Electric MeterA few weeks ago I get a letter in the mail from the building I lease from. The letter says that since I began leasing the office (four years ago) I have not been billed for the electric I use.

They said they discovered this error while doing an audit of their electricity bill.

I then got my first bill for $436.13 for the month of February.

I had two issues with this.

(1) $436.13 seemed way too high. I asked my neighboring office, who has a bigger space and large copy machines, and they pay about $300 per month.

(2) Paying $436 for the past 48 months adds up to $20,928. I had no idea I was suppose to pay for electric and now to be hit with it, wow!

To resolve issue number one, I called them and told them it seems to high. I showed them my neighbor's bill and we discovered that the difference was in the "demand" fee. So they decided to take the bill back and find out what the issue is.

I got a letter today that there were two reasons the bill was so high.

(1) The demand fee was set to a higher point then we needed because when the meter first went live, the surge from that initial launch, went up to a high point. They then billed me based on a demand requirement that I did not need. So they fixed that.

(2) I was on a "commercial rate" as opposed to a "small user rate."

My new bill for the same time period is now $275.80, so the difference is a savings of 190.33 per month. Of course, each month will differ. But saving about $200 a month is nice.

Now, I need to pay for the four years I supposedly did not. Now, if I owe it, which I understand I do, I will pay it. They were very nice about how much I owe. Instead of $275.80 multiplied by 48 months, which is $13,238.40 - they are offering something less.

They said they will charge me based on a formula and it would come out to just $172.87 per month. So that comes out to $8,297.76. They said I can pay it off over a 12 month period, which is also nice. So instead of $20,928, I am saving $12,630.24. Which is nice.

What do you think I should do? Pay it all? It was on the lease agreement, but you know those things, they are huge! It was their fault for not billing me. I honestly did not know I had to pay this. So what you think?