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City of Winnipeg
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Important information for landlords

Before you rent, contact us

Contact us to:

  1. Register as a landlord
    • We need your name, your mailing address, and a list of the properties you rent.
  2. Find out about the water meters and your private water service pipe for each of your rental units or buildings.
    • This will tell you if we are unable to turn the water off due to non-payment for any reason, like the property shares a shut-off valve with another property.
  3. Find out if prospective tenants have a good history of paying their utility bills. (Note: tenant authorization is required for us to share this information).
Understand your financial responsibilities

As the property owner, you will be responsible for:

  1. Ensuring annual water meter readings are provided as required by Water By-Law 107/2015. Failure to do so can lead to fines.
  2. Quarterly bill payments, unless the tenant is set up as the account holder.
  3. Unpaid water and sewer charges when a tenant moves or if you sell the property. We add these to your tax bill.
  4. Unpaid waste diversion fees.
  5. Repairing or replacing lost or damaged recycling and garbage carts.
  6. Replacing damaged water meters.

When renting, contact us

Contact us on the day your tenant:

  1. Signs a rental agreement so that we can confirm that we have all the information we need to set up the utility account (e.g., name of account holder(s), first meter reading).
  2. Moves out to confirm that we have a final reading.
    • We can then issue a final utility bill for water, sewer and waste diversion service right away.
    • We will send you a letter with the final utility bill amount if we may add unpaid water and sewer charges to your property taxes. Outstanding waste diversion fees are also your responsibility as the property owner. You can withhold the security deposit until the bill is paid.

When selling your rental property

  1. Contact us with a meter reading to make sure that we bill you only for the water and sewer used at your property until the time of the sale.
    • Do this even if your tenant is responsible for the utility bill and plans to rent from the new owner.
    • If we donít receive a reading until months after the sale, we pro-rate the bill between the former owner and the new owner. If the new owner rents to a tenant that uses lots of water, you may end up with a higher bill than you expected.
  2. Store the recycling and garbage carts in a safe place for the next resident.
    • The carts are the property of the City of Winnipeg and are assigned to each address through a serial number and an electronic tag.

When purchasing property

  1. Do not finalize the purchase until the vendor provides a meter reading and his or her lawyer pays the final utility bill.
    • Your lawyer should make sure the final actual utility bill is paid before you finalize the purchase.
    • Remember, we may add unpaid water and sewer charges to your property taxes.
  2. We recommend that you account for the condition of the recycling and garbage carts before finalizing the purchase of the property.
    • If carts are missing or need to be repaired, you will be responsible for the cost to replace or repair the cart.
    • We will not empty recycling or garbage carts until the carts have been replaced or repaired.

Billing and collection procedures

  1. If we do not receive information about a new tenant, we will automatically put the bill in your name.
    • If you receive a bill for charges that you believe should be billed to a tenant, we will adjust your bill and bill your tenant for up to one bill period (typically one quarter).
  2. We will send notices to the tenant any time there is an outstanding balance (at 40 days from the billing date and again at 60 days from the billing date).
  3. We will send you a letter any time your tenant has an outstanding balance for:
    • sewer and water charges that may be added to your property tax (at 40 days from the billing date and again at 60 days from the billing date if payment has still not been made)
    • waste diversion fees that you may be held responsible for
Situations where we may turn off water to a rental property

We may turn off the water to accounts with outstanding balances of $100 or more when we have not received payment within 70 days of the billing date, unless the tenant has contacted us to make arrangements to pay off the outstanding balance in regular instalments. Before we can agree to payment arrangements that extend past 70 days from the billing date, we must have your approval as the landlord.

Note: Water turn-offs are subject to a number of operational considerations (ex: availability of resources). If your property meets the criteria for disconnection, please call us to discuss scheduling options.

Situations where we donít turn off water to a rental property

We canít turn off the water to a rental property in the following circumstances.

  1. The utility bill is in the property ownerís name.
  2. One water meter measures water use to more than one unit.
  3. The shut-off valve controls water to more than one unit.

In these cases, we will add outstanding balances for water and sewer charges of $100 or more to the property ownerís tax bill when payment has not been received within 105 days of the billing date.

When a tenant vacates your rental unit with an outstanding amount owing

You are responsible for all unpaid utility charges for your property.

If final water and sewer charges are $100 or more and we have not received payment within 50 days of the billing date, we may add these amounts to your property taxes.

We first try to recover the money from the tenant:

  • We notify you of the tenant's final bill amount if the bill is over $100.
  • If we have a forwarding address for the tenant, we send the tenantís final utility bill to the forwarding address. If we do not have a forwarding address, we send the tenantís final utility bill to the service address on file.
  • We try to turn off the water at the tenantís new address, provided we have this information and the utility bill at the new address is in the tenantís name.

You or your tenant may be eligible for a Water Leak Credit if the tenant received a high bill as a result of a water leak within the home or building.

We encourage you to try to collect this money from your tenant. Options open to you include:

  • Manitoba Small Claims Court
  • Manitoba Residential Tenancies Branch
  • Private collection agencies
Last updated: August 1, 2017

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