“When it comes to utility and service charges, how do I determine who is responsible for what if the property has a separate meter?” (Owner, NSW)

We asked MMJ Real Estate Dapto Property ManagerLaura McDiarmid for her advice.

“A simple way to think about this is that your tenant is responsible for any services where there’s a choice of the utility provider,” Laura said.

“This could include things such as electricity, internet, gas, NBN/phone or Foxtel,” for example.”

“However, any fixed property fees like rates charges (such as council rates, water rates and strata levies) are the owner’s cost and cannot be passed on to the tenant.”

Laura said the water usage component can be in charged to the tenant if the property has been fitted with water saver devices.

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Laura McDiarmid

Laura has worked within the real estate industry for over a decade and has vast knowledge and understanding of what it takes to achieve success for her clients.