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    • sophiewilson930
    • By sophiewilson930 29th Mar 16, 7:40 AM
    • 1 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    sophiewilson930
    A water meter works by recording the amount of water you use, so bills are based on your actual usage rather than the traditional flat charge based on the value of your property.

    At present, around 40 per cent of homes have a water meter. The rule of thumb is that small families in big homes are likely to be better off having a meter installed, while big families in small homes would probably be better off sticking to bills based on rateable value and avoiding a meter.

    If you have more bedrooms than occupants, say experts, you should probably get a meter.
    And if less people in your house then you could save money by switching to a water meter.
    Last edited by sophiewilson930; 26-08-2016 at 6:54 AM.
    • anotheruser
    • By anotheruser 19th Jun 16, 8:35 AM
    • 2,286 Posts
    • 1,424 Thanks
    anotheruser
    I pay £200 a year for un-metered.

    I'll be surprised if getting a meter will save us any money.
    • Jaffa cake
    • By Jaffa cake 12th Jul 16, 6:14 PM
    • 84 Posts
    • 38 Thanks
    Jaffa cake
    I am on un-metered water.
    My water bill from United utilities is around 600 GBP per year.
    I went onto their website, and I performed the "Would you be better off on a meter"

    It turns out, that we would pay around 60 GBP more a year for our water.

    There are 2 of us in our own 3 bed semi.

    United Utilities in the North West, are terrible in the prices they charge.
    • Cardew
    • By Cardew 13th Jul 16, 9:10 AM
    • 26,058 Posts
    • 12,527 Thanks
    Cardew
    I am on un-metered water.
    My water bill from United utilities is around 600 GBP per year.
    I went onto their website, and I performed the "Would you be better off on a meter"

    It turns out, that we would pay around 60 GBP more a year for our water.

    There are 2 of us in our own 3 bed semi.

    United Utilities in the North West, are terrible in the prices they charge.
    Originally posted by Jaffa cake
    The average annual consumption for a couple is approx. 110 cubic metres, although many use far less. That would cost £321pa then add standing charges of £70pa or £130 if you are not exempt from Surface water drainage charges. So £390 or £450pa.

    So it is difficult to see how you would pay £660pa. In any case you can get a meter fitted(free) and revert back to unmetered charges(within 12 months) if you find metered is more expensive.

    P.S. United Utilities are far from the most expensive in UK. Those in the South West pay nearly double your charges!
    • culpepper
    • By culpepper 13th Jul 16, 12:39 PM
    • 3,709 Posts
    • 6,037 Thanks
    culpepper
    Where we are, the waste water and the supply are seperate companies. the Waste water bill is calculated on a percentage of the supply. So when it became a metered supply, the waste bill went down too. We were paying something like (cant remember exactly ) £44 a month for the two and now it is about £17 I think. I had to contact them both when our first metered information came through because the excess they were charging had not been recalculated and we were still paying too much.
    • Knowmanythings
    • By Knowmanythings 24th Aug 16, 3:18 PM
    • 5 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    Knowmanythings
    I have had a meter fitted for only 6 months and am saving loads. I think the guidance of number of occupants in property subtracted from number of bedrooms is too blunt a tool. On this basis, I didn't change earlier, while I was supporting two offspring, who live away, by occasionally doing washing, providing short stay accommodation etc. Plus having large garden necessitating use of hosepipe. If not on meter, charge is based on council tax banding. Our Band D meant paying £650 a year. With meter, estimate was for £360 a year, but after six months usage of meter, they've dropped me to £15 a month, on estimate of £200 usage. Would definitely recommend meter and now wish I'd done it years ago - particularly as water company (Yorkshire) allows change back for free within two years (I think).
    • raldisplay
    • By raldisplay 24th Aug 16, 3:37 PM
    • 8 Posts
    • 3 Thanks
    raldisplay
    We got a water meter fitted as there are only 2 of us in the household and we are at work Mon-Fri. HOWEVER we like our garden so water it during the summer months most evenings. This has resulted in us paying more (about 15%) than before. Id stick with what you have. We wished we had of done.
    • Cardew
    • By Cardew 24th Aug 16, 3:50 PM
    • 26,058 Posts
    • 12,527 Thanks
    Cardew
    I have had a meter fitted for only 6 months and am saving loads. I think the guidance of number of occupants in property subtracted from number of bedrooms is too blunt a tool. On this basis, I didn't change earlier, while I was supporting two offspring, who live away, by occasionally doing washing, providing short stay accommodation etc. Plus having large garden necessitating use of hosepipe. If not on meter, charge is based on council tax banding. Our Band D meant paying £650 a year. With meter, estimate was for £360 a year, but after six months usage of meter, they've dropped me to £15 a month, on estimate of £200 usage. Would definitely recommend meter and now wish I'd done it years ago - particularly as water company (Yorkshire) allows change back for free within two years (I think).
    Originally posted by Knowmanythings
    Just to point out that unmetered water charges are not based on Council Tax banding'.

