Greg Elgin says he and his wife spent the three months of the summer at their campsite and only went home to their mobile home on Sunday's to mow the lawn and do a couple loads of laundry, yet his water bill went up almost $20 a month. "I just don't get how my bill jumped from $62 to $77 in a month when I'm not even here. While Elgin's bill went up in the $20 dollar range, his neighbor who lives down the way had quite a larger jump. He didn't want 13ABC to use his identity, but he did show us his monthly water statements that showed his average monthly water bill was between $30 and $45 dollars a month. However one month he received a bill for over $300 dollars. He tells the I-Team that when he questioned the bill, management just offered to let him spread the payments out. This was all despite his water usage changing or ruling out any leaks.
In Lucas County, most mobile home parks have meters that are read for the entire parks water usage, then the individual tenants are billed for their use as it's read on their mobile home water meters. The I-Team found in a few different mobile homes with different owners and management, there can often be great differences in the amount residents are charged. Carolina Longoria lives in a mobile home park on Toledo's East side and her water bill went from 35 one month to over $300 dollars for another this past winter. She tells the I-Team that she had no choice but to pay it or face eviction. The park management told her it must be a leak at her mobile home, yet the bill went right back down despite no repairs to her water lines.
The Ohio Department of Commerce is responsible for regulating mobile home parks, but other than that the I-Team found no other local agency that residents can take their case to if they have a dispute. The I-Team is continuing to look into this and will continue to pass along information as we get it. 13ABC did talk to the owner of the mobile home park where the man's bill went from $30 to $300, and they tell us they are willing to revisit the mans bill to see if there are any discrepancies.