All good property management agencies will recommend that their lessors invest in obtaining a water compliance certificate. This enables the landlord to charge tenants for their water consumption. While the lessor has the onus to prove that the property is water efficient, there is no legal requirement for a water efficiency certificate. Water efficiency certificates are the easiest way and most recommended way to provide evidence to the tenant should there be a dispute about the property being water efficient.
In order to charge tenants for their full water consumption :
1. The property must be individually metered (or water is delivered by vehicle), and
2. The property must be water efficient, and
3. The tenancy agreement must state the tenant is to pay for water consumption
Calibre Real Estate’s Principal, Alice Hagen, shares with us her top tip for water invoicing your investment property. Alice has been in the Real Estate & Property Management industry for almost ten years now and has witnessed thousands property dealings in her time. Calibre Real Estate is committed to always ensuring their property owners and tenants alike are well looked after. This includes always keeping their finger on the pulse to pass on savings to their landlords and tenants wherever possible.
Calibre’s Principal, Alice Hagen, shares her tips for Water Consumption Invoicing.
“Being an investor doesn’t have to be a costly exercise, providing you have appointed an efficient property manager. As with electricity charges, in our opinion, tenants should also be required to pay for their water consumption usage. In Queensland, in order to seek reimbursement of full water consumption usage from tenants, your property needs to meet the Residential Tenancies Authority (RTA) guidelines.
In my experience with the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT), I have found the easiest way to be water compliant is to obtain a water efficiency certificate signed by a plumber.
Simply put, this requires all internal cold water taps and single mixer taps (excluding bathtub taps and taps for appliances) and showerheads to flow at a maximum rate of 9 litres per minute. The other requirement is that the toilets have a dual flush function not exceeding 6.5 litres on full flush and 3.5 litres on half flush. The toilet’s maximum average flush volume must be 4 litres. This is based on the average of 1 full flush and 4 half flushes.
Once your investment property is confirmed to be water efficient, a water meter reading is taken. Throughout the tenancy, Calibre relies on the Utilities provider to issue the quarterly invoice. From there, we produce an invoice to the tenants seeking reimbursement of the water consumption charges. Tenants have 30 days from the date of our invoice to pay this. Tenants are issued with a notice to remedy breach if they fail to pay this invoice within the required period. The breach The breach subsequently becomes a dispute resolution with the RTA should the water invoice issued to the tenants remains unpaid. A final water meter reading is conducted by our team at the vacate inspection, ensuring that the tenants have reimbursed all water consumption charges throughout their tenancy.”subsequently becomes a dispute resolution with the RTA . A final water meter reading is conducted by our team at the vacate inspection.”
Visit the RTA’s website for further information about water consumption.
For other articles that will assist your property investment see :
- 8 Value Adding Improvements to Secure Better Rent Return
- Why Is My Water Bill So High? And How To Fix It.
- 5 Things You Need To Know About Claiming Tax Depreciation on Your Property
- How To Ensure Rental Return Makes Your Investment More Fruitful
- 3 Clever Ways That’ll Save You Money On Big Ticket Household Items
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