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Pay As You Go Electric Meter

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So Iv had a house rented out for 6 year and the electric meter is a pay as you go one that is broken. It’s been like it for as long as Iv had it. And never had to pay for electric. When I 1st noticed it 6year ago I had it checked out by an electrician. And I was told it was a faulty box/meter. Nothing has been tampered with to by pass it. So Iv just left it with the tenant who has now moved out. Has any one had this or seen this before ? And what should I do ? 

Edited by scott j

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1 hour ago, scott j said:

And what should I do ? 

Inform the electricity board and have it fixed. 
 

I know a couple of people (one electricity, one BT) who have ended up having to pay large, back dated estimates after long periods of not being billed. I assume that pay as you go is the same, as the electricity consumption will be metered somewhere.

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That what I’m scared of. 🤦🏼‍♂️  6 years of electricity. I do want to tell them. 

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Here’s a suggestion, but it is not based on having to deal with this situation.  As your tenant has moved out you could change your supplier and ask for a normal meter to be installed.  Then keep your fingers crossed regarding backdated estimated readings.  I imagine your tenancy contract specifies that utilities are your tenant’s responsibility so you could argue that if they try to bill you.

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Sounds like a good plan.

 

You can prove you were not living at the house and so are not responsible for the electricity payments, but you're under no obligation to provide upto date contact details for the tenant.

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I'm no expert but l saw a programme recently on TV where a Takeaway had "nicked" electricity. They ended up with a massive bill in the end but they were doing it illegally.  The issue that you are faced with is that you have known for the last 6 years your meter was faulty and done nothing about it since your original investigation. It was your responsibility so it would be viewed as your bill. I suspect that whomever is your electricity supplier currently will send you the bill to pay, be it estimated or actual,there will also be standing charges etc so this could add up to a very substantial bill. You may have to pursue your former tenant to reclaim your money from him/her, they must have thought they had hit the jackpot living in your property...l know l would. I may be wrong here, however it is going to cost you in the end.

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A Private landlord is required to ensure the basic electrical safety of their property, see here.

 

That doesn't really require them to ensure the electricity meter is charging correctly though, as it's not actually their property they shouldn't interfere with it anyway.

They're also not required to chase tenants on behalf of utility companies.

 

If there's no evidence the meter has been tampered with, how can anyone prove the landlord knew it was not charging properly?

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7 hours ago, ttparsons said:

I imagine your tenancy contract specifies that utilities are your tenant’s responsibility so you could argue that if they try to bill you.

Whose name is the account in?
 

If it is in your name then it is completely irrelevant what your tenancy contract specifies. It is you who has the contract with your electricity supplier, not your tenant. It is very unlikely that a new supplier will take you on with an outstanding debt.

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The supplier is British Gas. It’s a pay as you go metre. I phoned them up 2days ago About changing my old tenants name into the new one.. nothing was asked about if the meter is broken.. so I’m presuming from there end it all seems fine and there is no debt. So I  think what I’m going to do tell the tenant to ring them up put her name down as the new tenant and tell them the pay as you go meter box is faulty. And hope for the best. 

5 hours ago, Top Cats Hat said:

Whose name is the account in?
 

If it is in your name then it is completely irrelevant what your tenancy contract specifies. It is you who has the contract with your electricity supplier, not your tenant. It is very unlikely that a new supplier will take you on with an outstanding debt.

The bills are all in the tenants name, Water, gas, electricity, council, tax... 

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Do a final reading and swap it into your name, get a new supplier and get a new meter.

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Just tell them you want a new meter an ordinary one not a pay as you go they are trying to get every one to change do not swap companys keep it simple 

Keep it in tenants name then they wont come after you

Edited by spider1

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If this is a pay as you go meter l assume it is with a card/token not cash. If that is the case then there is nothing to worry about.

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