You own a rental property and out of the blue, your water bill skyrockets. What does this mean? It's time to sit down and prepare an excessive water usage notice to a tenant.
You're definitely not alone in this. Every landlord dreads that spike in utility bill costs because it often spells trouble, from leaks to just plain waste.
In this article, we'll walk you through the signs of excessive water usage and how to craft an excessive water usage notice to a tenant.
Signs of Excessive Water Usage
Now, you may have included water consumption sample clauses in your tenant's contract, but when the water bill shows the amount of water usage has climbed, it's time to take notice. Spotting excessive water use isn't just about numbers on paper. Sometimes it's as subtle as that sneaky drip-drip sound from a faucet at midnight.
Unusual Increases in Water Bills
An eye-popping increase in your property’s water bill can be more jarring than an ice-cold splash of reality. But don’t let sticker shock drown you in confusion.
Instead, compare current bills with past months or even with other similar properties. Then, if you're seeing numbers that are going high without explanation, this could indicate excessive water usage.
Hints of Constant Water Flow
You can also look for signs of a constant water flow. This can come from a toilet that runs often, dripping faucets, or long steamy showers taken every single night. If you recognize these hints, you can act on them early and save both gallons of water and dollars.
Oversaturated Grounds Signal Overuse
For example, if tenants have taken up gardening and suddenly your complex has enough veggies to start its own farmers market, this might be another signal of excessive water consumption.
According to EPA estimates, outdoor watering accounts for nearly 30% of total household use. This fact shouldn't be overlooked because over-irrigation is no small drop in the bucket when considering overall consumption and costs.
Changing excessive water habits isn't just good housekeeping. It's also an important step for our blue planet since every single saved gallon contributes to reducing the overall excessive water usage.
3 Ways in Which Excessive Water Usage Impacts Property Owners
Now that you know the signs of excessive water usage, it's time you become aware of the impact it has on property managers. It's not only about dollars and cents, as excessive water use can ripple out and cause a flood of issues ranging from structural damage to strained community resources.
1. Financial Implications
Let’s talk money first because let's face it, nobody enjoys watching cash go down the drain when it's time to pay the bills. When your tenant has their faucet running like fountains, you're looking at more than just an inflated utility bill.
The EPA states that household leaks can waste nearly 1 trillion gallons annually nationwide, which is enough to supply over 11 million homes. For property owners, unchecked leaks or reckless water consumption translates into throwing away potential savings and decreased net operating income.
In addition to direct costs are hidden expenses such as increased wear-and-tear on plumbing systems leading to premature repairs or replacements. Plus, there could be higher sewer charges tied in with greater wastewater output, which is another unwelcome surprise for your budget.
2. Potential Property Damage
Damp walls whisper tales of trouble beyond what meets the eye. Excessive moisture doesn't play nicely with building materials. Wood swells, paint peels off its loyalty coat by coat, and metal rusts in protest.
Unchecked high humidity levels inside properties due to constant running water can lead to mold growth, which brings health concerns into play alongside cosmetic blemishes and structural integrity questions.
A leak left unattended might seem small, but give it time and it'll become a foundation crack inviting soil erosion plus possible flooding scenarios during heavy rains. Property managers know this would be a real estate nightmare.
3. Environmental Concerns
Surely there’s no need for every tenant shower session to last too long. While individual excess may seem insignificant when spread across many units, this becomes environmentally unsustainable behavior fast.
It can affect local ecosystems including plant life reliant on regional aquifers facing depletion challenges thanks partly to residential misuse.
We live in times where green practices and water conservation aren’t just trendy, they’re necessary steps toward safeguarding our planet's future against climate change impacts felt around global communities daily. Hence, using water efficiently within multi-family complexes isn't merely good stewardship.
It’s important to ensure that we all have a sustainable environment to call home. By embracing eco-friendly habits and technologies, these residential spaces can significantly reduce their carbon footprint while fostering a culture of conservation among residents.