    The charges are based on the Rateable Value(RV) of the property. The RV was the 'local taxation' scheme in force prior to April 1990 when it changed to the Poll Tax and subsequently to the present Council Tax. Most RV values in UK were assessed between 1973 and 1990.

    Crucially the RV is nothing to do with the value of the property, and there is no correlation between RV and Council Tax banding. It is very possible for Property A to have a high RV and low Council Tax band, whilst Property B has a lower RV but a higher Council tax band.
    • matelodave
    • By matelodave 24th Aug 16, 5:21 PM
    • 2,580 Posts
    • 1,398 Thanks
    matelodave
    We got a water meter fitted as there are only 2 of us in the household and we are at work Mon-Fri. HOWEVER we like our garden so water it during the summer months most evenings. This has resulted in us paying more (about 15%) than before. Id stick with what you have. We wished we had of done.
    Originally posted by raldisplay
    We also like our garden and have an automatic watering system than runs from about April through to September (including when we are away) and we still save well over £300 a year with a meter compared to the RV charge
    Love makes the world go round - beer make it go round even faster
    • dorix
    • By dorix 7th Sep 16, 10:43 AM
    • 2 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    dorix
    There is just myself and my wife in our house and was thinking of asking for a meter BUT we are both keen gardeners. I grow a lot of fruit and vegetables and my wife flowers and shrubs.I don't believe in growing anything you can't eat! Our water supplier is Wessex Water who have never had any restrictions and we use quite a bit in the summer. Nobody has even mentioned about gardeners when discussing water meters.
    • Cardew
    • By Cardew 7th Sep 16, 12:55 PM
    • 26,058 Posts
    • 12,527 Thanks
    Cardew
    . Nobody has even mentioned about gardeners when discussing water meters.
    Originally posted by dorix
    It has been mentioned a lot, and obviously if you use a lot of water for gardening it might be advantageous to remain on charges based on Rateable Value(RV)

    However you have nothing to lose by trying a meter as you can revert back to RV charges within a year or 2 years(depending on company)

    In the long term it is pretty certain that meters will be made compulsory.
    • John_Pierpoint
    • By John_Pierpoint 7th Sep 16, 1:08 PM
    • 8,231 Posts
    • 7,383 Thanks
    John_Pierpoint
    Gardners suffer twice with water meters.
    If you are on a meter you pay for the nice fresh drinking water and then probably the same again for having it taken away by the sewer system - unless you are on a septic tank and not connected to the sewers.

