Letter to Landlords Regarding Tenant Water Arrears
June 7, 2011
Re: Rental Property
In the past two years, the City of Kawartha Lakes written off in excess of $100,000 for uncollectable tenant occupied accounts translating to increasing rates for water and wastewater services, for all users.
In December 2010 you received a letter advising of a change in direction for collection of tenant water arrears and the future billing of water and wastewater accounts for tenant occupied properties.
The change was multi-faceted. First, any water arrears would be transferred to the property taxes for the property where the water is supplied, if the tenant failed to respond to requests for payment of outstanding amounts. Second, when water arrears were transferred to property taxes for collection, the account would be transferred to the property owner’s name. And finally, all newly tenanted properties effective January 1, 2011 would be placed in the property owner’s name and the City of Kawartha Lakes would no longer invoice tenants for water and wastewater services.
There was a presentation to Council in January 2011 expressing concern with the collection of past due water and wastewater amounts, and landlords not having the ability to include water and wastewater invoices into existing leases and, as a result did not have a mechanism to collect the amounts due on outstanding and future bills. Council requested staff conduct consultations on this process.
Since then, collections have still taken place on tenanted accounts, which have included reminder notices sent to tenants and property owners and disconnection of service. As past practice has dictated, this is not the most effective collection method for some account holders.
As part of the consultation process we are seeking your input. Please advise how you would ensure water and wastewater invoices from a rental property are paid on or before the due date to avoid the need for additional collection actions. Suggestions should ensure the municipality is not placed in financial risk where properties are tenanted. All responses will be evaluated based upon municipal legislation; workload management; and overall feasibility.
Responses must be received by Monday, June 20, 2011 at 4:30 p.m. to be taken into consideration. All responses must include your name, contact information, and subject property address to be considered in the evaluation process.
Please use the attached form to submit your comments. Comments may submitted by:
- Regular mail
- email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the reference line indicating tenant water accounts.
- Delivered to 26 Francis St., Lindsay
- Fax to 705 328 2620
Comments will not be received verbally.
We look forward to hearing from you.
Manager, Revenue and Taxation