How do i nicely collect bill money?

MaryL472April 13, 2004

I live in a 3 bedroom apt with 3 other girls and i'm the one in charge of our bills (getting them sent out in time and collecting money). I use to put sticky notes on their doors saying how much they owe for what bill, who to write a check to, and when their money is due. I thought it was a great system but one girl hates it (she wont tell me she just lets everyone else know). Thats fine but i feel that if you dont like the system you should have a suggestion of how to change it... but she's just taking her random dislike for me out on my system and since she refuses to bother with the notes she never pays on time and i HATE asking her for money. Once i left her a note on my way out of town for the weekend letting her know she was late paying her bills again this month and she freaked out. How can i collect money from her? We need it on time b/c often the person's name the bill is under doesnt always have the money to back it when the check gets cashed. HELP ME! I need ideas!!!

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
talley_sue_nyc

some people view notes poorly. They feel that writing a note is what you do when you don't want to talk to someone--you're embarrassed, or there's a conflict, or it's a distasteful subject, or something like that.

I think you need a group meeting. If the bill is under other people's names besides yours, they're getting stiffed too.

Tell everyone you want out from under this responsibility, and you want the entire group to figure out how to deal w/ this, both what method to use to notify people and what should be done when someone is late.

If other people are incurring bounced-check fees because she's late, they need to bring evidence of that and demonstrate it to her, so she realizes that other people are paying a definite cost, not just being mildly annoyed.

Have everyone bring records of the last several bills for your place--electric, phone, rent, etc. Then figure out how much is going out, who's paying it, etc.

My roomie and I split the bills by each of us taking one. she paid gas and the basic phone; I paid electric, because for us at that time, those added up to roughly the same amount of $. Then I paid her just for my long-distance.

In another apt, I was the lease-holder, and my roomie paid me a higher-than-half rent, but no utilities. I increased her rent by half the usual amount of the utilities. So she only had to write one check.

Your team should find some way to handle this that works for them. Perhaps, if she's the one who doesn't pay others, she should have the responsibility of paying one bill all by herself (unless you think she won't pay it and the electricity will be cut off).

Another way is to have each person who's in charge of a bill ask for their own money, and not you.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2004 at 12:09PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
lazy_gardens

Another method ... you now have several months worth of history and should know how much each bill will be.

EVERYONE pays into a SINGLE account, from which all bills are paid ... and they pay their share of ALL the bills BEFORE the month starts. Minor adjustments can be made each month, but you should start the month with the cash to pay the bills.

For example ... you know the total for all the bills is going to be Rent + phone + gas + light+ cable .... add it all up and divide by the number of people living in the place. That's what they owe the "kitty" every month. They write ONE check, it goes into the kitty and that's that.

If someone move sout ... they get their share of the kitty back, and the new roomie has to cough up before moving in.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2004 at 4:22PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
joann23456

You need a house meeting to discuss all this. Explain the problem and ask for help in establishing a system. Everyone needs to make it clear that bills have to be paid promptly.

If she continues to ignore bills and be late paying them, I see no recourse other than to ask her to leave. It's hard if she doesn't agree to go, though, as you aren't her landlord and can't evict her.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2004 at 3:53AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
scarlett2001

"There's always one"... I would get peer pressure going. She's not only stiffing you, she's stiffing the rest of the "team" as well. And why worry about being "nice"?? This is business and real life, not a tea party. She's being immature and irresponsible. If you get stuck with a late fee because of her, will the utilties or landlord be "nice" to you?
Speakng from experience, this type of person just gets worse and worse. I would tell the whole group that unless bills are paid "in a timely manner" the offender should pack her bags and look for a new place to stay. (Like maybe back home with mommy and daddy.)

    Bookmark   April 19, 2004 at 7:03PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
MaryL472

Thanks everyone for your ideas ... I will be attempting a house meeting, to see if anyone (especially u know who) gives me some ideas on a better way to collect money on time.
Special thanks to Scarlett2001--- THAT IS HOW I FEEL! she just wont work with me and it seems to get worse! I am trying to get the others to help me out (even made one take over 2 bills to collect, just so she'd see my problem). I want to send her packing... not sure if everyone else will go with it if i bring it up. But you said what i really wanted to hear.. thanks

Love this forum
Allison
(yeah the user name says mary but thats my mom)

    Bookmark   April 19, 2004 at 8:55PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
scarlett2001

Allison,
Let us know how it goes. Financial reality is the ultimate reality.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2004 at 12:16PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Karissa

I think the reason that she resents the notes is not because she hates post its ... but because she doesn't have the money. It isn't your system. Its one of those hate the messenger because of the message deals.

Its difficult to get all roommates to get along. As someone said .... there's always one!

