VIC tenant pay water charges

Discussion in 'Property Management' started by Fernfurn, 27th Nov, 2019.

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  1. Fernfurn

    Fernfurn Well-Known Member

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    We have a tenant who is fairly lethal about maintenance and demanded a water compliance certificate as the property has its own water meter. Now he is very delinquent in reimbursing me for water (which I have to pay) and has not even paid the last one. What can I do to get him to reimburse me for water bills
     
  2. Scott No Mates

    Scott No Mates Well-Known Member

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    Check the treatment of water usage, it may be considered 'rent' under the Act.

    Serve a termination notice for outstanding water or depending on the definition outstanding rent. :D
     
  3. thatbum

    thatbum Well-Known Member

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    I haven't heard of any state legislation that treats a failure to pay for utility bills the same as rent. But it would be considered a breach of the terms of the agreement so the process for pursuing breaches, all the way to termination potentially, would typically be open to the lessor.

    Are you self managing or something? Handling breaches of the agreement is pretty bread and butter stuff for PMs.
     
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  4. PurpleTurtle

    PurpleTurtle Well-Known Member

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    If the property has its own meter, why is the water not in the tenant's name and paid directly by them? I thought this was the usual practice in Victoria. Certainly is in my experience.
     
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  5. D.T.

    D.T. Specialist Property Manager Business Member

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    Yup - Victoria is the best state on this, the only ones that allow usage and supply to be billed separately.

    @Fernfurn - not overly familiar with Vic legislation, but if reimbursing you for water usage is in the lease then you should be breaching for not following the agreement. Otherwise, water in Vic is generally in tenants name anyway.
     
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  6. S.T

    S.T Well-Known Member

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    If the property has its own separate water meter, the usage should go to the tenant. The landlord will have to pay the service charges still.
    If the property does not have it's own separate water meter, landlord has to pay everything, you cannot recoup the costs even on a lease.

    Utility charges - Tenants Victoria
     
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  7. Lil Skater

    Lil Skater Well-Known Member

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    Tenant to pay if on a separate meter, contact the water company and have it connected in their name.

    Don’t need a compliance certificate, but any new fittings need to be replaced in line with Aus standards.
     
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  8. TMNT

    TMNT Well-Known Member

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    i have a feeling the property is a unit/townhouse,
     
  9. Fernfurn

    Fernfurn Well-Known Member

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    Its a townhouse in Surfers under Gold Coast water, but that's a good idea I will ring them and check if it can go into tenants name. We have never had a problem before so never queried why it was set up to go on our rates and then be reimbursed. I suspect that is the way it has to be done in Qld
     
  10. D.T.

    D.T. Specialist Property Manager Business Member

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    Ah you put Victoria in the initial post, thats why people were giving you Victoria information.

    Vic is only state where it can go in tenants name.

    QLD is one of the states where compliance cert is needed. It'll depend on each lease - some leases have eg 32KL chargable without it, so best to have it so you can pass on water charges.
     
  11. Warren from Geelong

    Warren from Geelong Active Member

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    As others have said: in VIC, a water meter means the water use should be in the tenant's name and then there is no issue. Any issues with accuracy can be with the owner of the meter i.e. the water authority.

    If there is no meter, section 53(d) of the act states:
    A landlord is liable for ... all costs and charges related to a water supply service to and water supplied to rented premises that are not separately metered;​