The landlord is ordinarily responsible for the payment of rates. Municipal utility bills, i.e. water, sanitation, and electricity/gas, are usually paid by the tenant. This saves the landlord the hassle of paying the invoices and allocating payments from the bill to the tenant.
However, if the tenant does not pay the municipality on time, and the landlord has no access to the municipal bills, the property owner can be in arrears and not realise it. The fact that the bills are sent to the tenant does not eliminate the landlord’s liability to pay the utilities.
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