What to do if a landlord wants their tenants to move due to a high utility bill?

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What to do if a landlord wants their tenants to move due to a high utility bill?

My boyfriend and I rent a 3 bedroom house. We pay $1000 a month and utilities are included. My landlord told me today that our power bill was high (she said it was $80) and if we don’t bring it down, or pay it ourselves, by next month then we have to move out. Our rent is very high but it hasn’t mattered until they did this. What should we do?

Asked on November 3, 2010 under Real Estate Law, Kentucky

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Do you have a lease?  If not you are month-to-month tenants your landlord is within its rights to give notice. In KY, a landlord must give you 30 days from the beginning of your periodic rental date (usually the day you pay rent).  If you have a lease you cannot be asked to leave prior to the end of the lease term.  The only exceptions would be if you are in breach of the lease.  So unless your lease has a specific provision regarding excessive electric usage (although this doesn't appear to be excessive), she cannot lawfully terminate your tenancy.

If you have any further questions, you should speak to a tenant's rights association or landlord-tenant attorney. 


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