Submeter Your Community at Zero Out of Pocket Landlord Expense

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November 20, 2013
Troy Brost
Owner
Songbrook MHC

The title of this Community Update should have caught your attention. It is not a gimmick, I have done it myself. Adam Cook's MHCO Community Update article, "Can You Afford to Keep Utilities Included in Your Rent?" from last week is spot on! My answer is no, I cannot and no longer do".

Both Landlords and Tenants agree of the importance of sub-metering; it is a win-win proposition. Enduring years of Landlord/Tenant Coalition, one of the most daunting tasks was demonstrating Landlords do not have safes' locked full of money. Financing options simply did not exist to fund mandatory sub-metering. Where were Landlords to find upwards of $750+ per homesite to install water sub-meters? Of course, Landlords proved their argument and negotiated the right to unilaterally amend rental agreements to permit community-wide sub-metering; creating provisions to recapture installation expenses by billing Tenants. Considering a new program now available, I believe every Landlord should sub-meter sooner than later!

Now available is a sub-meter and installation program at zero expense to any Landlord wanting to install new or replace old sub-meter systems. No applications, no qualifications, and no money down gets you state of the art wireless monitored sub-meters (water, electric, and gas are all available). What's the catch? ... the Landlord signs a 10 year Billing Agreement with the provider, in which the Tenant pays. So, how does it work?

First, the meters are purchased/installed/administered/maintained/repaired/monitored/insured/read/etc. by an Independent 3rd party. Just as all meter reading companies, this 3rd party charges a monthly fee for their service ... it is their cost of doing business. In Eugene, this 3rd party charges nearly 1/2 less of what EWEB (Eugene Water and Electric Board) charges it's customers. Second, per ORS 90, the 3rd party bills the Tenant the cost of the sub-meter and installation over a minimum of 60 months. The sub-metering process is complicated; no worries, this 3rd party is experienced, has been in business for nearly a decade, has all the systems and sample notices in place, and handles the entire process on behalf of the Landlord.

The Bottom line: local government agencies and utility companies use Landlords to pass through their exorbitant "fees" and rate increases, in which Landlords are forced to carry until the next "rent" increase ... making the Landlord the greedy bad guy. Prior to sub-metering, utility expenses were 23% of my rent; my monthly invoices now line item sub-meter every utility possible. My rents are now very competitive within the market and I have direct control over costs. I see every reason why all Landlords should do the same.

Indeed, it sounds too good to be true ... it is. Contact me at troybrost@gmail.com, 541-554-1499, or visit www.infrasystems.us to find out for yourself. I will provide you with the contact and information you need and assist you along the way.

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