Utility cost bundling
Question from Kristina updated on 29th October 2019:
Who is responsible for bottled gas supply to a tenancy? I understand that we have to pay the bottle hire fee and that the tenant pays for the gas consumed. If the account is in my name and I on-charge the tenant for gas every month I can claim the hireage portion as an expense. The problem is that the tenants want to do a bundle discounted deal with power, phone, internet and bottled gas and then on charge me the annual bottle hireage fee. Any advice?
Our expert Bernard Parker responded:
Normally, a tenant is responsible for the cost of utilities. So the tenant pays for the gas usage. Generally, the owner is responsible for the regulators and piping costs. If you wish to make an arrangement with the tenants to bundle the gas, internet, power and phone facilities for an agreed cost, that should be fine as long as you both agree on the formula.
However, there may come a time when either you or the tenant thinks it’s not such a good idea. That’s when such bundling deals come unstuck. Be prepared to revise the formula if usage becomes one-sided.
Bernard is principal of Quinovic – Kapiti-Mana. Quinovic's outstanding people and systems provide the most professional, effective and reliable residential property management service in the NZ market for over 30 years.