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Your bill is made up of charges for water and wastewater, including a standing charge.
If you have a meter, we bill you based on how much water you use, if not you are charged according to the rateable value of your property.
If you are having trouble understanding your bill, view our bill explanation
All properties are charged for water by one of two methods:
1. Since 1989 all new properties must have a meter installed which measures the amount of water entering the property. In addition, customers may have asked us to fit a meter. This allows us to calculate charges for water supply based on how much water is being used.
2. If there is no meter, properties, particularly domestic properties built before 1989, are charged for their water services based on the Rateable Value of that property.
If your charges are based on the rateable value of your property, i.e. you don't have a meter, your bills will not take into account the number of people at the property or how much water you use. Unfortunately, you cannot change your rateable value and neither can we. The values have not been updated for nearly 20 years and no new properties built since then have been given a rateable value. As this system does not use the current banding used for Council Tax, it will not be affected by changes to your property or your circumstances.
Since your charges are not affected by how many people are in your property or how much water you use, a single occupier in a property with a high rateable value could be paying far too much for their water. Also, properties that seem to be the same can have a different rateable value and smaller properties, for example purpose-built flats with good amenities, may have a higher rateable value than larger properties. We would prefer that customers had a meter fitted and were charged for the water they use, as rateable value is not an ideal basis for charging, particularly as it has not been updated for many years. We believe charging on a meter is fairer and easier to understand.
You can apply online to have a water meter.
All customers pay fixed charges as a part of their bill. Fixed charges are paid in advance.
The charges cover the fixed costs for providing your water services and contribute to the cost of maintaining the water and sewerage networks. Fixed charges do not change with the amount of water you use and they cover the cost of services that are the same for all customers, such as sending bills and providing connections. Every time you get your bill it will show a fixed charge for your fresh water and a separate fixed charge to your waste water company.
If you have a question about your waste water you should contact your sewerage provider.
You will only be billed for fixed charges for the time you are responsible for the property. As you will usually pay for your fixed charges in advance, if you are metered, your first bill will usually be for fixed charges only. When you move out and we send you a final bill we will refund any fixed charges that you may have overpaid.
Ofwat, our regulator, carefully monitors all our charges and prices can only go up as much as the regulator thinks is absolutely necessary.
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