Am I a reasonable landlord?
February 3, 2010 7:43 PM Subscribe
As a Texas landlord, was it my responsibility to make sure my tenants knew about turning on the gas?
posted by anonymous to Law & Government (16 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
YANAL, or at least YANML. It won't come to that anyway, I think.
I had tenants move in to this house I had previously lived in in October. I'm not sure that this is the case, but for the sake of argument let's say that I didn't explicitly tell them that they needed to get their gas turned on, so they didn't.
No one figured this out until December, when it finally was physically turned off. Because of complications unrelated to my question it took a few days to turn it back on and during those few days the only tenant at home was blasting space heaters and apparently cycling on the electric pilot in the heater as it tried to light and went out. Because of this or not, their electric bill that month was about twice normal. They want me to pay the difference and I'm paying half of the difference, which I feel is both way more than I'm obligated to do and way more than any landlord I've heard of would do.
On the lease it sais fairly unambiguously that utilities are the tenant's responsibility. However, is it my responsibility to make sure they know everything they need to do when they move in? Am I responsible for the difference in the electric bill that month?
If so, how do I keep a record that I told them?