I rented out a room in my apartment to a roommate for four months. While rent was paid in full (as it was due at the beginning of the month) my former roommate owes their share of one month worth of bills and will likely end up owing two as it doesn't look like they intend to pay. I have not received the bills for July yet as there's a delay of a few weeks for one and a bit less than a month for the other.
I have a signed contract in which they agreed to pay, though it was not professionally drafted. I have received payments for two months of utilities in the past, one of which I have an electronic record of (though it was combined with their rent).
The problem (though it is strange to classify it as such) is that the debt owed is fairly small - a bit less than $100 currently. It will likely end up being a bit less than $200 if, as seems likely, both sets of bills are left unpaid. While not inconsequential, it's too small a sum to justify the expense and effort of hiring a lawyer and potentially even going to court.
What should I do in this situation?
I am prepared to accept a well reasoned answer for "nothing". It is still a relatively small loss to me in comparison to the gain of splitting the rent and a couple of the utility bills for those months.
Is it pragmatic for me to seek legal advice from a professional, despite the small debt? I don't want to waste anyone's time with a free consulation if I know that there's no realistic chance I will hire them and I don't want to hire someone for $100+ over such a small sum.
Is there some other way I can encourage my former roommate to pay without suing or harassing them?