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Second year house - sharing the bills?
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sluj · 22/06/2017 17:05

DS takes the tenancy of a new house on 1st August with two mates for the second year. I'm assuming he needs to go up before they move in six weeks later and sort out the gas and electric supplies? I have visions of him turning up to start year 2 to find there is no electric on Hmm

Does anyone have any tips for connection and sharing bills? What about broadband?

In my day we had to make sure we had enough 50p pieces for the meter. That was Morecambe in the 80s. How simple was that!!!!

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londonloves · 22/06/2017 17:16

The letting agency might sort it out, they will probably give the utilities company the name of the lead tenant on the letting contract. Or they may just get a bill to 'the occupier' once they've been there for a few weeks, then they'll need to sort out who pays which bill. I doubt the electricity will have been switched off over the summer. They will probably need to switch the boiler etc back in though.

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londonloves · 22/06/2017 17:19

If there's three of them, I would recommend they each register a utility in their own name (gas, electric and water) so they all will have a bill with their name on as proof of address. Then the one who's the most organised out of the three of them should work out the imbalance of payments as all the bills will be different, and they can all settle up once a fortnight. A proper spreadsheet and good record keeping is sensible in case of disagreements.
There might be good freshers week offers on broadband so might be worth them waiting til the start of term to set that up- they've probably all got 3G mobiles they can hotspot from if they need to.

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RTKangaMummy · 22/06/2017 17:25

DS in year 2 had electric and gas on meter that they took turns to top up at local shop

Broadband and water was incl in rent

They had book to write in each time they topped up and how much so it was fair

In year 3 he had everything included in rent, broadband, tv licence, gas, electric and water SmileSmileSmile

BTW students should not pay council tax they are exempt

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RTKangaMummy · 22/06/2017 17:26

They were in different flat then house each year

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Needmoresleep · 22/06/2017 17:32

He should check that a formal inventory will be done. It should. The inventory clerk takes gas and electricity readings, and possibly water.

When they move in they simply inform the utilities people. (Helpful if the lettings agency lets them know who supplied the previous tenancy.) Or it will have been done for them by the lettings agency.

Phone/broadband is more complicated. Again useful to know who previously supplied the property, and any landline number as they may need to get it transferred to their preferred supplier. This can take a couple of weeks (or more...). Now TV, a subsidiary of Sky is worth a look, as they don't require contracts.

They should inform the Local Authority that they are exempt from Council Tax.

Worth working out in advance who takes lead responsibility, and informing the letting agency. One set of bills each sounds like a good idea.

If a formal inventory has not been done they should note the condition of the property and any obvious marks, damage, loose tiles etc and take photos, including photos of meter readings and send it all to the lettings agency. Not least it would discourage any less than straightforward landlord from playing games of a deposit return.

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CrewsInn · 22/06/2017 19:19

DS1 used Glide, a company that splits the bills between tenants. It works out a bit dearer but not by much. There are other similar companies.
DS2 has all utilities included which is much easier.
Broadband was the trickiest as it takes a while to set up and they really didn't want to move in without internet (no massive data contracts and they want to use pc/laptop). Worth trying to set up BB in advance of moving if possible.

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sluj · 25/06/2017 09:58

Thanks for the advice. Now I need to get DS to actually start thinking about it

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AtiaoftheJulii · 25/06/2017 10:37

Re sharing costs - dd1 and her housemates use splitwise. She also uses it with her wider group of friends for borrowing and lending money and sharing costs generally.

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CrewsInn · 25/06/2017 10:49

That solitaire app looks great thanks Atia. I've passed it on to DS.

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Needmoresleep · 25/06/2017 10:50

As well as an inventory, the letting agent should also provide copies of:

  • the deposit certificate
  • the Gas Safe certificate.

    The inventory clerk is also, I understand, supposed to have checked that the fire alarm is working and checked that there is a carbon monoxide detector. However I would also do this when moving the students move in. Regulations are complicated and have recently changed. Current ones are, I think, a heat detector in the kitchen and a smoke alarm on every floor. Ideally they are wired in, as tenants often take out batteries. The carbon monoxide ones are problematic. They tend to be placed out of the way, say on the top of a cupboard near, but not too near, the boiler, but tend to disappear. They don't cost much, and if you can't find one, I would simply buy one and stick it in the property.
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RTKangaMummy · 25/06/2017 12:10

Oh yes do take lots of photos of furniture, carpets and curtains, also walls (well everything to be sure)

Especially if you see any damage or stains

That is the easiest way to show that it was like that on moving in day

Then email the photos to yourself to give a date that can't be disputed later

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Allthebestnamesareused · 25/06/2017 21:25

Sone student tenancies include bills. DS and his friends' included utilities, broadband and basic sky tv!!!

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Eggandchipsfortea93 · 25/06/2017 21:31

Its likely that its all set up, if its been a student house this year, and your DS and his friends will just get a letter as 'new occupier' and take it on. It may also be that the tenancy agreement tells you this sort of info, and may include a clause that they have to get landlords permission or at least notify him, if they want to change supplier.
So I'd start by checking what the situation is with the landlord or letting agent, by email, before making any arrangements.

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