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  • FIRST POST
    • MSE Martin
    • By MSE Martin 21st Jun 03, 6:44 PM
    • 8,108Posts
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    MSE Martin
    Water Bills questions and comment
    • #1
    • 21st Jun 03, 6:44 PM
    Water Bills questions and comment 21st Jun 03 at 6:44 PM
    Please place your water bill questions and comments here





    Addition by Fran - link to Martin's article HERE











    Last edited by Fran; 12-02-2005 at 1:08 AM. Reason: add link to water article on main site
Page 36
    • Sabina94
    • By Sabina94 13th Aug 16, 12:50 PM
    • 5 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Sabina94
    I am sorry to interrupt You , but where are You from ?
    • zulfia
    • By zulfia 17th Sep 16, 2:11 PM
    • 6 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    zulfia
    the same as doreen
    I am in exactly the same situation as Doreen, only my water supplier is Northumbrian water. From 2013 to 2016 my water bill increased by one third. A the same time I stopped watering the garden, I stopped taking showers and baths (I do this in the gym now), my husband moved out long time ago and I lived on my own. I should have reduced water usage at least by half, instead every bill shows increase and the bill increased by 1/3 in the last 2 years. I wrote to the company. I wonder how they take water meter readings. Does anybody anybody come and take the reading?
    • zulfia
    • By zulfia 17th Sep 16, 2:32 PM
    • 6 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    zulfia
    why my water usage increases in the bill although it should go down
    I can see that many people experience a sharp and unjustified rise in the water bill. Does anybody actually take the water meter reading? Do they come to the property for that? How does the meter work? Can it be wrong and why? Is there a diagram of water usage? I wonder if anybody knows the answers.

    My water bill from Northumbrian water increased by 1/3 in the last two years. At the same time I stopped washing at home and have been doing in the gym for at least a year, I do not water the garden but I did it previously (two years ago), my husband moved out 1,5 years ago and he was staying at home only occasionally for a year before that. I use the washing machine only once or twice a week, less than before. Why does my water usage go up significantly in every bill?
    • squinz
    • By squinz 8th Oct 16, 9:43 AM
    • 62 Posts
    • 65 Thanks
    squinz
    Am I paying too much?
    My husband and I rented our last property. Two showers a day, careful with our water. Our monthly bills were £20.80 for 2 bed terrace. It didn't have a water meter.


    We moved in March to a 3 bed bungalow. It has a water meter and prices were hiked to £35.25. Its still just us and no changes to water usage. I did question it with the first bill and think I was fobbed off with it being due to the size of the property/historic ratable values? However reading on here, that shouldn't come into it with a water meter in place?


    Can I challenge it again? I submitted a reading the other day and it has reduced slightly to £33.12 but its still considerably more than we used to pay...I will follow the advice about checking the meter with 2 people in case of leak etc.


    Can anyone advise? TIA
    • Cardew
    • By Cardew 8th Oct 16, 12:25 PM
    • 26,579 Posts
    • 12,808 Thanks
    Cardew
    My husband and I rented our last property. Two showers a day, careful with our water. Our monthly bills were £20.80 for 2 bed terrace. It didn't have a water meter.


    We moved in March to a 3 bed bungalow. It has a water meter and prices were hiked to £35.25. Its still just us and no changes to water usage. I did question it with the first bill and think I was fobbed off with it being due to the size of the property/historic ratable values? However reading on here, that shouldn't come into it with a water meter in place?


    Can I challenge it again? I submitted a reading the other day and it has reduced slightly to £33.12 but its still considerably more than we used to pay...I will follow the advice about checking the meter with 2 people in case of leak etc.


    Can anyone advise? TIA
    Originally posted by squinz
    On your last unmetered property the amount of water you used simply didn't matter. Your charges were based on the Rateable Value(RV) which would have been assessed between 1973 and 1990.

    With your current property its size doesn't matter and your bill will be based on your water consumption and standing charges.

    You might also check to see if you are being charged for Surface Water Drainage - which you might be able to get refunded.

    You don't say your water company, but generally £20 a month for RV based charges is below average, and £33 a month for metered is not high.
    • squinz
    • By squinz 9th Oct 16, 8:12 AM
    • 62 Posts
    • 65 Thanks
    squinz
    Thank you for your reply, Cardew.

