Can a Landlord Sue for Utilities Not Billed Until After the Lease Expires?
The answer will depend in part on who is responsible to pay utilities under the lease terms. In NH, the landlord has thirty 30 days to deduct amounts owed under the lease and return any remaining balance from the security deposit. If the landlord fails to do so, it's possible a defense of waiver may be raised.
Please see the following NH statute:
540-A:7 Return of Security Deposit.
I. Except as provided in RSA 540-A:6, IV(c), a landlord shall return a security deposit to a tenant and pay the interest due, if any, within 30 days from the termination of the tenancy. If there are any damages to the premises, excluding reasonable wear and tear, the landlord may deduct the costs of repair from the security deposit. The landlord shall provide the tenant with a written, itemized list of any damages for which the landlord claims the tenant is liable, which shall indicate with particularity the nature of any repair necessary to correct any damage and satisfactory evidence that repair necessary to correct these damages has been or will be completed. Satisfactory evidence may include, but not be limited to, receipts for purchased repair materials and labor estimates, bills or invoices indicating the actual or estimated cost thereof.
II. If the tenant is required under the lease agreement to pay all or part of any increase in real estate taxes levied against the property and becoming due and payable during the term of the lease, or if there is unpaid rent due, or if there are other lawful charges due under the lease which remain unpaid, the landlord may deduct such share of real estate taxes or unpaid rent or unpaid charges from the amount of the security deposit. The landlord shall provide the tenant with a written, itemized list of any claim for unpaid rent or share of real estate taxes or unpaid charges for which the landlord claims the tenant is liable, which shall indicate with particularity the period for which the claim is being made.