|Senate Counsel & Research||State of Minnesota|
|S.F. No. 1217 - Landlord And Tenant-Utility Charges|
|Author:||Senator David H. Senjem|
|Prepared by:||John C. Fuller, Senate Counsel (651/296-3914)|
|Date:||March 30, 2006|
Minnesota Statutes, section 504B.215, regulates a landlord's ability to charge for utility services that are provided through a single meter serving an entire apartment. The law does not apply if a tenant has an individual meter for the premises rented. This bill clarifies some issues that have arisen under the law.
Section 1 amends the definition of a "single-metered residential building" to exclude from the definition the situation where an individual apartment has a meter that not only serves the individual unit, but also serves part of the common area. For this situation to be excluded, it must be disclosed in writing to a tenant.
Section 2 deals with the narrow situation where a tenant does have a single meter that also includes some common area service charges and the tenant was not informed of the common area charges on that meter. The section attempts to limit the tenant's liability for the common area charge to a prorated proportion of the common area service charge.
Section 3 amends the law that places conditions on bills to tenants in a single-metered residential building. Billing service fees and account activation fees must be equitably apportioned. A landlord is prohibited from collecting from tenants for utility service more than the aggregate charges imposed by the utility. Billing service fees, account activation fees, and late payment fees by or for a landlord are limited and regulated.
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