The disadvantages of including bills when renting out an apartment include having no control over renters' use of facilities for which the landlord is paying, states The Educated Landlord. In addition, if bills are added to the cost of the rent, the higher rental price may discourage potential renters.
The Educated Landlord admits that it is easier for landlords to pay all the utilities on their own properties. However, when landlords are responsible for utility bills, tenants may be unaware of their energy costs. Habits like leaving lights and electronics on may persist, driving up the bills of which the tenants are unaware, notes The Educated Landlord. The added utility costs cut into the landlord's overall cash flow, and the landlord has little power to alter the tenants' habits. In turn, the landlord may have to raise the rental price to cover increasing energy costs, notes Realtor.com, which can damage relations with a tenant.
An advantage of including bills in the rent is that the landlord is not liable if a renter fails to pay the bills, as The Educated Landlord explains. Landlords are spared potential disputes between tenants over the different energy expenditures. Furthermore, some renters may be attracted to an advertisement that notes that utilities are included, notes About.com.