    Ive just checked my bill and it appears there is a surface water charge. Im with united utilities if that helps. Why might that be refundable?

    Thanks again.
    • reeac
    • By reeac 9th Oct 16, 9:44 AM
    • 1,054 Posts
    • 423 Thanks
    reeac
    If the water coming off your roof is piped away to soak aways rather than down the drains that take foul water then you can get that element removed from your water bill. I did this by sending the water company a copy of our bungalow plans which showed the drainage system. I believe that you can achieve the same end by other means but I happened to have the plans as I had the place built for our occupation.
    • Cardew
    • By Cardew 9th Oct 16, 11:13 AM
    • 26,579 Posts
    • 12,808 Thanks
    Cardew
    Thank you for your reply, Cardew.

    Ive just checked my bill and it appears there is a surface water charge. Im with united utilities if that helps. Why might that be refundable?

    Thanks again.
    Originally posted by squinz
    Your Charges are here:

    http://www.unitedutilities.com/our-charges-2015-2016.aspx

    You pay £126 pa in fixed charges, and as you pay approx. £400 a year in total, you are paying for approx. 92 cubic metres a year; which is below average for a couple.

    The UU section on Surface water Drainage is here:

    http://www.unitedutilities.com/surface-water-drainage.aspx

    If you can reclaim SWD charges it is a £54pa rebate.

    Ask neighbours if they pay the SWD charge? If you have a sewer/drains cover it is fairly easy to check, spray some water on a gutter(or wait until it rains) and check nothing enters the drains/sewer.
    • phsci
    • By phsci 10th Oct 16, 1:54 PM
    • 45 Posts
    • 68 Thanks
    phsci
    Is there a diagram of water usage?
    Originally posted by zulfia
    Look at this report from the Energy Saving Trust (At Home With Water 2):
    http://www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/sites/default/files/reports/AHHW2%20final.pdf and go to page 14 for a diagram. Good evidence-based summary of typical domestic consumption patterns.
    • Dunenergy
    • By Dunenergy 19th Oct 16, 9:10 PM
    • 7 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Dunenergy
    Hi,

    I recently moved into a flat which is about 2 years old but has never been lived in. I sent Thames Water an email with a picture of my meter reading. They replied saying that my bill was set at £18 a month. Today I received a bill saying my direct debit would be £8 per month. I'm the only occupant and am generally not at home between 8.30 - 6pm on weekdays. I was wondering if this is a normal bill or does it seem low (not that I'm complaining)
    • Cardew
    • By Cardew 20th Oct 16, 8:00 PM
    • 26,579 Posts
    • 12,808 Thanks
    Cardew
    Hi,

    I recently moved into a flat which is about 2 years old but has never been lived in. I sent Thames Water an email with a picture of my meter reading. They replied saying that my bill was set at £18 a month. Today I received a bill saying my direct debit would be £8 per month. I'm the only occupant and am generally not at home between 8.30 - 6pm on weekdays. I was wondering if this is a normal bill or does it seem low (not that I'm complaining)
    Originally posted by Dunenergy
    Thames water charges are here:

    https://www.thameswater.co.uk/tw/common/downloads/literature-water-waste-water-charges/Charges_schedule_2016-17.pdf

    It is not possible to work out accurately your water sewerage charge per cubic metre(m3) as it varies by area.

    However the minimum standing charge is £60.16 a year and you can work out the average cost per M3 from the link above - the average is 55m3 pa for a single occupant.

    Could it be that the developer paid your standing charges for 2016/17 and your account was in credit?
    • R24cloud
    • By R24cloud 18th Nov 16, 6:16 PM
    • 1 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    R24cloud
    Water bill credit
    I pay £40/month by DD to Anglian Water. I have to wait until April for this to be reduced (see below) but we don't use anything like this.
    But the problem is, is that they hold £295 credit on my account. Do I have any right to ask for some or all of this back as its a fair chunk of cash they are sitting on?
    Any comments gratefully received!
    • Cardew
    • By Cardew 18th Nov 16, 7:34 PM
    • 26,579 Posts
    • 12,808 Thanks
    Cardew
    I pay £40/month by DD to Anglian Water. I have to wait until April for this to be reduced (see below) but we don't use anything like this.
    But the problem is, is that they hold £295 credit on my account. Do I have any right to ask for some or all of this back as its a fair chunk of cash they are sitting on?
    Any comments gratefully received!
    Originally posted by R24cloud
    Welcome to the forum.

