Who Pays for Water in a Rental?

Who Pays for Water?

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You’ve just received the Council water rates and your jaw dropped!

Have the tenants been singing in the shower? Or is there a possible water leak?

It is reassuring to know that you are able to bill your tenants accordingly for their water usage, if you fit the following criteria.


Landlords are able to pass on the full water consumption charges if the rental property is-

    • Individually metered and
    • Water efficient
    • The tenancy agreement states the tenant must pay for water consumption (on page 2 of the RTA General Tenancy Agreement FORM 18A Item 12.2)

We make it a part of all of our general tenancy agreements that you can make the property water compliant during the tenancy.
Average cost of a Water Compliance Certificate is $120 (not including upgrades if required. These can be quoted on).

For further information click on the following link from the Rental Tenancies Authority on water charging-


When the landlord receives their water rates which are generally issued twice a year (April and October) you can either

– choose to pay the rates yourself and send the 2 pages (rate notice and water advice) to your property manager. The property manager will then invoice the tenant accordingly.


-contact your property manager to pay the rates from the rental account.

From the date of the notice of the water rates, you as a property owner have 31 days to pay. Ensure you allow enough time to pay the water rates so the 10% discount can be applied (which the TRC provide if paid before or by the due date).

If organising the Property Manager to pay, send these 2 pages of water rates straight through to Property Manager. It is important to remember that when tenants are invoiced, they have 30 days within which to pay the invoice, so it is extremely important for the property manager to receive the Water Rates notice as soon as possible.

The reason the property manager requires a copy of the second page of the water rates-‘the water advice’ is because this document is provided to the tenant with their invoice as evidence of the water consumption and cost. This is a requirement.

Tenants have one month to pay the agreed billable amount. It is important to note the tenants CAN NOT be charged late fees if the water rates were not paid by the due date.

Water billing periods do not always align with the tenancy agreement dates. For that reason, water meter reads are completed at the start of a tenancy and written on the Entry Condition Report and the vacate on the Exit condition report (which both parties check and sign to acknowledge).

Generally, the Toowoomba Regional Council issue water rates to owners 6 months behind the actual issue date. For example, owners are currently starting to receive water rates. One rate notice was issued the 6 May but the water meter reading was from April of last year to October 2021. For that reason, a tenant may receive an invoice for 12 months of water at the end of their lease.


If you want to understand the breakdown of your water rate notice, you can click on the following Council link as an example – 


If you are currently getting your water rates and Rates mailed to you, you can request to have them emailed to you for speedier access. This can be done online through the following link- 


If you have organised for us to pay your water rates, you can alternately place [email protected] as the email address to receive the bill and then speed the process up further! 


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