Help before I get stuck w/ 300.00 Bill!

I have a tenant who signed year lease 4 mths ago, but has never put the water bill in there name. I never get the rent on time ever, always have to threaten to evict and get it before end of month. He has ran water bill from 50. mth which he paid up to 132. last month. He says he aint paying it as he is never there and hardly ever uses water. I had water company go out there and they said no leak so he must’ve had commode running or left spiquot on outside, but no leak. he refuses to pay. How can I get him out and get my money? He says he now wants out of his lease? What do I do to get him out and my money for water bill and the water co says this months bill coming is going to be about 150.00??? Help Please anyone. What would you do. His rent is 540. I told him I applied some of the 565.he paid me in september to light bill and somone told me I cant evict him for sept if I accepted any rent Is this true???

I don’t know what your local LL/tenant laws are, but I have to start the eviction process over completely if I accept any rent from the time I give the notice. You should have never put yourself in a position to have to pay utilities for the tenant. Our lease explicitly states that all utilities must be in the name of the tenant as of the date of the lease.
You’re most likely going to lose a good bit of money on this learning experience. Get him out as soon as you can. He sounds like nothing but a headache, but you need to educate yourself on your local laws so you don’t get put in this position again.

You’ve got a mess here. My advice:

Tell him it’s not working out. Offer him $200 to move out and forget about everything. It’ll be much cheaper than an eviction and dealing with a trashed place.

I always tell the tenant when they sign the lease and they give me their expected move in date. I tell them the utilities are scheduled for disconnect the same day they move in but if they call the utilities and schedule a transfer there will be no interruption in service. That gets the responsibility for the utilities on them from the onset and prevents me from having to defend in court a charge that I turned off their utilities on them (which is illegal in Texas)

My lease says that all monies received are applied to fees first and then to rent because in Texas the court will evict for late rent but not late fees. That means if they owe me $1000/rent and they have a bill for $5. They pay me $1,000 I apply $5 to the bill and $995 to rent. They still owe me $5 and I can still evict them for that $5 late rent.

Instead of paying them $200 to move I would evict them. That puts an eviction on their record and HELPS the next poor slob of a landlord who does a PROPER background check like you SHOULD have done to know that this guy doesn’t need to rent from ANYBODY.

He says he wants out of his lease. So let him out of the lease and take the water bill out of his deposit.

Always take the time to verify that tenants have switched the utilities.

Thanks so much, If rent is due on first when can I give him first late notice? Do I have to wait until the 10th to go to file for eviction as it will be another 10 days before court? Thanks again for helping. Any more ideas would gladly be accepted

The rent is late when it’s late according to the lease. Most places have a small grace period in place like “rent is due on the first and late after the fifth of the month.” You have to give proper notice and wait the amount of time required in your area. If the situation is not remedied during the waiting period, you can file the eviction.
I’m not at all a fan of paying someone to leave. You’re paying and training them to continue being dirtbags.

In my state, if you accepted any money for rent in September, then you cannot evict for failure to pay rent until October. This is why I do not accept partial rent payments.

You cannot take rent and tell your tenant that you are applying it to the light bill, the water bill, or anything else. If they paid the rent, they paid the rent, period.

Whatever other problems are going on may constitute a breach of a lease agreement, and therefore grounds for eviction, but that is a different matter; you may want to ask an eviction attorney.

If he wants out of his lease, let him out of his lease and do it right next time. I agree with Justin, I would never pay a tenant to leave.

Did you check with the water department to see if the bill can be transfered into their name if you provide a copy of the lease.

Yes I had it cut offlast week. He promised to put it in his name but never did. He says I am trying to stiff him with water bill cost as they are real high but water company says their is no leak.He says he aint paying fo what he never used.