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When can a landlord charge for gas and electricity?

Depending on what is written into your tenancy agreement, your landlord may be able to charge you for electricity and gas.

When can a landlord charge for gas and electricity?

Have a look at the tenancy agreement you are expected to sign to make sure who is responsible to pay these bills and to whom. You will not have to pay your energy bills direct to the suppliers if your tenancy agreement stipulates that you have to pay them to your landlord.

The circumstances under which you might find that you have to pay electricity and gas bills to your landlord include the following:

1) Renting from a boatyard owner whereby you pay the moorings manager for energy services used on a houseboat.

2) Renting on a caravan or trailer park when you will have to pay the site owner for energy service bills.

3) Renting a holiday home whereby you pay the owner of the property for the energy you consume.

4) Renting a flat or house and pay your energy bills direct to the landlord.

Maximum Price Landlords can Charge

The maximum amount landlords can claim from you for electricity and gas is stipulated by law. Referred to as the maximum resale price, you may be able to challenge this amount if you feel you are being over charged by your landlord. How your landlord calculates the amount you owe for electricity and gas is dependent on whether there is a meter for recording how much you have used.

Recorded energy use by meter.

If there are electricity and gas meters in the property you will pay a proportion of the standing charges at the same price as your landlord pays to the energy suppliers, plus the units you have used. Your landlord is not allowed to charge more than the domestic rate for energy irrespective of his arrangements with the energy suppliers. If he has commercial contracts with them, this is not your problem – since the domestic tariff applies to you.

Energy use without a meter

If you don’t have dedicated electricity and gas meters for the property you are renting, the energy consumption should be calculated by your landlord proportionately.On request, your landlord must demonstrate how those costs have been calculated. Should the landlord refuse or not provide you with this information within a reasonable period of time, you may be able to claim compensation.

Your landlord can only charge you for the electricity and gas that you have consumed and this is what his bill to you must reflect.

Landlords must produce separate bills for administration and other charges such as common area lighting or costs of producing the bills. There is no legal maximum for these types of services so it is always best to get these confirmed at the time of signing the tenancy agreement.

Disputes with Landlords regarding electricity and gas charges If you disagree with the amount your landlord is charging you for energy consumption you should initially ask for an explanation as to how the costs have been calculated.

If you still feel that the costs are excessive the best thing to do is try to resolve the matter amicably but if this is not possible you can call the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline for assistance.


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