Can our landlord demand back payment of the water bill?

It was in his name for the 5 years that we lived there. It was in the lease that we pay all utilities, yet he never took it out of his name, nor did he ask us to put it in ours. We had not signed a lease since that first year, so were living month-to-month for the majority of our tenancy.

Asked on July 16, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Pennsylvania


Andrew Goldberg

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

If the lease specifically states the tenant is responsible for utilities and the water bill is a utility, then it is my opinion that you are contractually obligated to pay it. My problem is the neglectful landlord is asking you to pay it all at once. Had the landlord paid attention to the utilities, you would have paid it on a monthly basis rather than all at once. Tell the landlord that you will, therefore, pay the total in 60 equal installments. Otherwise, tell him to pound sand!!

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