got pretty annoyed and complained to the principal, he immediately changed PM and put me onto a senior PM, she sorted it out pronto which im grateful for
    last couple of years, the routine inspection reports havent been good, the place is absolutely filthy, they keep using the excuse, that father has had heart surgery, PM has had to teach/tell them how to do basic cleaning,

    looking at things objectively, eviction due to the lack of cleanliness is an option
     
  9. thatbum

    thatbum Well-Known Member

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    Uh, really? Your brief facts reads like a statement of defence for the tenant against both water arrears and cleanliness evictions.

    They're on centrelink, still paying rent, and got some family medical stuff going on. Are you sure you're properly weighing up what a "breach justifying termination in all the circumstances" means?

    Put the details of the breach on one side, and then other mitigating factors on the other.
     
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  10. thatbum

    thatbum Well-Known Member

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    1. Umm what difference would a "specific clause" make if the tenant already has to pay for water?

    2. Do you want termination or the money?

    3. If you want the money, why would debt collectors be a smart way to do it, as opposed to just treating it like a tenancy liability?
     
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  11. TMNT

    TMNT Well-Known Member

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    no, im not a lawyer, nor has it gone to tribunal,
    I am trying to work out whether eviction is possible or not, and there will be a point where recovery will be too hard
    you asked for the back ground info, so I provided as much as I could
    as I previously mentioned, im not a lawyer,
    hence why I asked the question originally about the possibility of eviction, now that its happened in 2 different IPs in 5 years
     
  12. thatbum

    thatbum Well-Known Member

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    I don't expect you to be a lawyer, but if you're saying you're going to try and look at things objectively, then I'm telling you how to start doing that. Imagine it was someone else's property. Or even if you were the tenant.

    I wouldn't want to get the money go either. But then why don't you do something about it? Like breach and then apply for a judgement debt?
     
  13. TMNT

    TMNT Well-Known Member

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    my other IP incident years ago, the PM informed me that filing a breach is pointless so lets work with the tenant to get a payment plan arranged
    this worked fine,
    this latest incident, PM has said "they will file breaches as a "we are getting serious" action, even though we cannot evict"
    I am hoping that we do have the option of eviction, so that they will pay up, as that is mine/PMs feeling
     
  14. thatbum

    thatbum Well-Known Member

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    Ugh, your PMs sound annoying and ignorant. You and your PMs seem hung up on eviction as your only option.

    Here's what I would do.

    1. Pick up the phone and actually speak to the tenants. Figure out what the go is.

    2. If that doesn't work, issue a breach notice. For a number of reasons I cbf going into, its still probably a good idea.

    3. If that doesn't work, consider applying to tribunal for a financial order.
     
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  15. spludgey

    spludgey Well-Known Member

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    I think we need a caveat here.
    I believe that you can only charge tenants for water consumed in NSW if your showerheads, as well as bathroom and kitchen taps, are 6 star water rated.
    Plus, it may or may not be only the variable charges that you can pass on, not the fixed charges.
     
  16. Antoni0

    Antoni0 Well-Known Member

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    I went through the exact same thing with my PM and the PM said waste of time to issue breaches because the RTA will rule in the Tenant's favour from their past experience and didn't elaborate any more on it other than saying they can apply to get the owing money from the bond.
     
  17. luckyone

    luckyone Well-Known Member

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    He said they demanded a compliance certificate before they paid the first water bill
     
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  18. spludgey

    spludgey Well-Known Member

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    I don't think @TMNT 's tenant did. It was @Fernfurn that stated that.
     
  19. TMNT

    TMNT Well-Known Member

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    the plan is to apply for the financial order if they dont pay by next week

    have been told that, once a financial order is made, its minimum 3 Revists to tribunal before termination could be obtained
    and hence my original question of clarification

    actually quite the opposite, PM has not mentioned eviction, I am only starting to consider eviction now, balance of probabilities of recovery
    They are on periodic

    correct, water efficiency cert etc. is not in question here
     
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  20. thatbum

    thatbum Well-Known Member

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    There's no direct link between the financial order and the application for a termination. Not sure what your PM is talking about here either.