Landlord name on water/trash bill

8 Replies

Hi All,

I plan to rent my single family home but in Fresno where i live in the water and waste management bill are separate.

1. Water - offer by a company 

2. physical waste/sanitation - offer by the city.

The issue now is that either the city/water company allow tenant to have their name on it. it has to be a landlord. I plan to have the tenant pay for those bills

I realize that i could pay those bills and charge extra to cover those item. But water is meter.

Can someone please recommend a solution. 

If you have a history of the water bills for the property, then you can know what to expect in the future. You could just add this to the base rent so that it is included. We also pay for water, and it hasn't really been a problem as far as people using tons of it.

Nicole A., New Page LLC | [email protected] | 305‑537‑6252

@Vannak Kann  the utility companies in fresno told you that the bills have to be in your name?  That cant be true.  Most all my single door properties have thr utilities in the tenants names.  

Bill your tenants for the water and garbage along with their rent.  

State in your lease agreement that they are responsible for the water and garbage and that the water and garbage payment is due along with their rent.  

If the water and garbage is not paid along with their rent, then their rent will be applied to any outstanding bills owed to you.  Therefore their rent will then become late, as their rent will be applied to the outstanding bill.

Send them a Notice to Quit along with a letter stating that their rent has been applied to the Water and Garbage owed, with the amount of days the balance of the money owed will need to be in your office in order to make their rent paid in full.

You will be surprised at how tenants will pay all monies owed to you, when they know that their rent has been applied to any outstanding bills that are due to you.  But it MUST be stipulated in your Lease Agreement for it to be binding.

Nancy Neville

I'm going to check with the city again tomorrow to confirm, will let you all know. Thanks much for helping. 

I would check again. I live 45 minute south and our city nor county requires that! If you had to have it in your name I simple have a copy of the bill sent to them every month and have them add it into the rent. Another way is to charge a flat amount at the end of the year and give them rest back when you figure out usage

HI All,

I called City and water company and here what i find out:

City: City have to pick up trash even if tenant not paying the bill. It's a health hazard. As a result, It has to be in the owner's name. The city change the policy a few years back.

Water Company: I can have tenant name on the bill and bill can be sent to tenant and landlord concurrently. However, landlord is ultimately responsible for any bill not paid by the tenant.

The reason i don't want to combine rent and water/trash bill is that I'm afraid it shows that i make more $ in rent at the end of the year when filing tax. Is my concern legitimate? For example, if i plan to charge $1200/month and i add $50 for water and $50 for trash, wouldn't that show that i actually make $1300/month in rent? 

Can someone recommend the best way to do this?

Originally posted by @Vannak Kann :

HI All,

I called City and water company and here what i find out:

City: City have to pick up trash even if tenant not paying the bill. It's a health hazard. As a result, It has to be in the owner's name. The city change the policy a few years back.

Water Company: I can have tenant name on the bill and bill can be sent to tenant and landlord concurrently. However, landlord is ultimately responsible for any bill not paid by the tenant.

The reason i don't want to combine rent and water/trash bill is that I'm afraid it shows that i make more $ in rent at the end of the year when filing tax. Is my concern legitimate? For example, if i plan to charge $1200/month and i add $50 for water and $50 for trash, wouldn't that show that i actually make $1300/month in rent? 

Can someone recommend the best way to do this?

Net result is the same either way. The utilities become an expense which will lessen your net income. If you charge more rent and cover the bills, it's a wash. Or you bill the tenant and they write the check based on their usage. It isn't hard to do. You are lucky if the utility will send the bill to you and your tenant at the same time, then the tenant sends in their payment directly to the utility. You just monitor that it was done. You'll be fine. 

Actually having the accounts in your name has the benefit of keeping you apprised of usage which can reveal interesting things about your property. If you see a spike in water usage, you may have an unauthorized tenant living there, or you make catch on to a water leak before it causes more damage.

Marcia Maynard, Fischer Properties | Podcast Guest on Show #83

Just put the water to be sent to them and include the trash in the rent.  Have a clause that says that unpaid water bills become additional rent.  

Deduct whatever you pay as an expense on the property, it is not income if you pay for it and it meets the IRS criteria.  Check out what the IRS says about business expenses.