Water Usage Issues

4 Replies

Okay the 4 unit buildings when built in 1981 have one meter going in.There is no sub meters.

Fulton county water stated that is what the builder requested in 1981.Fast forward to today.

Fulton county does not do sub metering for these buildings.The water company stated these buildings only have a 3/4 line meter on one and 1 inch line meter on the others.

Water bill has been high.We fixed a bunch of leaks and filed leak adjustments to Fulton county.

Water company says they can test meter to make sure it reads right.Previous owner had high readings as well.Some tenants are only supposed to have 2 to 4 people living there on lease.End up having 8 to 10 people and they use the water constantly even with no leaks.

Currently we provide water,sewer,trash into the total rent.We have to do it this way because with one line if the 3 tenants pay the bill but one does not the water company will cut off water to the whole building and lien it.

Since it is one line into the building even if all leaks are fixed I can't go up to a tenant without proof they are using more water.I can tell tenant with an adjusted lease they are responsible for any usage after 50 bucks a month but they might not pay the difference.

My plumber told me of a company that will install individual meters and then bill the tenants directly.Have any of you had experience with these companies?

Thanks

Joel,

I'm the last guy to give advice to on this....BUT (haha).

Many apartment complexes in my area divide the total water bill each month and distribute it to the units evenly, and maybe based on unit size as well. I only know this because of having lived in apartments, not from owning them. This practice appeared common. It might not work as well with a smaller building with less units to distribute the outlier such as you are describing. This is my observation of large apartment complexes. I have no idea if there is a minimum number of units for legal reasons or if this practice would be legal in your area.

I don't know any companies that install meters...

Greg so what is the price for one of these??

The shut off valve for the main is under the stairs for each of the 4 units to a building.

So I would need 20 of these but I can't find a cost. I can see tenants now trying to mess with them or say the reading isn't right because the meter is not used by the water company.

It all depends on what it would cost to install and buy them.

@Joel Owens not sure about the costs. I've never done it to water, just an idea. I have had my own electric meter installed to the second property that was sharing a meter. I have had no flack from anyone over it.

How about running the lines through your locked maintenance closet and installing the flow meters there so you can keep them secure? They may not be accurate to the gallons but they could show you proportions used of total usage. You would also be able to spot the 10 people in one unit problem or leaking toilets.

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