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Question for those who are landlords or renters

May 16th, 2017 at 11:54 am

I am being told I have to leave the electricity and water on in my name for 5 business days after I leave. Is this normal? It is not in my lease, but it is on the checkout list I received when I gave my notice. I talked to the property manager and told her I am not comfortable for paying for a place I no longer live in legally after the 31st. She was polite, but she said this is standard and I won't receive my deposit if I turn the utilities off early. This house is owned by an individual not a company. I also have no idea if anyone will be living here in those five days. I know when I moved in, it was one day after the other tenant left.

11 Responses to “Question for those who are landlords or renters”

  1. jokeabee Says:

    As a landlord and a renter, that doesn't sound right to me. Does your city have a housing department you can ask about the legality of it?

    I had to keep utilities in my name in one apartment until my lease was over, even though I surrendered the keys and moved out a week early. I was upset about having to pay for the electricity/water/etc for them to clean but it was a nightmare situation that was finally ending so I didn't press it much.

  2. stephanie Says:

    I live in Florida and have been both a renter and landlord. I have never heard of this provision before. I googled Florida Landlord tenant law and nothing concerning utilities remaining on came up. I would check your lease agreement and ask for legal reference. I wouldn't do it....

  3. creditcardfree Says:

    Doesn't sound right to me. A legal reference would be best. And you could talk to the utility companies as well.

  4. Bluebird Says:

    I'm a landlord, and I've never required a tenant to keep utilities in their name after the lease expiration date. If your lease does not state the 5 day provision, I would absolutely dispute it. Furthermore, they should return your deposit once you've shown them final payment was made for the utilities through the lease expiration.

  5. AnotherReader Says:

    Sounds like the property management company wants you to pay for utilities during the turnover. Read your lease. This may be in there to protect the property from freezing weather after you move out if the property manager cannot get the utilities on right away. This is summer so there should not be an issue.

  6. livingalmostlarge Says:

    Nope as a tenant the day we move out and our lease is done.

  7. LuckyRobin Says:

    It's not standard and it smells fishy to me. I don't think that is legal if it is not in the lease. I think it is actually illegal to not return a deposit for any reason other than damages to the rental. And if they are playing these kind of games with you, you might want to insist on an in person walk down of the rental so they don't try to pull anything like claiming false damages to keep your deposit, because you won't pay for utilities you are not using. Film it and make them sign off on it that there are no damages.

  8. nhgirl1970 Says:

    I plan on videoing the place when I leave if they can't do a walk through with me. The water company said it is common in this area to keep the utilities on for a few days after the lease. I realize it won't come to a lot of money, but it is the principle of the matter. I live in Florida, so it isn't like the weather is an issue. I know it is the property management company wanting me to have it in my name so they don't have to deal with it. Thank you all for confirming this is highly unusual.

  9. Debt-free by Thir-ty Says:

    I definitely understand your concern. I don't think it's standard, but I understand the logic behind it. In order to keep utilities on, they'd have to switch it to their name for the one week turnover and then switch it again when the new tenant moves in.

    I know when we moved into our last place (privately owned), the previous tenants had agreed to leave the utilities on for two more weeks until we moved in. We also agreed to keep them on for one week after we moved.

  10. crazyliblady Says:

    I am not a landlord, but I have never heard of this. To find out what the law is in your state, check here: [url]http://realestate.findlaw.com/landlord-tenant-law/chart...

  11. nhgirl1970 Says:

    I voiced my concern, and the property manager pretty much said what Jazzy said. It would be a lot of work to change utilities back to the owner for just a few days before the new renter moves in. They need it on for cleaning purposes. I told her since I am leaving around 6 am on the 31st, I think leaving it in my name until the 5th is too long. I told her the place will be nearly spotless anyhow. I compromised and agreed to the 2nd. I also offered to hang around until later that morning on the 31st for a walk through. She said since she was here (She was showing it the other day),she did not see a reason to do so. I let her know I would be taking a video before I leave.

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