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Selling Your Home with a Hot Water Tank Rental - Know Direct Energy's Policies in Advance

Direct Energy gives consumers extra month to change your water-tank policy.   How does this affect your sale?

Direct Energy recently  changing its rental water heater contracts to make it more difficult to buy a tank instead of renting, or to switch to another company.  The original date of the switch over was April 1st, however after a public outcry the deadline was extended to May 1st, 2012.

Pat Foran the investigator for CTV reported the hotline set up by Direct Energy is so jammed with callers that there is a constant busy signal. At times, the hotline even seems to crash. 

Currently, if a heater is rented from Direct Energy, it can be removed at no cost, or for a small fee. But on May 1, that will change.

Under the new agreement, if a contract is cancelled, the renter will have to pay a buy-out fee of between $200 and $3,000, depending on the size and year of the tank.

Who will be affected by Direct Energy's Policy Change?    The change will affect approximately 600,000 customers, homeowners with water heaters older than seven to eight years. 
If a heater is newer, it will not be affected. If customers signed up with Direct Energy after September, 2010, they're already in the new contract.

"We've changed our cancellation options. So if customers want to end their rental agreement they will pay a buy-out fee at which time they will own the equipment. Returning the used equipment to us is no longer an option," said Len Diplock at Direct Energy.

The company says most people who continue to rent from them will not see any additional charges. However, if a customer wants to stay with their old agreement they must contact Direct Energy. If they don't call or email, they will automatically be signed up with the new contract.
Important Tip when Selling Your Toronto Area Home:
If your are Selling Your Home, consider the possibility a potential Buyer may not wish to keep your existing rental and you could be faced with a large buy-out.   Ensure you contact Direct Energy in advance to discuss your options and advise your realtor so appropriate clauses to cover this topic are added to your Agreement of Purchase and Sale.   
If a Buyer agrees to assume your rental, ensure you spell out the monthly fee and terms so they are aware of what they are assuming.   If as a Seller, you agree to the pay-out, get the exact amount from Direct Energy in writing so there are no last minute surprises on closing.
Toronto Home Buyers ask your realtor upfront if the home you are considering buying has a hot water and verify the status if owned or rented.    Spell the status of the hot water tank in the offer so there is no confusion on closing.  

To reach Direct Energy about the new contracts, call 1-866-202-1120, or email rentalterms@directenergy.com

Do you have a real estate question?    Ask your local Realtor in Toronto 416-896-3333, Mississauga 905-896-3333

Our non-selling Managers would be happy to answer your questions.

Visit us on-line at www.SuttonRealty.com and www.SearchTorontoHomes.com

Posted: Wednesday, March 14, 2012 9:36 PM by Sutton Realty


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