What do I need to do/know if I am selling, buying or renting property in Selkirk?
Submit a Moving form.
- Do not finalize the purchase until the vendor (seller) or their lawyer pays the final utility invoice.
- Your lawyer should make sure the final utility invoice is paid before you finalize the purchase.
- Remember, we may add unpaid utility charges to the current owners property taxes if they remain unpaid.
- To make sure that we only bill you for your consumption, ensure a meter reading is obtained prior to the date of possession. More on Meter Readings here.
- The property seller should do this even if they have a tenant who is responsible for the utility invoices who plans to rent from the new owner.
- In the event of an outstanding balance, a letter will be sent out (in November) to the property owner and person named on the utility account advising of the outstanding utility charges. If the utility charges are not paid in December they will be added to the property tax roll.
- Outstanding utility charges are the responsibility of the property owner and will be transferred to property taxes.
- If we do not receive information about a new tenant, we will automatically put the utility account in the name of the property owner.
- If the property owner receives a invoice for charges that should be billed to a tenant, we will adjust the invoice and bill the tenant for up to one billing cycle (i.e. 3 months).
- If we don’t receive a reading until after the sale, we pro-rate the utility invoice between the former owner and the new owner.
Why do I need to complete a Moving form?
- To set up the utility account for new owners/tenants and establish the first meter reading, to ensure you are only billed for your consumption.
- To issue a final utility invoice for utility charges for the property seller.
What if a tenant vacates my property without paying the utility invoice?
We first try to recover the money from the tenant:
- If we have a forwarding address for the tenant, we send the tenant’s final utility invoice to the forwarding address. If we do not have a forwarding address, we send the tenant’s final utility invoice to the service address on file.
- We DO NOT send notices to the tenant any time there is an outstanding balance, other than the annual letter sent out in November.
As the property owner you are responsible for all unpaid utility charges for your property.
What is the city doing to protect owners against unpaid tenant invoices?
- If the Utility Clerk becomes aware of a tenant who is receiving service at a new address while still owing for service provided at a previous address, we will forward any unpaid invoices to the former tenant’s current address.
- If a utility invoice remains overdue, a letter is sent to the owner advising that unless the account is paid by a prescribed date, the account will be transferred to the owner’s property taxes (generally sent out in November).
- The Utility Clerk will not negotiate payment extensions or alternative payment arrangements with tenants. Tenants are responsible for obtaining the owner’s consent for alternate payment arrangements.
What can owners do to protect themselves against unpaid tenant invoices?
- Ensure that our Utility Clerk is aware of all properties belonging to you where a landlord/tenant relationship exists. We will provide you with important information which may save you money.
- Ensure any arrangements you make with your tenant(s) regarding payment of their water and wastewater bill are recorded in the TENANCY AGREEMENT. You may wish to note in the Tenancy Agreement that the tenant is responsible for providing meter readings when requested to do so.
- Contact our Utility Clerk periodically to learn about the status of your tenant(s) accounts.
How do I know if I’ve received an estimated invoice?
To avoid estimated bills and ensure you only pay for the water you use, check your utility bills regularly for the meter reading type under the section labelled “Meter Reading and Usage Details this bill” found on the top right hand side or your utility bill.
What do I do if I receive an estimated invoice?
In the event that you receive an estimated invoice you are required to contact the City to arrange for a meter inspection. The City estimate’s utility accounts if a meter reading cannot be obtained at the service address during the quarterly reading process. Utility invoices will be estimated based on the utility account holders average previous consumption.
To arrange for a meter inspection please contact the Utility Clerk directly at 204-785-4903 and provide us with the following information:
- Utility account number
- Service address
- Utility Account holder name
- Contact information (phone number)
OR submit a CitizenSupport ticket (Category: Water Billing). After receiving the CitizenSupport ticket we will contact you to schedule a meter inspection.
Please note: Before any adjustments are made in relation to receiving an estimated invoice, a meter inspection will be required.