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Tenants not paying water bill by M&M (MN) on November 6, 2011 @13:51

I have just received notice from our city that our tenants have not paid their water bill of $714 and that if we don't pay it Nov 17th our delinquent utility will be turned over to the county, who will assess it against our property taxes.

If we choose pay this, can we legally deduct this amount from their rental payment thus putting them in arrears on their rent?

Can we legally tell the water company to cut off the water to this residence if they don't pay it?
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Re: Tenants not paying water bill by Jake on November 6, 2011 @14:07 [ Reply ]
What does your lease say about the water bill?
Re: Tenants not paying water bill by Anonymous on November 6, 2011 @15:55 [ Reply ]
You need to provide them with your state's cure or quit notice to cure the lease violation of not paying the utility accounts. Your state's LL/T will tell you exactly how many days you must allow to cure. I would not pay the bill, but would instruct the water company to shut off the service. If they haven't paid the bill within the c/q period, you need to evict based on this material breach of the rental agreement. You can deduct the water bill from their SD, along with any other damages and unpaid rent, after you have evicted them.
Re: Tenants not paying water bill by Anna Mouse on November 6, 2011 @18:04 [ Reply ]
Is this a situation where they could put part of Novembers rent toward the water bill and then notify them that they still owe rent?

However allowing the water to be shut off may be a reasonable solution. I would find out what the turn on fee is.

What happens to the property when they cannot flush the toilet?

I would find out how long until the water is shut off so you know when the XXXX will hit the fan. (sorry could not help myself) Get going on that eviction today because if you can get that moving and going before the water is shut off better yet.
Re: Tenants not paying water bill by Eric (MN) on November 6, 2011 @19:37 [ Reply ]
NEVER shut off water to a residence, even if you can. The water company likely will not. What will happen is the tenants will do what they always do, assuming they have water. The new variable is there is no longer water to move things to where they should go.

Secondly, NEVER let a tenant pay a bill that can be assessed directly to the property. Include it in the rent, or watch it just like you do the rent.

A $700 indicates you were not watching. They might not have even known about the water bill to pay. Does your lease say they need to specifically pay for water? Or just all utilities? Did you check? How do they even know the amount, it typically gets sent to the Owner. Did you tell them the amounts?

You can likely evict, but let them have time to pay. MN is the highest cost eviction state in the Nation, complements of the DFL. You cannot divert rent payments to the water bill.
Re: Tenants not paying water bill by Anonymous on November 6, 2011 @20:52 [ Reply ]
I have the exact same problem with my tenant. I did let the water get turned off and called the water dept the next day to see if they got it turned back on or I would have paid it but they did pay. I figured one day without water would not cause harm and it made them pay up. I figure the health dept isn't going to come after me for one day without water. People keep saying add it to the rent but the problem is with alot of us if I did that I would not get any renters as the rent would appear to be too high.
Re: Tenants not paying water bill by Anonymous on November 7, 2011 @03:28 [ Reply ]
Have you discussed this with your renters? Firmly tell them they have to pay this bill ASAP, as you will have to evict when the water company comes out and turns off the water. The water company has ways to see that the bill is paid.
It is not your delinquent utility, it is theirs.

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