As the owner of rental real estate, you likely want to make your rental property as appealing as possible to attract – and retain – tenants. One way to do so is to include various items like utilities in the overall cost of the monthly rent (as versus having the tenant may them directly).
But, while doing so can certainly make life easier for your renters, which utilities are commonly paid by the property owner and which should be the tenant’s responsibility?
Although there is no single right or wrong way to allocate these expenses, oftentimes the landlord will cover the costs for water and sewer services, as well as possibly the electric or gas. Other expenses, however, such as the cable, internet, and phone service are usually left up to the tenant.
Before deciding whether you or the tenant should pay for various utilities, though, there are some important considerations to keep in mind. For instance, if the tenant does not have to worry about paying the electric or gas bill, they may end up consuming more by leaving lights on or taking extended showers.
In addition, if the tenant stops paying their rent, the landlord will still be on the hook for covering the utility bills. But if the services are in the name of the tenant, if the bill isn’t paid, the providers will come after the tenant, not you.
If you’d like to free up more of your time to pursue other opportunities, but you still want to keep the incoming cash flow from your real estate investment(s), it could be time to consider hiring a property manager.
In doing so, you can hand over a long list of “to do’s” like collecting the monthly rent, communicating with tenants, responding to emergencies, and taking care of the regularly needed property maintenance.
To learn more about how an experienced Orlando / Central Florida property management company can help you to keep your investment(s) running smoothly, Contact Us.