    Bookmark   April 22, 2004 at 7:00AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
srasgon

Won't pay up? Kick her ass out, and find someone who will.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2004 at 8:51AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
brianl703

There are some people who will walk all over you if you are nice to them.

Some people lack a basic sense of right and wrong or lack concern for anyone but #1, and these sorts of people have to be dealt with accordingly.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2004 at 10:07AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
MaryL472

Unfortunately the other two people I live with are this girl's doormats. So kicking her out isnt that easy.. I can tell her I want her to leave but i'm sure without backing from the rest of the roomates she wouldn't.
We haven't had a chance for a house meeting yet ... conflicting schedules plus she has left town till the 2nd of May to visit family. But don't worry I'll keep you posted.
~Allison ;-)

    Bookmark   April 22, 2004 at 1:30PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
lazy_gardens

While she is gone, have one-on-one meetings with the other two people. Yes, PLOT AGAINST HER, and meet her in May with a done deal between you and the oither two, with a unified front and clear plan of how she will assume responsibility for her share of the load.

Figure out how much hassle she is causing them, and how much money she owes them ... maybe they are afraid if she leaves they will lose whatevre she owes them. If they fear this, point out that if she stays, she'll continuue to be a deadbeat and they will lose more.

And next time you do a house share, do a written, signed contract ... that way you can take the deadbeat to court. Whose name is on the lease?

    Bookmark   April 23, 2004 at 8:02AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chinacat_sunflower

there is no good solution- but quitting is one option- if the bills are in your name, tell EVERYONE that, since they're not getting paid, you're closing the accounts.

let them scream. then ask them why they didn't care before.

in the meantime- start looking for a smaller place, preferably one with older roomates.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2004 at 10:31AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
MaryL472

UPDATE:
So the bills are in my name & my other roomates name ... We came up with this idea to collect all the bill money at once (like suggested)at a house meeting once a month. Except rent everyone pays themself at the first of the month. Sooooo i set up the meeting and even ask the problem roomate if that date and time is ok for her. She says yes. I told everyone to bring their checkbooks b/c we were paying the bills at this one time so none are late and we never have to worry if there is enough money in the other girls account to back the full check. .... meeting time -- Roomate #1 actually paid me an hour before the meeting b/c she had a date, Roomate #2 shows up on time and pays, Problem Roomate shows up with Roomate #2 and when I tell her what she owes she asks if she can pay tomorrow b/c i need her to write out 2 check and she only has 4 left and blah blah blah about some car payment. Roomate #2 and i exchange rolled eye looks and Problem Roomate swears she'll pay tomorrow.
Frustrated b/c the whole point of this meeting was to get her to pay!!!!!!!!! We'll see if she even remembers to pay up today like she promised she would. well i mean i'm gonna remind her BUT lets see if she actually pays.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2004 at 10:21AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
kgsd

Tell her to write a check for the bills amount PLUS her car payment to you, and you'll give her a check for the car payment amount (you can even make it payable directly to the loan company).

    Bookmark   May 13, 2004 at 11:07AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
talley_sue_nyc

make her put the bills in HER name.Tell her she can pay cash, and you'll write out a receipt.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2004 at 1:45PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
skatiero

So what happened so far with deadbeat roomie? Post and let us all know!!!!

    Bookmark   July 1, 2004 at 12:07AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
MaryL472

LET THE COUNT DOWN BEGIN ... 30 DAYS LEFT till she moves out.
She's still a huge pain in the a$$ and no matter how i try to get money from her its still a challenge/fight. And I've tried creative and new ways. She lives in this whole other world I swear. And of course without the support of my other roomates, getting her to move out was a challenge... basically I did everything to annoy her & piss her off (not that she didn't return the favor) but she's finally decided to move out. Unfortuneatly she can't move into her new place till Aug. 6th but she says she is moving out at the end of july (and i'm betting it will be July 31st) to her new roomates ( I assume so she wont have to pay Aug. rent... and fine! as long as you're completely moved out). So i have a month left with her... though i still have to collect money this month and next for utilities. But i'll try to focus on her being GONE. Sad thing is it took forever to get this far and she makes being home at the same time she is terribly frustrating & stressful. Lack of roomate support didn't help.

    Bookmark   July 1, 2004 at 11:34AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
MaryL472

Could this month go by any slower?!?!?!?

