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New duty on landlords to inform Welsh Water about tenants

Landlords in Wales and England whose rental properties receive their water and sewage services from Welsh Water will need to provide information about their tenants to the company under new regulations introduced by the Welsh Government.

These changes, which impact on landlords, letting agent or Local Authorities, came into effect on 1 January 2015 and require landlords to inform Welsh Water about tenants in their properties within 21 days of the tenants moving into the property. If this is not done, the landlord can become jointly and severally liable with the tenant for any outstanding water and sewerage charges.

Landlords will need to supply details to Welsh Water, which will include the property address, tenancy start date and title, name and date of birth of all adult residents. This can be done online.

Alternatively, landlords can also register these details on a dedicated website www.landlordtap.co.uk. This is a web portal developed by the water industry. It allows landlords to submit all of their tenancy changes via one system without them needing to notify different water companies about various tenancy changes or without landlords needing to know which water company to contact. The portal has been designed to issue notifications to the relevant water company for action and it will provide the landlord with a confirmation receipt for each notification as proof that they have made the notification within the required timescale.

Welsh Water’s Managing Director of Customer Services, Julia Cherrett said: “We are currently working to ensure landlords are aware of this new duty. We want to make the process as easy as possible for new landlords. Due to the short notice of the new legislation, landlords are being given three month ‘grace period’ by Welsh Water to help them prepare for the legislation and share the necessary details. This means that we will not take any action to enforce the regulations until 31 March 2015.”