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Water meters - pros and cons?

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Water Bills
593 replies 361.8K views
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  • t0rt0iset0rt0ise Forumite
    3.4K posts
    Tenth Anniversary 1,000 Posts Name Dropper
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    You could work out the approximate sum by using the average use and see how that varies from what you pay now.

    Average use amounts http://www.ccwater.org.uk/savewaterandmoney/averagewateruse/

    I just changed from assessed charge to water meter and think I will save about £100 a year. I'm in the Thames Water region which may mean it's not relevant to your costs.
  • Just bought a house with a water meter installed so switching from rates to a metered bill.

    We're with Northumbrian Water and for the three (me, my wife and son) of us it will be £33.11 per month as a standard charge until we know what the usage roughly will be. When it was just my wife and I living down south I'm sure we used to pay about £16 per month, and in November my wife is giving birth to our second child so I am concerned with paying so might have to see if I can change to rates at a later date.
    MFW: £65,421 to go!
  • think if you move into a house with a meter you are stuck with it. I have moved to a house with a meter and it's proving more expensive with standing charges and they only read the meter once a year if you pay by direct debit. This seems ridiculous as they sold the meters to save money but now only change payments once year!! This obviously works in their favour as they set my payments at $40 a month. Is used to pay about $16 before in a much bigger house with no water meter and my own septic tank ($45 to empty every three years or so). I had a big organic veg garden and watered ti whenever I felt like it so used lots of water. Now I hardly use any and pay more. Funny that if you pay quarterly they read the meter quarterly - can't see why they don't read them all o'h yes but then people wouldn't overpay would they for a whole year!!
  • just had another thought it seems sewage water is not metered but based on water used through the meter as an average. Is this usual? So no point saving water using hippos in the tank etc??
  • edited 12 September 2015 at 11:54AM
    undauntedundaunted Forumite
    1.9K posts
    edited 12 September 2015 at 11:54AM
    Well, apart from the fact that when you flush toilets they refill with water - flowing through the meter - so your hippos are saving money.

    The idea that the sewage isn't metered is a red herring - you've already paid for the water as it came in. You then pay for the disposal of what came in as a % because not all consumed water then goes into the sewer!

    If you're a low water user you can save considerably with a meter. If you are a higher user you'll pay more. Once the meter is in you have 12m to change your mind if it's proving uneconomical but any new occupiers are stuck with it.
  • anna42hmranna42hmr Forumite
    2.5K posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts
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    undaunted wrote: »
    Once the meter is in you have 12m to change your mind if it's proving uneconomical but any new occupiers are stuck with it.

    Not sure if it varies between water companies but severn trent allow two years (one month after fourth bill) to change your mind.

    I have recently had mine put in (17 august) and am really happy so far, they have put mine indoors (a flat) so its easy for me to check it (though has kind of made me paranoid about leaks developing :p so check it more frequently than i should).

    It has nearly halved my monthly direct debit (just over £38 down to just under £19). That said the money i would've paid via dd before is left in my Santander 123 account in case it ends up costing more than they estimated it to be (but at least i am earning interest on it rather than the water co!)

    I like the idea of the meters to be honest, as i pay for what i use for electricity etc so why should i not pay for what i used water wise. It has defiantly made me more conscious of what i am doing with it!
    MFW # 105
    2015 Overpaid £8095 / 2016 Overpaid £6983.24 / 2017 Overpaid £3583.12 / 2018 Overpaid £2583.12 / 2019 Overpaid £2583.12

    2020 Target £2000 / YTD total £861.04
    Total OP since mortgage started in 2015 = £24,688.64
  • undaunted wrote: »
    Well, apart from the fact that when you flush toilets they refill with water - flowing through the meter - so your hippos are saving money.

    The idea that the sewage isn't metered is a red herring - you've already paid for the water as it came in. You then pay for the disposal of what came in as a % because not all consumed water then goes into the sewer!

    many thanks got it now also negotiated lower monthly payments and refund!!
  • BigBellyBigBelly Forumite
    121 posts
    Part of the Furniture 100 Posts
    Is the water company liable if as a result of a neighbour getting a water meter installed, my shower and washing machine no longer work?


    My neighbour downstairs in my block of flats had a water meter installed and immediately after that the first time I used the shower, black powder came out of it and then the shower stopped working. The washing machine will also now only allow a small amount of water into it.


    My other neighbours had similar problems, with some residents having no water at all until the water company coming around to fix it.


    The way it looks to me, the water company broke my washing machine and shower and therefore they need to fix it.
  • My water bills were halved after having a Meter installed.
  • edited 26 August 2016 at 6:54AM
    sophiewilson930sophiewilson930 Forumite
    1 posts
    edited 26 August 2016 at 6:54AM
    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.
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