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utility deposit

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utility deposit

Postby pizzalover » Wed Feb 01, 2006 12:34 pm

I am a Kansas landlord. The local city provides all utilities to my properties. They require a $400.00 deposit from a tenant and a $100.00 deposit from a homeowner. I believe this is discrimantory and violates equal property rights. Can anyone on this site point me in the direction of information to support this. Maybe a court case. I have heard some supreme court cases exist that address this--I do not know what state or possibly federal. I have been unsuccessful in locating anything helpful. I am hoping this tenant site may be of some help.
pizzalover
 
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Re: utility deposit

Postby Anna » Wed Feb 01, 2006 7:00 pm

Any leads here?: http://tenant.net/Other_Areas/Kansas/index.html

Did you call a local politician? or community group?
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Re: utility deposit

Postby Aubergine » Wed Feb 01, 2006 11:03 pm

While the different deposit requirements may seem unfair at first glance, there may be a rational basis -- homeowners by definition have property that the city can subject to a lien, while tenants can more easily leave behind unpaid debts with no easily traced assets.

Does the city at least pay interest on the deposits?
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Re: utility deposit

Postby pizzalover » Thu Feb 02, 2006 10:33 am

I realize what the city's rational is regarding a homeowner has property subject to a lien and a tenant probably does not. However, I still do not believe it is right. When a city sells utilities they sell them at a profit, just as any other business. They should employ collection activities just as any other efficiently ran business would. Currently, they make the landlord pay the unpaid debt of a tenant. They believe the tenant's unpaid utility debt to be a landlord's cost of doing business. I disagee. If a city wishes to be in business for a profit, they need to stop wining and play by the same rules as any other business. If they can charge a landlord for a tenant's unpaid utility bill, why not charge Ford or GM for the unpaid traffic fine of the person who leases a vehicle. Charging a tenant a higher deposit simply because they are a tenant essentially creates a "sub-class" of people. What would be wrong with basing everyone's deposit on their credit history? At least this would treat people equally. Bottom line--I understand where they are coming from--but I disagree and I believe it violates equal rights. I think there is a better solution.

Yes, I have contacted politicians. Still working that avenue. And the site link you provided did include a resource I had been unable to locate. Maybe it will be helpful. Thank you.
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