    Do the calculation - stick the hose pipe into something where you know its size - In the summer I collect the "grey" water in an 80 litre plastic dustbin. 1,000litres = 1 tonne, The calculation is not difficult. Leaving a lawn sprinkler running gets expensive.
    Last edited by John_Pierpoint; 07-09-2016 at 1:10 PM.
    • Kalidog
    • By Kalidog 8th Sep 16, 2:33 PM
    • 3 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    Kalidog
    Water Meter allocated to incorrect address
    Our water usage has always seemed very high and we were paying around £90 per month.
    We are both retired and live in a bungalow. We were away for some weeks over last Christmas and fully expected our water usage to be relatively low but when the bill came in June we had apparently used MORE than the previous Summer.
    After a great deal of pressure and numerous phone calls regarding the high water usage and in exasperation telling our supplier that they needed to come and check for leaks a Customer Services lady said it sounded as if we had crossed Meters and would pass this to the Crossed Meter Team.
    Within a few days they came and carried out the tests and confirmed that we had been paying for our neighbours water usage 2 x adults 2 x young boys for the past two and half years.
    We were actually using around a third of what was being billed and our costs have reduced to around £30 per month.
    We received a substantial rebate. Our neighbours were NOT billed for the shortfall.
    Everyone should check that their Meter is allocated to the correct address particularly as the suppliers appear to have a Team dedicated to this. I wonder just how often this happen!
    Mistakes occur when humans input data but you will find resistance to this possibility.
    Kaley
    • Belinda Langley
    • By Belinda Langley 15th Oct 16, 10:38 AM
    • 2 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    Belinda Langley
    South east water have just imposed water metering and as a baseline our water and sewage bills have just increased by 50% for 4 adults in a house. Working out an average dish/clothes washing, showering and loo flushing while using A+++ machines, a crappy 'could get wetter if were !!!!ed on' shower (just as well we didn't get the upgrade!) and a teeny weeny loo cistern we are looking at higher than that. Luckily we don't have a garden with a greater need than our rain butt collects. We go to a local car wash. I am thinking it will be cheaper to take the dogs to a similar.... How can these charges be justified? You can bet your last penny they won't go into improvements- should I look into getting shares?- just joking!
    • matelodave
    • By matelodave 15th Oct 16, 11:10 AM
    • 2,580 Posts
    • 1,398 Thanks
    matelodave
    I suggest you read your own meter every month to see how you are doing - you might find that you can save a bit or that it's not as much as the estimate. If so, ask them to reduce your DD.

    IMO It's not unreasonable for anyone to pay for what they use - they have the opportunity to reduce their consumption and thereby reduce their costs.

    It's worthwhile reading your meter regularly just to make sure that you don't have any leaks We've been doing it ever since we moved in and got a meter fitted (saving us about £300 a year).

    After a couple of years we suddenly saw a big increase in our consumption which turned out to be a leak. Fortunately it only ran for about five weeks, but it increased our average montly consumption by over 40cu.m of water in that time and could have undermined our foundations had it continued unchecked.
    Last edited by matelodave; 15-10-2016 at 11:19 AM.
    Love makes the world go round - beer make it go round even faster
    • Cardew
    • By Cardew 15th Oct 16, 11:34 AM
    • 26,058 Posts
    • 12,527 Thanks
    Cardew
    South east water have just imposed water metering and as a baseline our water and sewage bills have just increased by 50% for 4 adults in a house. Working out an average dish/clothes washing, showering and loo flushing while using A+++ machines, a crappy 'could get wetter if were !!!!ed on' shower (just as well we didn't get the upgrade!) and a teeny weeny loo cistern we are looking at higher than that. Luckily we don't have a garden with a greater need than our rain butt collects. We go to a local car wash. I am thinking it will be cheaper to take the dogs to a similar.... How can these charges be justified? You can bet your last penny they won't go into improvements- should I look into getting shares?- just joking!
    Originally posted by Belinda Langley
    Welcome to the forum.

    You can blame Maggie for 'selling off the family silver'! Raising £Billions by selling off a largely Victorian infrastructure to private investors and getting customers to pay for the modernisation.

    The Regulator(Ofwat) approves a schedule of modernisation and strictly controls the revenue and profit all companies can make. That said it is a win/win situation for the water companies as their shares have shown over the years.

    On the subject of charges for metering against charges based on Rateable Value(RV), it is obviously fair that we should pay for what we use, rather than base charges on an obsolete RV system. All properties built post 1990 are metered.

