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VIC Leaking Toilet Lands a $400 Water Bill?

Discussion in 'Australian Consumer Law Forum' started by Nick JB, 12 October 2014.

  1. Nick JB

    Nick JB Member

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    Hey folks,

    My partner and I recently went to visit my family in the UK for 3 months, and we had someone staying at our apartment looking after things. On our return, we received a water bill covering the same months we were away, and the usage was through the roof; 10 x higher than an average month, coming in at over $400 for the quarter. Ouch.

    We have speculated the usage might be due to a constantly running toilet which we're now rushing to have fixed. My question is, where do we stand under Australian Consumer Law in terms of paying/not paying this huge excess usage bill for an unknown leak during our time away?

    Many thanks in advance, we really appreciate your expert advice.
     
  2. Rod

    Rod Well-Known Member

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    Water companies are not responsible for leaks on your side of the meter. Maybe ask your 'tenant' to pay, they were the ones in the place. Otherwise see it as a small price to pay to have someone look after your place while you were away. :)
     
    winston wolf likes this.
  3. Sarah J

    Sarah J Well-Known Member

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    I agree with Rod. Water leakages are not the problems of the water company. However, you may arrange a financial payment arrangement if you cannot afford the bill in one go. You can try and call the Electricity and Water Ombudsman Victoria however, I suspect they will give you the same response.
     
  4. Nick JB

    Nick JB Member

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    Thanks guys,

    The water company just sent us a letter asking us to check for leakages and to point out an unusually high reading, which I thought was good of them to do. Seems they're open to the possibility of a problem and working with us to resolve, even though the problem is not necessarily their responsibility. When there's an obvious problem, I do think the supplier should have some sort of responsibility to work with the customer on some level, which is what they seem to be doing. I also assumed that there may be some sort of fair trading policy that covered customers in this situation, that's all.
     

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