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Residents Association of Greater Lake Mathews

RAGLM Board > General Discussion > Having A Problem With A Water Bill/Changing Totals On Same Invoice Periods
10/10/2011 3:17:34 PM
Having A Problem With A Water Bill/Changing Totals On Same Invoice PeriodsPost: Cindy Ferry
Copy of e-mail sent to Western Municipal Water:

Hello, I need your help!!! There is a mix-up and I cannot make heads or tails of the billing for one of our rental properties. Somehow I've even gotten two billing statements for the SAME time period with totally different information on them. I don't even know how that happens! Shouldn't my billing statements be on record and just be able to be pulled up, printed out again and sent out to me? How do all the numbers change when you ask for a copy of a previous invoice?
Here's my problem. We started buying investment properties here on the Gavilan Plateau last year. All was well with the first purchase, as the bill was always sent direct to the physical address of that property. Then we purchased property number two, at 17124 Cajon Drive, Perris, CA. 92570. It is acct. # 0051305-003797. We had the bill for this property sent to my home address, as we were still fixing the place up and not yet ready to rent it out. Then we purchased a third piece of property up here. I had the bill for that property sent to my home address, for ease of payment. I'd sit down and pay all the bills for all the properties on the same day. I noticed I wasn't get water bills for some of the properties. Then I noticed my home account had the bill added to it for one of the other properties. I had to go down and have that changed. I told them to just go ahead and mail each bill, for each property direct to its service address and I'd just check the mailboxes for each, since they are so close to us.
In Feb. we rented out the property on Cajon, that I have given you the information for above. Water then went in her name and was turned off in our name. I got two bills from WMW for that property before we rented it out. The first bill, $113.13. It was due Feb. 21, 2011 and I paid $113.13 on Feb. 08, 2011 ... bal. due ZERO.
Then I get a bill for the next month of $51.82. It was due on March 01. I was late paying it ... busy, you know how that goes ... I called at 3:36 p.m. on Friday, March 18 to check the full amount due, so I could pay it. I was told there was a zero bal. I asked if they were sure. They were, so I marked all the info. on the invoice and filed it with the others. Then, in Feb., we rent the unit out. No more bills, because the tenant pays the water bill. I get no late notices, no more billing statements, nothing. Then in mid June the tenant bails on the lease and by mid July is out of the unit and the bill goes back into our name. The bill was to be sent to the physical address on Cajon Dr.
We never got a bill. I know we are using water, because we had to water extra every day to get the place green again, after the tenant let the new fruit trees we put in for her die, some of the rose bushes and so on. No bill. In Aug. I get a bill for $37.33. I call to be sure I have the full total due. They say it's $37.70 with a late charge and on Wed. Aug. 31 I paid the $37.70, confirmation number was 161534. The bill period on this bill is 07/19/2011 - 07/25/2011, 6 days. On this statement, it shows right at the top that the pervious bill of $51.82 (from Jan/Feb - before we ever rented the property out) had been paid and there was no past due balance on the account (for us). After paying the $37.70 this would then bring me to a zero balance as of Aug. 31.
I never got another bill. So, I call on Friday, Oct. 7, 2011 to check and see why I'm not receiving billing statements on this property. They tell me there is $220.20 due on the account and another $150.21 due from the bailed tenant. I pay the $220.20, confirmation number 164540 and ask for an invoices for those time periods from when the charges were put back into our name, showing the billing periods, so I could file them with my records.
Now things just go crazy! I get a copy of the 7/19/2011 - 07/25/2011 billing statement and it's nothing like the one I have in my hand, which was the last billing statement I'd gotten from Western, the one I paid the $37.70 on, on Aug. 31. Except, on this new/second copy it says the $51.82 charge shown on the last bill is not paid and is still in fact due (from back in Feb., that I called about and they said had a zero balance and which was shown on my Aug. statement, sent to my home as being paid in full. Then the statement goes on to show the $37.33 charge that went to $37.70 with the late fee, which was paid on Aug. 31 ... but that's okay, because the "Bill Date" was Aug. 02, so it hadn't been made by the time the bill went out.
So, now I'm looking at it and wondering why things don't match up, but hey, it should all be okay, because I've paid these charges, my invoices show this. All I need now is the billing statements from July 25 on and they should total $220.20 and all will be well. No such luck!
There is a missing time period of July 25 - Aug. 23. No known amount, graph showing use, nothing. But, let's go on from here. On the Oct. 04 billing statement e-mailed to me, it says I had $140.08 past due, to which $37.70 was paid, leaving a balance of $102.38. Now, I can only assume that the $102.38 are the charges for the missing time period - July 25 to Aug. 23. You state on the bill that my current charges are $117.82. These two totals do equal $220.20 ... which was then paid on Oct. 7.
Can someone please explain to me how the invoices got changed and first show payments made and then put the charges back on again. Because at this point, I'm just not feeling real secure in knowing whether or not we are being charged appropriately or if numbers are just being changed willy-nilly down there at the water company. And mind you, when you look at the "copy" of the 07/19/2011 - 07/25/2011 statement, it says at the top that the $51.82 is past due and yet right below that under the "current charges" it shows a credit of ... you got it ... $51.82! Now, let's look on past that point on this "Copy" of the statement. I then shows a six day usage that comes to $27.33. Well, when they then deduct the $51.82 and then add a "processing feel" of $10.00 they say the total current charges is a credit of $14.49 ... but that I somehow still then owe you $37.33. To which, does now come out to the actual total showing on my original copy of the billing statement, billing date of Aug. 2 and which has been paid.
Can someone please give me a read out of this properties water charges starting from Dec. 29, 2010, through to now? I want to see the full charges for the tenants usage as well, because I want to be SURE Western isn't trying to collect their $150.21 from us, knowing their chances of collecting from the bailed tenant is about as likely as our collecting on the past due rent. Can you please step in here and help me understand this and make heads or tails out of all this?
Cindy Ferry
Proud Member of RAGLM
Unity of Community, Supporting the Rural Way of Life

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