    P.S.
    If you think your charges are high, have a look at the South West!
    • Belinda Langley
    • By Belinda Langley 15th Oct 16, 10:28 PM
    • 2 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    Belinda Langley
    I have no issue with paying for what I use, and we are keeping a close eye what we are using. We were frugal before but our bills will be based on 4 adults which expects usage to be high.
    Husband works for a water company so knew they were coming and changed appliances accordingly. What was annoying was the huge increase and the attitude of the water company employees on the phones. I am sure in time it will settle down. Rather than impose such a high tariff from the outset rather than wait a while before deciding if we are a heavy user or not. I cannot make further 'savings' as we have prepared for this day. Slap in the face is how it feels. hey ho! Oh and I am old enough to remember the silver being sold off cheap and investors getting rich
    • Jaffa cake
    • By Jaffa cake 28th Oct 16, 3:56 PM
    • 84 Posts
    • 38 Thanks
    Jaffa cake
    The average annual consumption for a couple is approx. 110 cubic metres, although many use far less. That would cost £321pa then add standing charges of £70pa or £130 if you are not exempt from Surface water drainage charges. So £390 or £450pa.

    So it is difficult to see how you would pay £660pa. In any case you can get a meter fitted(free) and revert back to unmetered charges(within 12 months) if you find metered is more expensive.

    P.S. United Utilities are far from the most expensive in UK. Those in the South West pay nearly double your charges!
    Originally posted by Cardew

    I have just checked, and my 2016 - 2017 water bill will be GBP505.45

    United Utilities give a customer 2 years from date of installation to revert back to being billed without using the water meter.

    So at least I can give it a try


    JC
    • matelodave
    • By matelodave 28th Oct 16, 5:26 PM
    • 2,580 Posts
    • 1,398 Thanks
    matelodave
    If you've got a water meter your water bill will cost you for what you've used, however in the interim the water co will estimate your consumption and base you direct debits on the estimate.

    When the meter get raed and they know exactly how much you've used they will either refund or credit you with any over payments or adjust next year's direct debit to recover any shortfall.

    By putting a bit of effort into reading your meter yourself you can work out whether your DD will cover your consumption of it it's way too much. If so, speak to the water company to get it adjusted.

    Reading a water meter is no more difficult to do than reading a gas or leccy meter except that it's probably down a hole in the garden or pavement. Once you know what you are using and when, you can do something about reducing it. Alternatively wait till the bill comes in and then you'll have something to whinge about
    Love makes the world go round - beer make it go round even faster
    • harrym1byt
    • By harrym1byt 29th Oct 16, 2:44 PM
    • 17 Posts
    • 6 Thanks
    harrym1byt
    Our experience of a meter with YW.
    We were charged on RV until recently, £533 per year was this years bill, paid in 8x instalments.

    I used the online calculator which is supposed to work out what it would cost per year, if we were on a meter. There are two of us, living in a semi and both retired. We never water the garden and are supplied by Yorkshire Water. The calculator suggested we would likely end up paying £170 [1] per annum, so we requested a meter be installed. Four working days later, it was fitted under the kitchen sink. No charge and we get two years to decide whether to go back to RV billing.

    YW estimated (?) we would use 90cuM (246L per day) so based our charge on that, £324 per annum, £27 per month x12. It has been in just 23 days and I logged it daily, out of curiosity. Sometimes we exceed the 246L, but not often. Our average is 214L per day which will be around 78cuM per annum, versus the 90cuM estimate - so I am expecting we will be over paying and get a refund.

    YW's letter only said 90cuM / £324 per annum, so I also asked YW to write to me with a breakdown of how they had arrived at this...

    Their reply was as follows:-
    Water standing charge £23.28
    Sewerage standing charge £8.76
    Surface water drainage charge £38.92
    So £62.21 before any water is recorded on the meter

    Water is charged at £1.29 per !!!
    Sewerage volume at 95% of metered, £1.61

    We also received a £126 refund of the RV charge we had paid for the year so far.

    For the next year, I am expecting our bill to be between 50% and 65% of what we have paid for many years. This without any changes in our living style at all.

    [1] Why the online calculator got it so far out I don't know, perhaps it omits the standing charges, but something to be wary of. How YW were able to estimate how much we might use, is another mystery, but not that far out. Maybe they have access to figures of how many are living here?
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