Our landlord didn't tell us that we don't have our own meter (elect.). I wanted to know our rights in regards to this- reimbursement, general, etc.I live in CT, and rent a 3rd floor (atttic) apt....
Our landlord didn't tell us that we don't have our own meter (elect.). I wanted to know our rights in regards to this- reimbursement, general, etc.
I live in CT, and rent a 3rd floor (atttic) apt. The landlord (as stated in lease) pays the 1st $80 on the electric bill, and we pay the remainder. (in the ad, it was stated - utils incl.) Anyway, I found out that there ar only 3 meters. Our meter is the "owners meter". The electric comp. didn't even know there is a 3rd apt. He told me that this meter is all common areas etc. Well, I've been wondering why our bill seemed so high! The electric company won't give me info because I'm not listed on the acct-the lanlord is; And he's not someone who "oops, I forgot to install a 4th meter". He uses his "poor understanding of english"to his advantage- which isn't accurate. He's been a landlord for over 10 years and has MULTIPLE tenents. I don't even know where to begin, except that I know tht we are paying TOO much for a tiny apt nad its because we "don't exist" according to the electric comp.
I do not practice law in Connecticut, but as a general rule, there are landlord/tenant statutes that address utility issues between landlords and tenants. Your landlord/tenant statute is sure to be on-line and can be found by just using those words in Google plus the name of your state. The other avenue to pursue is to see if your state has a utility commission. A look on-line on your state's web site should elicit this information.
There is no doubt that you are not supposed to be paying for the electricity for the common areas of the building, but what your recourse is will be a matter of state law. One likely way to pursue the matter is to sue your landlord at your local magistrate. The electric company should be able to give you an estimate of the amount that the common areas account for on your electric bill, and that is the amount you should sue for.
Also, if you are income-eligible and your county has an organization that represents clients for free or on a sliding scale, you might want to get in touch with them. Your local bar association should be able to tell you if there is an organization like this.
Good luck to you.