Electric Issue
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Electric Issue (by Matt [WI]) Oct 2, 2008 12:44 PM
       Electric Issue (by sid [MO]) Oct 2, 2008 1:07 PM
       Electric Issue (by Andrew, [ON]) Oct 2, 2008 1:20 PM
       Electric Issue (by Matt [WI]) Oct 2, 2008 1:32 PM
       Electric Issue (by Brenda [TX]) Oct 2, 2008 1:44 PM
       Electric Issue (by Matt [WI]) Oct 2, 2008 1:55 PM
       Electric Issue (by Dana [CA]) Oct 2, 2008 2:53 PM
       Electric Issue (by DaveS [IL]) Oct 2, 2008 2:58 PM
       Electric Issue (by sid [MO]) Oct 2, 2008 3:01 PM
       Electric Issue (by Bob [OH]) Oct 2, 2008 3:04 PM
       Electric Issue (by RR78 [VA]) Oct 2, 2008 6:58 PM
       Electric Issue (by Jody [MN]) Oct 2, 2008 7:29 PM
       Electric Issue (by Matt [WI]) Oct 2, 2008 7:32 PM
       Electric Issue (by RR [WA]) Oct 2, 2008 7:38 PM
       Electric Issue (by RJ [WI]) Oct 2, 2008 9:51 PM
       Electric Issue (by DaveS [IL]) Oct 2, 2008 11:48 PM

Electric Issue (by Matt [WI]) Posted on: Oct 2, 2008 12:44 PM

State Specific Question About: WISCONSIN (WI)

I have a question regarding the responsibilities of a landlord to address electrical bill problems when the meter is reading at an unnecessarily high KwH rate (over 1600 KwH) for a two bedroom apartment. If the landlord has been given ample time (over one month) to address the problem what is the responsibility of the tenant to pay the unnecessarily high and overdue bill? Thank you for your time. --137.28.xx.xx

Electric Issue (by sid [MO]) Posted on: Oct 2, 2008 1:07 PM

Hello, Mr Tenant. Yes, you need to pay your bill. BTW, what's causing the unnecessarily high charge? --204.80.xxx.xx

Electric Issue (by Andrew, [ON]) Posted on: Oct 2, 2008 1:20 PM

If the lease says you are responsible for the electricity, then you have to pay it. If you dont it will go on your credit rating and you can be evicted.

Invite the Landlord in to the apt and go thru it with him to see what is causing the problem.

Turn everything off in your apt and go and look at the meter, it should no be moving at all. But make sure you turn off EVERYTHING first.


Electric Issue (by Matt [WI]) Posted on: Oct 2, 2008 1:32 PM

Thanks for the responses. I'm aware I should pay my bill but a $400.00 electric bill for a single individual is a little out of control for a 33 day period. They have been made aware of the problem and I have turned off all breakers to stop the meter to find out what meter was mine as the landlord had the meters mislabeled. I have no idea what is causing the high bill and I think that should be the responsibility of the landlord to figure out. I just wanted to know if the landlord was legally obligated to fix the problem (which by statute I found they are). And furthermore what my responsibility of the electrical bill should be. --137.28.xx.xx

Electric Issue (by Brenda [TX]) Posted on: Oct 2, 2008 1:44 PM

You are responsible for the bill. The landlord is responsible if something needs to be fixed. You can call the electric company because they too would know what "excessive" is because they would have the usages for the previous years. --167.6.xxx.xx

Electric Issue (by Matt [WI]) Posted on: Oct 2, 2008 1:55 PM

I know I am responsible for the bill. The electric company did in fact tell me that the bill is excessive compared to past bills. My argument here is that the negligence of the landlord is directly contributing to my having to pay the overly expensive bill. --137.28.xx.xx

Electric Issue (by Dana [CA]) Posted on: Oct 2, 2008 2:53 PM

The Electric Co might have mis-read your meter, this happened to me recently and they adjusted the bill within a few days. --207.114.xxx.xx

Electric Issue (by DaveS [IL]) Posted on: Oct 2, 2008 2:58 PM

One by one did you power down everything on every circuit and then check the meter each time? If the meter is spinning with everything off then you have a legitimate complaint. Throwing the breakers isn't the way to do it...something could be tapped into your apt...turn off your stuff one thing at a time.