    Bookmark   July 13, 2004 at 11:04AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
weed30

Does she have a deposit on your place? I doubt you will see any more money from her, only more excuses. Keep the deposit, if she paid one, and hope she makes up the difference.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2004 at 11:27AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
skatiero

I agree with Weed! And good luck getting her to move out.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2004 at 8:24PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
MaryL472

Oh she's moving out. She signed a lease already at another apt complex. Unfortunately they said she can't move in till Aug. 6th.... she claims she's moving out July 31 to her friends (new roomate too) so she won't have to pay Aug. rent but that i doubt will happen. And i'm sure we wont be able to collect any money after july from her. But I just want her out soo i'm not going to stress if she doesnt pay up in aug. She does have a deposit down but our office told her she cant have it back b/c there are 3 names on the lease and only she is moving out right now.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2004 at 11:09AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
MaryL472

Two things:
(1)Went down to the office today to sign a paper letting her out of the lease early. Made sure they weren't giving her any of her deposit back before I signed.
(2) Yeah that whole thing about her moving out July 31st instead of Aug 6th... not happening. She asked my other roommates if it was okay it she stayed another week (for free) till her new lease starts.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2004 at 11:58AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
sunrochy

Did the other roommates say it was ok? It is not time to be nice anymore. I would tell her it is time for her to be out instead of taking advantage of y'all. I had a problem roommate once, I told her she had to find another place by end of Dec after 1 semester with her. She kept saying that she cannot find another place -I knew other friends knew about her and didn't want to go through it again with her. I told her sorry, I had another person moving in at that time.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2004 at 1:17PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
wellim

I see I'm late to the party here. Interesting thread. Imagine what being a landlord or a co-op/condo treasurer can be like (I've been both). Yup, that roomie of yours is toxic. I know how darn near impossible it is to get the other roomies to grow some backbone and support you. Even if they agree with you, they are more than happy to let you be the bad guy, so they can maintain their "friendship" with the problem person. So, all too often, the bullies and the snakes can slide by and take advantage. Your willingness to confront the problem shows you are a strong person. Hang tough and give no quarter to that slimebucket roomie. She just aims to take advantage and screw all of you. she deserves no sympathy.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2004 at 6:11PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
lazypup

You are really confronted with a sticky legal situation. If the other members of your household are listed on the lease, they are legally responsible for their fare share, however, if you rented the apartment, then allowed others to stay on a share basis you have legally "sublet" the apartment which is probably a violation of your lease and could result in your eviction as well.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2004 at 3:48PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
MaryL472

TODAY IS MOVING OUT DAY FOR ROOMATE FROM HELL!!!!!!!!!!!! And as an added bonus I was awoken today by a huge crash.... she managed to knock her TV off some tall stand she had in her bedroom and the front split from the back! Man she was swearing like a sailor! Sure its mean of me to be happy about something like that, but i feel like its Karma just giving her a tiny kick in the ass! Oh today is such a good day! Less stress, more smiles!

    Bookmark   August 6, 2004 at 10:45AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
sunrochy

Is she actually out now? I am just wondering since I know it was a mess for you and you don't need it anymore.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2004 at 1:15PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
MaryL472

Officially gone 8/7 about noonish. I was not around for it. But she took our shower curtain liner.... weird.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2004 at 10:54AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
sunrochy

Good, although weird about the liner. Oh well at least she is out.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2004 at 5:45PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
scarlett2001

So now get your locks changed..seriously.

    Bookmark   September 7, 2004 at 5:23PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Ivnivnivn

If you were a guy, you wouldn't have this problem.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2004 at 5:56PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Carole39

HAH! What's being a guy have to do with it? My sons' last yr in college, his roommate decided to fall in 'love' and split to go live with his new squeeze 5mos before the [9mo] lease was done. Up until that time he was always financial responsible. (They had shared during sophmore yr.) Guess who had to come up with his 300. share??????>>> Me!

    Bookmark   October 19, 2004 at 5:35PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
MaryL472

Well I just had to share this b/c i was shocked (and yet really shouldn't be....I mean i always complained I lived with slobs, but who knew it would co$t me)

Since the end of Sept. my roomates and I have split up and moved to different communities... this morning I received a letter from our old apt. community letting us know we owe $410!!!!!!! EEEEEEEEEEEEEGADS! There were some minor charges then a $920 charge for replacing/repairing carpet (they took $460 off b/c of depreciation). Stupid parties they had with friends who spilt wine & bloody marys .. then they never clean up till much later.. or i'd just attempt to oxyclean the stains after a few days went by b/c you could never expect my roommates to follow through on anything. oy... an experience i'm glad is over.

Just an update/ vent. thank you.

    Bookmark   October 27, 2004 at 11:17AM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Feeling Harassed by Downstairs Neighbors
My boyfriend and I moved into an older apartment complex...
storybrook
Lawn Mowers/Leaf Blowers
I rent the top floor of a two-family home in a nice...
lynwell42
Share your condo townhouse noise experiences...
I would like to know from those of you who have lived...
Mia_
Noise disputes: can managers forbid tenants from conversing?
I'm having random noise problems with a downstairs...
Jck507
Noisy neighbor - am I being oversensitive?
Live in a townhouse next to people with two small kids...
hblotus95
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™