When Can You Charge a Tenant for Water?

As water charges are forecast to jump considerably on the back of the cost of waterproofing South East Queensland, it is timely to revisit when a lessor/agent can pass on charges for water usage to the tenant.

Lessors are only allowed to pass on the full water consumption costs to tenants if:

  • the rental premises are individually metered (or water is delivered by vehicle); and
  • the rental premises are water efficient; and
  • the tenancy agreement states the tenant must pay for water consumption.

Water efficient premises should meet the 3-star WELS rating, which is:

  • a maximum flow rate of nine litres per minute for showerheads, internal cold water taps and single mixer taps (excluding taps for bathtubs and appliances); and
  • dual flush toilets using less than 6.5 litres on full flush, 3.5 litres on half flush and 4 litres for the average flush volume (based on the average of one full flush and four half flushes).

If the premises are individually metered but not water efficient, and the agreement states the tenant must pay for water, the lessor must pay for a reasonable amount of water.

Click here for the full fact sheet provided by the RTA

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