Tips for Giving an Excessive Water Usage Notice to Tenants
Once you've figured out the signs of excessive water usage and realized why the water bill is so high, it's time to tap into your role as a landlord and agree on how to conserve water. An excessive water usage notice to tenants can be like planting a seed that grows into sustainable habits, so let’s make sure you get this right.
1. Setting the Tone
Your first goal is to strike the perfect balance between formal and friendly. Remember, you’re not writing a court summons, you're nudging tenants toward better practices for the common good.
Think of it as crafting a firm handshake in letter form, one that says "I mean business" but also "We’re on the same team." Be clear about what you've observed without coming off as accusatory.
Sometimes, people simply aren’t aware they’ve been hosting pool parties for their lawn or giving their pipes an unnecessary workout. By pointing out these slip-ups with understanding rather than blame, you'll keep doors open for positive change.
2. The Facts
It's important to gather your facts. The concrete stuff that shows water costs have gone overboard. Make sure to lay them out neatly like clothes ready for laundry day. If water bills have surged faster than usual, explain to them this was the reason behind your doubts regarding the excess water usage.
Use data smartly by comparing current figures with past averages. It's easier to grasp changes when there are benchmarks involved (EPA WaterSense statistics support this approach). If specific behaviors have caused spikes in consumption, mention those too, but wrap them in caution tape instead of barbed wire.
3. Action Steps
A well written excessive water usage notice to tenants doesn't just highlight problems. In order to save water, tenants should also know the solutions that could help reduce water usage.
Include easy-to-follow steps tailored toward correcting excess usage, such as checking faucets for leaks or adopting xeriscaping principles if outdoor watering is soaking up resources.
Lay down deadlines gently yet firmly to encourage timely responses from tenants without dropping anvils on their heads. Let them know assistance is at hand should they need help navigating these waters. You can also agree to hire plumbing inspections and let the professionals check for leaky toilets.
How to Never Have to Deal with Excessive Water Usage Again
DrizzleX allows you to detect hidden leaks, such as running toilets and leaky faucets, to stop millions of gallons of waste each year. It also alerts you to excessive water overuse by tenants. Typically, buildings that use DrizzleX reduce their water bills by 25-45% or more. And you can expect a pretty quick return on investment (ROI). Buildings with DrizzleX save enough water to cover the entire cost of DrizzleX within about 9 months on average.
One of Drizzlex's solutions is usage alerts. Since many people aren't really aware of their excessive water usage, the alerts can be very helpful. With this system, you can communicate with your tenants about their water consumption habits, and back it up with precise data too.
Leaks can be sneaky because they aren't always visible. With property inspection, you can see the obvious ones. But, silent leaks will only show up on your utility bills. DrizzleX gives you water control because you can monitor the water flow in your building.
The system will notify you about where and how much water is being lost.
Once DrizzleX spots the leak, it will notify you via email. The message you receive will include all the details about the exact apartment and fixture that is the culprit, how many gallons were used, how much it will cost you if the problem isn’t fixed, and even possible causes for the water waste and how to fix it.
DrizzleX also allows you to bill your tenants. Tenants conserve water when they are the ones paying for it. You can easily create water bills based on accurate water consumption and bill them fairly.
FAQs In Relation to Excessive Water Usage Notices' to Tenants
What is the main cause of high water usage?
Most excessive water usage comes from hidden leakages, home appliances such as toilets, showers and faucets, pools, and gardening. A running toilet can use more than 4,000 gallons in one day! If it isn’t fixed, one running toilet can add over $2,000 per month to your water bill.
How much water does one tenant use?
While the numbers can vary, average use in the United States is about 80-100 gallons of water per person per day. But with water conservation devices such as DrizzleX, that amount can be reduced to 30-40 gallons per day.
Do tenants pay water bills?
Although landlords can sometimes charge tenants, in general, water is included in a tenant’s rent, which means that the landlord pays for the water bill. The same is true for the sewer bill too.
Why is it important to use water efficiently?
Water is a natural resource. Using water efficiently ensures supplies stay at safe levels, which contributes to the overall environment.
How can I use less water in my apartment?
Reporting leaks, doing regular water meter testing, and using your home appliances properly can help you use less water. For example, try to take showers in 5-10 minutes.