HOA covers some utilities.

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HOA covers some utilities.

Can I charge for the HOA if the lease states rent plus utilities? Basically, HOA covers water, sewer, trash, lawn maintenance, and community pool. I have been charging for the full HOA as a utility but recently have been challenged. Who is right?

Asked on May 29, 2009 under Real Estate Law, Texas

Answers:

B. B., Member, New Jersey Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

I'm not a Texas lawyer, and I think you need to take the lease, and perhaps a written description of the HOA charge if there's one from the HOA, to a real estate lawyer in your area.  The law in this area can be different from one state to the next, and I am quite sure that the way the lease itself is worded, among other things, will be important here.  One place to look for an attorney who can help you with this is our website, http://attorneypages.com

Ordinarily, the landlord gets to decide how the lease is worded on a "take-it-or-leave-it" basis, and many courts, because of that, give the tenant the benefit of any doubt where the wording isn't completely clear.  So you may have a problem with this one.


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