    I assume you are metered?

    When did you have your last bill based on meter reading?

    I pay just over £40 a month and had my last bill in June. If I look at my account now I will be well over £200 in credit - but next month I will have a 6 monthly bill that will use up all my credit and might give me a small debit balance.

    Similarly your £295 credit might be the same. If you are certain - from meter readings - that you are paying too much then contact them and they should either reduce your DD or refund some of the credit.

    You also have the option not to pay by DD but 6 monthly.
    • Rodders53
    • By Rodders53 13th Dec 16, 8:53 AM
    • 377 Posts
    • 270 Thanks
    Rodders53
    I have just got my Anglian DD recduced from £39 pm to £19 pm by calling their Customer Services.
    Moved home 3.5 months ago. First bill was such that it is obvious we are low water users.

    You should call them and ask for refund.

    I shouldbe paying about £30 pm really but the revised DD will use up the credit balance by the next bill in June.
    • Molkogirl2
    • By Molkogirl2 18th Feb 17, 6:34 PM
    • 1 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Molkogirl2
    Hi. I contacted Thames Water last year to chance the household bill to be addressed to me (only in my husbands name before- the only bill he did pay- or so i thought!) i was instantly hit with a bill for over £700 in arrears.
    I was shocked and upset, and as a newly single parent of 3 with no income, very worried. I contacted them and they said they could send out a payment card so i could pay off bit by bit. Relief. However, this never arrived despite several phone calls and emails. It has now been passed to debt collection- but i have had no information as to what Collection agency or how i start paying. I am worried baliffs will just turn up at door and that fees will be added making it more impossible to pay.
    • rosie101
    • By rosie101 20th Feb 17, 4:50 PM
    • 6 Posts
    • 4 Thanks
    rosie101
    Unexpected outstanding Bill payment whilst on a water meter
    I have just received a demand for payment of £179 from South East Water.
    However I was completely unaware there was an outstanding balance.
    My understanding of having a water meter is that a direct debit is set up and this automatically adjusts to cover the necessary payments - The same as it does with a gas or electric bill.

    Having spoken to the water board today they have said I am on a capped payment plan and so they can only increase it by £5 every 6 months.

    This underpayment has been going on for well over a year and I have only been made aware of it this January.
    The water board have said it is stated in my yearly bill that the account was in debit.
    I have to be honest I don't scrutinise every bill I receive and read every bit of print. But even if I did I still don't think it's that clear.
    Looking back at these bills it simply says Account Balance and because it doesn't have a credit (CR) after it I'm suppose to know I owe them more money.
    It also says in the last paragraph on the page the following "To help you with this increase, we have set your payments at a lower level than that required" - this isn't bolded text or highlighted in anyway, and the sentence isn't particularly clear - a lower level required of what?

    Surely this is an error with the water board, and having a bill capped in this way without telling people about a capped plan doesn't allow someone to address an increase or plan for it instead of just being landed with a large bill.

    Has anyone else come across this? I feel this is misleading and something that needs to be addressed by an ombudsman.

    I suspect the reason this has happened is probably due to the rebate from claiming back a year's worth of surface water costs due to the property having a soak-away. This resulted in a the account being heavily in credit and only a £4 a month water bill - they were then unable to get up to the correctly amount being used with only being able to increase the direct debit by £5 every 6 months. (this rebate was made over 5 years ago!)

    The water board have so far offered to spread the outstanding balance across 12 monthly payments on top of my current water bill. I have rejected this as I feel they are at fault through their billing process and should absorb the costs themselves - I'm currently waiting to hear back from them with their findings.

