Submetering water in TX question


#1

I am looking at a couple of parks in Texas where there are in-line meters but the owners are not charging for water. A master meter (city water) is attached to the service entry and a bill goes to the current owner each month. The broker tells me it is illegal to bill the water/sewer back to the residents!!! Is this true? If I buy the place, I plan to read the meters monthly and then have Edison do the actual billing statements.

I have a hard time believing this broker is correct. Has anyone else experienced this or is it OK to submeter and bill-back water/sewer costs to residents in Texas?

Thanks.

Rolf


#2

We just sold our small park east of Houston and are building a brand new one in the same area. We are installing meters on every lot. All I know is, our real estate broker told us that submetering was legal. We had previously visited our water district office concerning a high bill for our park and they suggested submetering. They even directed us to a member of the water board that lived down the street and who owned a mobile home park, so we could see how he submetered.

I’ve only heard it was illegal to bill back to tenants more of the actual amount due to the water district. So if they used 12 dollars worth of water, you can’t bill them 20. I’m no lawyer, but I’ve had several encounters here in Texas that lead me to believe that submetering is just fine.


#3

I worked as a park manager in Washington state and the park installed individual meters. There was a formula that was provided by the water district. You’re not allowed to profit off public utilities in our state. They were charged only for their usage. I will tell you that it took us several days to read meters in a 200 space park. So keep that in mind.

Mimi