Gas and Electricity bills

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    Gas and Electricity charges? Who is responsible


    The following is provided to ensure that both landlord and tenant are aware and understand who is responsible for gas and electricity charges within any properties that are let.


    Who is responsible
    You are responsible for the bills and charges for any property that you own and occupy as well as those which are empty but also owned by you.


    If a property that you own is occupied by a tenant, then the tenancy agreement must specify who is responsible for paying the bills and detail the measures used to ensure this happens such as amending the names on bills and the use of direct debits where applicable.


    Utility providers will need to be notified by the new tenant of meter readings and move dates by telephone, in writing or online. Any previous charges relating to the property are the responsibility of the previous tenant.


    A utility bill containing multiple names places the responsibility of payment onto all those named even if only one person is paying the bill.
    Upon notification of vacancy the contract between tenant and supplier will cease. If there is no replacement tenant, then responsibility for payment reverts to the owner of the property.


    Contracts and Liability
    If an express contract with the gas or electricity supplier is entered into, the liability to pay will be with the customer who is the bill payer. The contract may be entered into, either, (usually) in writing or online and will incorporate the supplier’s standard terms and conditions. These will also make provision for when responsibility for payment ends – see further below.


    If there is no express contract, under the Electricity Code or Gas Code there may alternatively be a deemed contract. The Codes provide that where an electricity or gas supplier supplies electricity or gas to a property, otherwise than under an express contract, the supplier is treated as contracting with the occupier(or the owner of the property if it is unoccupied) for the supply as from the time when the supplier began to make the supply. In effect by taking a supply you become the bill payer even in the absence of a written request/agreement. The terms and conditions, of this deemed contract, will be laid down by each supplier in their own terms and conditions.


    Changes in responsibility
    A supplier’s terms and conditions will provide that the current bill payer will no longer be responsible for paying once they cease to occupy (or own) the property provided they give notice (usually two working days) before vacating.Otherwise, liability will terminate on (1) the date (usually two working days) after notification to a supplier of vacation (or of a new occupier)
              or

    (2) the date that electricity/gas is supplied to the property under a new contract (i.e. to someone else). This may be a new contract signed up with the supplier or it may be under a deemed contract as provided for by the Code because a new occupier (or the owner) has started to take a supply.

     

    by: Tenancy Central uploaded July 31, 2018