landlord tenant relationships and bills

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  1. #1

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    landlord tenant relationships and bills

    I have two semi-disputes currently with commercial and residential land lords. I would appreciate advice!

    1. I just finished a contract on a flat. The water supplies bills were in my landlord's name but we paid them when they came. After moving out, my landlord called and asked us to pay a $3,000 water charge, which apparently is because the water people were estimating readings (due to some inability to access meter) and when finally reading the meter the estimate was wildly wrong. According to the water dept, only registered water-user can file a complaint at high water charge. the landlord is threatening to deduct it from my deposit. I like my showers, but this charge is ridiculous no?

    2. My small commercial office is rented at $x,xxx per month inclusive of rates and management fee. There is no security in the building as it is mainly an old chinese residential building. I received a bill today from another tenant asking us to pay the communal electricity bill once every 6 months (as there are 6 tenants). The bill is $170. Should i be liable to pay over $300 a year in electricity when the charge is not mentioned in my contract? Shouldn't this be covered under 'management fees'??

    Another thing i was wondering is whether or not living in a commercial building is legal. Most buildings in hong kong seem to have both businesses and residential together!

    Help is most appreciated.


  2. #2

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    $3000 would be about 10 years supply of water for a normal apartment - there's something dodgy there.


  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by PDLM:
    $3000 would be about 10 years supply of water for a normal apartment - there's something dodgy there.
    I agree! But if the land lord refuses to dispute the cost and won't give me my deposit, what can i do?

  4. #4

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    If he shows you copies of the bills from the water company then you have a problem (the problem being that you didn't validate the meter reading when you moved in).

    If he refuses then you can sue in the small claims court for your deposit back.


  5. #5

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    It is also the landlord's and the estate agent's duty (or responsibility) to ensure that all meter readings are recorded.

    Unless he can prove what the meter reading was when you moved in, you can take this to small claims and argue the number down.