$700 Water Bill Eviction Question

10 Replies

So one of my tenants has a $700 water bill. I sent her a 10 day notice to quit and I am getting ready to file with the city next week. Just wondering if others have had experience with this.

What should I do? Let her work out a payment plan with the city or file right away? The water bill is attached to the house and the tax bill.

She pays rent on time, but can't seem to handle the water bill.

Well have you spoke with the tenant about this and where do you guys stand on this issue? Yes i'd file immediately but depending on the situation (sounds like she pays rent on time) I'd work with her to make payments especially if this was an unexpected $700 bill and not a case where she just hasn't paid the last 3-4 bills (If the latter then shame on you too lol).

I word my lease so that overdue water bills are paid before rent so in this case she would be $700 behind on rent which would make it easier when filing court papers.

Chris K.

    evict. And don't make this mistake again. Always auto Draft the water bill and bill the tenants THAT month.

    Thanks for the replys. She hasn't been paying the bill the last few months. I will go through with the eviction and make sure the pay utilities first when rent is paid.

    @Thomas Blaine Usually there are different notices for different types of violations. Our 10 day notice to "comply or quit" would cover this. So our tenant would have 10 days to pay the water bill, before I would take another step.

    You said you sent her a "10 day notice to quit". Is that legal where you are? Shouldn't she have a chance to redeem herself? Would you not want to try to save the tenancy? Have you talked with her? What are her intentions? If she can work out a payment plan with the city, it could work out well for both of you. If it is just the water bill that is the issue and she is a good tenant in other respects, I think being more open minded would be the key. Everything is negotiable.

    Does your state allow you to take the rent money and apply it to a water bill?

    Joe Gore

    @Thomas Blaine $700 sounds like a huge water bill unless she is watering a large lawn, etc - have you checked whether there is a leaking pipe somewhere? Or is this accumulated over many months?

    Originally posted by @Andrew S. :
    @Thomas Blaine $700 sounds like a huge water bill unless she is watering a large lawn, etc - have you checked whether there is a leaking pipe somewhere? Or is this accumulated over many months?

    It's about 5 months. I usually dont start bugging them till its around $300 and now its up to $700. I'm trying to work it out with her. She lost her job. Just trying to see if she can pay about half this month and then I can make sure she is paying every month.

    Send legal notices and begin eviction process, take what you need to cover from sec dep and continue to court for the balance if worthwhile.

    Originally posted by @Thomas Blaine :

    It's about 5 months. I usually dont start bugging them till its around $300 and now its up to $700. I'm trying to work it out with her. She lost her job. Just trying to see if she can pay about half this month and then I can make sure she is paying every month.

    Going forward you have to make sure you start bothering them the within the first couple days after the bill becomes due. If they know that you're going to let them slide until the bill hits a certain amount then their logic going forward is "I don't have to pay the water bill until it gets up to $300".

    Chris K.

      Originally posted by @Chris K. :
      Originally posted by @Thomas Blaine:

      It's about 5 months. I usually dont start bugging them till its around $300 and now its up to $700. I'm trying to work it out with her. She lost her job. Just trying to see if she can pay about half this month and then I can make sure she is paying every month.

      Going forward you have to make sure you start bothering them the within the first couple days after the bill becomes due. If they know that you're going to let them slide until the bill hits a certain amount then their logic going forward is "I don't have to pay the water bill until it gets up to $300".

      Thanks for the reply. I agree. I have been good with most of my tenants, but I did let this one slide a little.

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