If the meter seems to be working properly then turn off the plasma, close the windows and turn off the AC when you go to work. --65.54.xxx.xxx

Electric Issue (by sid [MO]) Posted on: Oct 2, 2008 3:01 PM

The only reason the LL would be responsible (maybe) is if there is something defective with the electrical system in the house that is causing your bill to be so high. If the place is just very poorly insulated, sad to say, but that is your responsibility. While a smart LL would insulate to make his unit more attractive to renters (low utils) the renter is ultimately responsible for determining if the unit meets his/her efficiency criteria BEFORE signing a lease. --204.80.xxx.xx

Electric Issue (by Bob [OH]) Posted on: Oct 2, 2008 3:04 PM

About 30 years ago, when I was a poor young man I lived in an apartment building where we paid our own electric. I had the same experience and asked both the electric company and the apartment management to investigate. After paying huge electric bills all Summer one year and complaining that I thought the A/C system was at fault, my theory was proven when the A/C had to be replaced the next Spring. Bills went down to normal after that. --64.12.xxx.xxx

Electric Issue (by RR78 [VA]) Posted on: Oct 2, 2008 6:58 PM

Do what DaveS said.

Also in my state at least the electric company supplys and owns the meter. So between you and the electric company.

A lot of landlords here the old story the electric bill is to high. On my last one they run the AC with most of the windows open about 1". Almost always something the tenant is doing.

You may have to prove a problem. Not just prove your bill is to high.

It maybe worth the cost to you to get a electrician to come in and try to find a problem. Then maybe ask the landlord to reimburse if the slim chance they do find something odd. --71.246.xxx.xx

Electric Issue (by Jody [MN]) Posted on: Oct 2, 2008 7:29 PM

If you haven't been running something continuously, like the furnace fan, then ask the electric company to replace the meter now. They came out and tested mine. It was spinning quite fast even after everything was off. Bills after replacement were 1/3 to 1/2 of old monthly amounts. --96.42.xx.xx

Electric Issue (by Matt [WI]) Posted on: Oct 2, 2008 7:32 PM

Thanks for the responses. I do not own a plasma television, I do not run an air conditioner, central air, or anything else. The only electrically charged items I use are tube TV, record player, and obviously the refrigerator. So the old story regarding the electric bill being too high is true in this instance and has been confirmed by the electric company and a maintenance man that investigated the problem. I may suggest the meter being replaced. --66.188.xxx.xxx

Electric Issue (by RR [WA]) Posted on: Oct 2, 2008 7:38 PM

Check the refrigerator, the electric water heater, and the electric furnace. Any of these can get "stuck on" and run up the bill very fast if you don't catch it. You can troubleshoot all of this using a clamp-on ammeter and a device called "Kill-A-Watt". All electricity mysteries are solvable! If you don't believe your KwH meter, you can also do some testing of the load yourself to confirm/deny the readings of the KwH meter. This is probably not a bad idea for anyone reading this. How do you know that your KwH meter is accurate? Maybe it is wearing out? What is the failure mode? Do they lose accuracy? Is it in your favor or against it?

good luck! --199.3.xxx.xxx

Electric Issue (by RJ [WI]) Posted on: Oct 2, 2008 9:51 PM

Matt, can you cite the statute you are basing your opinion on when you say you lookied it up and the landlord is responcible?

Basically when you say its the landlords job to take care of the problem, you would be right but you have to tell him what the problem is, other than the electric bill is too high in your opinion. As another person mentioned, its possable that somebody is somehow stealing electric from you and the only way for you to find that out is by investigating. When or if you find something, then you would be correct is it being the landlords job to fix it.

If you just say the electric bill is too high, the landlord will just tell you to not use as much electricity. If you identify a problem or at least make a good guess on a problem, a landlord can look into that potental problem and address it. --72.69.xxx.xx

Electric Issue (by DaveS [IL]) Posted on: Oct 2, 2008 11:48 PM

How long have you lived in this apt? If this is your first bill it's possible the initial read wasn't done properly. If you've lived there for a while and then all of a sudden have this spike in the bill then that could be something to mention to the utility company...meters can go bad...nicely, professionally try to get a CSR on your side and see if they'll check or replace the meter.

Is your unit all electric? As RR says, if a major appliance goes flaky it can run up a bill very quickly. Does the refrigerator run ALL the time? What are the controls set at? Do you ever hear it shut off and come on?

I have read of instances where the electricity of one unit has been tapped into by another...usually in converted houses, older places in cities...not standard issue apartment buildings...and it would have been that way for a long time, so all bills would have been unusual.

You might be able to ask the utility to tell you the monthly consumption listed for that meter number for the last year or so...see if something just recently spiked or if it has consistently, over time, been high.

If you just moved in and the unit was vacant for a long time you may have been billed for the time period before you moved in...not likely, but possible. --65.54.xx.xxx

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