WhatcanI do if there is an obvious problem with my electric billbut my landlord refuses todo anything about it?

I moved to a complex a little over 3 months ago, mid-month. Each month I got a $700 average monthly bill for the electricity; way too high that what is supposed to be. I have only 5 lights 2 small TV’s and the A/C. When I talked with the leasing office and explained to them my problem they agreed that there was a problem with the electricity. After long visits at the leasing office they agree that I would pay the electricity company the bill instead of paying rent because the problem is from their side and not mine. Now they changed their mind and they don’t want to take responsibility for that.

Asked on August 27, 2011 Florida


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Have you had any one from the electric company come down or a private electrician come in to see if there is a problem with the wiring, etc.?  Please do so and give yourself some ammunition for taking the landlord and the leasing company to court, because that is where you need to head.  As for the agreement, if they did not give it to you in writing then you are stuck.  The agreement you spoke of is a modification of the lease and that can only be done in writing and signed by them on behalf of the landlord.  An oral agreement will not be upheld.  I think that they thought better of the matter and figured out that they would probably be liable for the rent should you not pay it if they agreed to such a change.  So start collecting evidence and then take them to court.  Make sure that you pay the rent in to court each month and ask for an abatement (reduction).  Good luck.

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