What happens if your tenant moves out and ends the tenancy without paying their utility bills?
Landlords will not have to pay for any unpaid utility bills left at the end of the tenancy so long as the tenancy agreement outlines that tenants are responsible for utility bills. If the tenancy agreement doesn’t clearly assign responsibility to the tenants, the landlord may find themselves liable for the bills. As such, we’d advise checking over your tenancy agreement to find the relevant clause. The OpenRent tenancy agreement includes a clause to cover this as standard, so if you use our Rent Now tenancy-creation service, you will be covered on this.
As a landlord, you should always:
- Let your council know when there is a change in tenancy. You should provide names of the new tenants and the contact details of the previous tenants.
- Inform the property's energy (gas, electric) and water suppliers of any change in tenancy.
- Take a meter reading at the start and end of each tenancy. This should be taken on the actual move day if possible, to ensure accurate billing.
- If all parties have agreed that tenants are responsible for utility bills, ensure your tenancy agreement outlines this.
- Keep a signed copy of the tenancy agreement. If your tenancy was created using Rent Now, the tenancy agreement can be found when logged into your OpenRent account in your Rent Now manager here.
The tenants are responsible from the start date of the tenancy. Incoming tenants will not be responsible for any unpaid utility bills from the previous tenancy.
When the utility bills are in the name of the tenants, landlords should not be required to pay any remaining payments after their tenant has left.
Information on this site is by way of general guidance only and may not apply in your particular circumstances. You should not act or refrain from acting upon information on this site without seeking independent legal advice.