I m renting out my house do I have to pay for their utility bills?

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“By renting your house, does this mean you are renting your entire house and not just rooms in the house. You are not required to pay the utility bills of your rental unit. This is a responsibility of your tenant.

You are not able to determine the amount of the utility your tenant would use. This could be a very costly expense.

If this is the case you should have a clause in your lease that the utilities should be turned on within 5 days of signing the lease agreement.

You might further add to this clause you would inspect the rental to ensure the utilities are on, or require them to present you with the order to turn on the utilities.

This clause would prevent your tenants from occupying the house without water or other utilities that might make living in the rental unsanitary

I hope this has been of some benefit to you, good luck.”

“I have a bit of a different outlook. There is something in the lease about them paying utilities … something about the utilities needs to be turned on for the entire length of the lease. I will add that to my leases. I was talking to one utility or another and the man on the phone said that if a tenant doesn’t pay his bill it defaults to me. I would have to pay. I told him I have no way of knowing who the tenant gets his utilities from and I have nothing to do with how much deposit you charge or how you do business. But if you try to charge me for someone you gave service to, you will be talking to my lawyer. Here in Texas, you can go to the Attorney General’s site and file a claim and your proof and you fill out all the forms and follow all the rules, then they MAY take your case and you have the Attorney General of Texas as your attorney. I won against a utility company already and I would try it again. You do need to have separate meters although I see on here that some landlords and I don’t know where, dole out utility costs by percentages. It doesn’t sound fair and not sure about legal.”


“This all depends on the wording in the rental agreement/lease. Some include utilities and some don’t.

However, when it comes to renting out a house….it is NORMAL for the tenants to pay for their own Utilities.

In the rental agreement/lease…. you MUST include a sentence stating ‘tenant is responsible for paying All of the utilities’.”


“If the lease doesn’t indicate that they are responsible for the utilities then yes, you are. I would have thought anyone planning on renting property would have thought of such things. As a renter my leases have always made it clear to me that I am responsible for the gas, electric and cable bills effective with the move in date. It is up to the renter to contact the utility companies and get those bills set up in their name – the landlord also contacts the utility companies with the date the landlord no longer is responsible for payment of those bills. Therefore, the gas and electric are shut off until the tenant makes arrangements and the landlord isn’t stuck with the utility bills. The cost of the water is figured into my rent.”


“Not if you are renting out the whole house and will not be there. They should be paying for all utilities including electricity, gas, water, sewage, and garbage. Now you must state that in the lease they are responsible. If some things remain in your name (which can be required) then you send them a copy of the bill.”


“It is illegal for landlords to charge for utilities on the same meter as tenants (in the USA)- they must be separate meters unless you live in the same unit. Then the utilities should be paid proportionally.

I met a landlord who used to pay the water bill, but a tenant did not report a malfunctioning toilet and the bill went into the thousands, so now he has tenants pay water. It was a two-family house, separate meters for each unit.

If you have multiple units, each can only be charged if it’s on a separate meter. Otherwise you have to include it in the rent (a risky move for landlords).”

“If you don’t change the name on the utility accounts – then you will still be responsible for paying the bills. Whether you choose to charge them extra rent to cover bills, or require them to take over the utility accounts is up to you..”

“Some utility bills in rentals are regulated locally, such as places where the landlord must provide “heat and water”, and may bill tenants accordingly, but only if separately metered. Other places allow the LL to simply have one tenant transfer the accounts to the next one, or require a new tenant to get new accounts..”


“You should consider this in your agreement to rent, generally most landlords charge an amount for rent and the tenants are responsible for their own utilities

sometimes the landlord will pay the water to make sure the tenants keep up the landscaping.”

“No. State it in the lease that tenant pays for utility bills.”


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