How to charge tenants for garbage pick up....

5 Replies


I manage 70 low-Income apartments in Grand Forks, ND and I love it!

Lately, I've had a problem with tenants throwing large garbage items like beds, bed frames, desks... etc out by the dumpster. That is fine because that's where it has to go for pick-up, but we state in our lease that we charge tenants when we have to call for pick-up since we get charged by the garbage company to pick-up those large garbage items. 

So my question is does anybody else do this? If so, what have you found to be the best way to keep track of which tenants are throwing away large garbage items?

The only method obvious to me is setting up a camera. 

Thank you!

How about requiring the tenant to write their name or apartment number on the item being disposed?  Then separately confirm by text or email a picture of the items to you so no one can throw something out and write down their neighbors names.  Un-named items will have the cost shared by all tenants so they will watch each other?

Sounds like some good ideas Sam. Thanks for your suggestions! The only problem I can think of is Im afraid tenants wouldn't write their name on the garbage just to be charged for it. 

Camera sounds like only reliable way to monitor this or just bump everyone's rent a couple dollars to cover it and don't police it.

With low income, maybe you can set up an area where they can bring their old stuff, stop by the office and you give them a sticker with their id (name, or apt number, whatever so you know who) and they put the sticker on the item.

Then any other resident who wants the item can stop by the office and for $5 buy the item.  You have the items available for 1 week, then if not bought, you dispose of it.  

If sold, you give the $5 to the original owner.  If not sold, you know who to charge for the disposal.

One man's junk may be someone else's treasure at that income level.  And they may be more willing to identify their junk at the gamble they may sell it for the $5.