    UPDATE
    The water board have come back and offered to wipe off 3/4's of the £179 bill, the remaining amount will be spread over my monthly direct debits - it took some persistence and having to go from one superior to the next, but I eventually got there.
    Last edited by rosie101; 22-02-2017 at 10:39 AM. Reason: update on result
    • Raxiel
    • By Raxiel 20th Feb 17, 6:22 PM
    • 271 Posts
    • 102 Thanks
    Raxiel
    Hi. I contacted Thames Water last year to chance the household bill to be addressed to me (only in my husbands name before- the only bill he did pay- or so i thought!) i was instantly hit with a bill for over £700 in arrears.
    I was shocked and upset, and as a newly single parent of 3 with no income, very worried. I contacted them and they said they could send out a payment card so i could pay off bit by bit. Relief. However, this never arrived despite several phone calls and emails. It has now been passed to debt collection- but i have had no information as to what Collection agency or how i start paying. I am worried baliffs will just turn up at door and that fees will be added making it more impossible to pay.
    Originally posted by Molkogirl2
    I can't advise how to sort out your water account, I'm afraid, but since you are worried I wanted to post what I do know to try and set your mind at rest:

    Bailiffs only collect Court or Government debt (CCJs, taxes, local government fines etc). Unless this goes all the way to court, and you loose, and you still don't pay it, no one will come knocking.

    They may just mean they have passed it to their own debt collection team for them to arrange a payment schedule.

    If nothing happens for a while, I'd suggest putting the facts as you see them into writing to Thames, asking for a resolution. That way even if it does come to court (which hopefully it never will) you can demonstrate you've been reasonable from the start.

    That said, given that the account was in your husband's name when the charges were incurred, is it possible they've also been in contact with him?
    Last edited by Raxiel; 20-02-2017 at 6:31 PM. Reason: Added link
    • Hazelfairy
    • By Hazelfairy 21st Feb 17, 7:43 AM
    • 1 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Hazelfairy
    Really hoping someone can help me as I'm quite concerned about my water bill. Sorry if my post is a bit lengthy!

    Myself, my partner and our daughter moved into a rented 2 bed house on 31/1. I called southern water a week later to set up my account, direct debit etc. I was told our bill would be £51 a month. I set up the dd not thinking much of it, but later thought it seemed a little high.

    I spoke to someone on 16/2 about this, and submitted a reading to them of 201. Unfortunately we didn't take a reading on the day we moved in (presumed previous tenant/landlord had done so). Luckily though, we're on an automatic system so the last reading was on 24/1 when the property was empty, the man I spoke to suggested we use this as our starting point - this was a reading of 197. So in 2 weeks we had used 4 units which seemed reasonable. He said he would send this to the billing team to recalculate my bill, as the previous 197 is presumably what the previous tenants have used. He said this recalculation should take a few days.

    I received an email yesterday stating that my direct debit has now gone up to almost £65 a month. It states that they have calculated our bill up until 16/2, which would have come to £11.61. With that in mind, I simply cannot fathom where £65 a month has come from? We're really careful with water, I did an online calculator which suggested my bill might come to around £40 a month which seems a lot more reasonable, and a lot more like what we were expecting.

    Can anyone make any sense of why my bill has suddenly increased to an extortionate amount? There's only 2 adults here and a baby! We do washing 2/3 times a week, boil the minimum amount of water possible, don't wash cars or water our garden etc! I hope someone can make more sense than I can. Thank you!
    • Cardew
    • By Cardew 21st Feb 17, 9:29 AM
    • 26,579 Posts
    • 12,808 Thanks
    Cardew
    Can anyone make any sense of why my bill has suddenly increased to an extortionate amount? There's only 2 adults here and a baby! We do washing 2/3 times a week, boil the minimum amount of water possible, don't wash cars or water our garden etc! I hope someone can make more sense than I can. Thank you!
    Originally posted by Hazelfairy
    Welcome to the forum.

    I suspect that in spite of giving them a start meter reading of 197, the bill has not been re-calculated and you are being charged for the previous occupant's consumption and standing charges.

    You need to get hold of the bill and see exactly what are the charges.

    Get a letter from your letting agent stating when your tenancy started; also confirmation that they had checked previous occupant had paid their water bill.

    I would also cancel your Direct debit until the matter is sorted.
    • irisheyes153
    • By irisheyes153 16th Mar 17, 2:18 AM
    • 6 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    irisheyes153
    Yes, they do,
    Call your supplier and ask about Watersure and Watersure plus, you may be told you need a meter fitted but the government cap is £374.

    criteria include:
    Means tested benefits,
    young children in the house
    Low income
    Disablity/medical issue needing extra water usage
    people over the age of 64 in the house.

    its worth a check, and please note this is added moving forward and will not be added retrospectively wether you have asked the company about this before or not,.
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