SOUTHERN WATER Charges

Moonlight16
Moonlight16 Posts: 6 Forumite
edited 16 January 2019 at 7:20PM in Water bills
Since I moved to new area & new water supply company whenever I get the water bill I’m getting shock as I could not believe that how come Water bill can be higher than Electricity or GAS supply charges. Approximate 50 to 60 p/m water bill.

Yes I do have water saving items and I do have meter installed, I’ve done everything to keep my water cost down, however, I cannot control below charges or switch to other supplier can I ?

I’ve done bit of digging to my water bill as I still can’t believe how come water standing charges and supply cost can be higher than Electricity or GAS Supply.

SOUTHERN WATER Charges
Cost for Waste Water charge is 175 %,
75 % more than normal water charges ( 239.00p ,136.5p)
Water Standing Charge: 20.2 % to cost of normal water (6.11p /day)
Waste Water Standing Charge: 35 % to cost of waste water (17.6 p/day)
Basically, for a same period Waste water charge is ~ 188 % higher than Normal water supply standing charge
AS Waste water charged at 92.5% of normal water (Standard Water company charge they claim industry research etc ) , my Total bill is made up of 65 % of Waste water charges and 35 % Normal water supply. :mad:

IS this fair that we pay more than double amount for a Waste water than normal supplied water?

Really, are these Water companies are regulated?
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  • RS2OOO
    RS2OOO Posts: 389
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    I've not done the calculations you have done, but I can say I had a huge shock after moving into a property where my wastewater is with Southern Water (Supply is from another company).

    Family of 4 on a meter and we have all the usual water saving devices around the house, washing machine goes on no more than 3 times per Week, dishwasher goes on most days. 4x showers per day.

    I claim rebates because none of our surface water runs to the sewer and we have a separate meter for the outside tap because that water only goes on the garden and none to the drains.

    After these rebates it works out at £55 per Month to Southern Water for wastewater and £30 per Month to my water supplier.

    Total is around £1020 per year made up of £660 for wastewater and £360 for supply water.

    Never been on a meter before so I have just assumed this is normal for metered properties, but in our previous non-metered property the total water bill was around £355 per year.

    So yes, these charges came as a huge shock and I still struggle to comprehend them after 2 years here.
  • Cardew
    Cardew Posts: 29,034
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    Since I moved to new area & new water supply company whenever I get the water bill I’m getting shock as I could not believe that how come Water bill can be higher than Electricity or GAS supply charges. Approximate 50 to 60 p/m water bill.

    Yes I do have water saving items and I do have meter installed, I’ve done everything to keep my water cost down, however, I cannot control below charges or switch to other supplier can I ?

    I’ve done bit of digging to my water bill as I still can’t believe how come water standing charges and supply cost can be higher than Electricity or GAS Supply.

    SOUTHERN WATER Charges
    Cost for Waste Water charge is 175 %,
    75 % more than normal water charges ( 239.00p ,136.5p)
    Water Standing Charge: 20.2 % to cost of normal water (6.11p /day)
    Waste Water Standing Charge: 35 % to cost of waste water (17.6 p/day)
    Basically, for a same period Waste water charge is ~ 188 % higher than Normal water supply standing charge
    AS Waste water charged at 92.5% of normal water (Standard Water company charge they claim industry research etc ) , my Total bill is made up of 65 % of Waste water charges and 35 % Normal water supply. :mad:

    IS this fair that we pay more than double amount for a Waste water than normal supplied water?

    Really, are these Water companies are regulated?


    Welcome to the forum.


    The charges for sewerage are considerably higher than the charge for water with some companies; although a direct comparison is difficult because of the differing Surface Water Charges.


    SouthWest Water have the highest charges in UK and pay £1.84/m3 for water and £3.42/m3 for sewerage (£5.26/m3 total) plus a £53 standing charge for water and the same £53 for Sewerage.


    The high sewerage charge reflects the large catchment area and relatively low population paying the charges.


    Conversely districts covered by Severn Trent and Thames, with more urban areas have, have lower sewerage charges than water charges(£1.46/m3/0.96/m3 for Severn Trent)


    Is it fair - of course not. Blame Maggie Thatcher!!
  • Foxy16
    Foxy16 Posts: 247
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    RS2OOO wrote: »
    we have a separate meter for the outside tap because that water only goes on the garden and none to the drains.

    Hi, how did you arrange this please , as my usage in the summer is high, have a large garden, veg plots, greenhouse which is watered from outside tap, so like you this water is only used on garden.
  • Cardew
    Cardew Posts: 29,034
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    Anyone can get a lower charge for Surface Water Drainage if none of the water from gutters, garden etc enters the sewerage system and goes to a soakaway. Having that water going to water butts will not normally count.





    Water companies make an allowance that a percentage of the mains water supplied(normally between 5% to 10%) will not return to the sewer and will go on garden and evaporation.


    However if you believe you have a higher percentage of water used on the garden, filling a swimming pool/pond etc, you can claim relief from the sewerage charge of that supplied water.


    To achieve this you have to apply to the water company and get a meter fitted to your outside tap.



    Unless things have changed recently, you have to pay for the meter and getting it fitted; then inspected by the water company.



    I think it fair to say it is not a procedure that the water companies like and encourage!!
  • Since I moved to new area & new water supply company whenever I get the water bill I’m getting shock as I could not believe that how come Water bill can be higher than Electricity or GAS supply charges. Approximate 50 to 60 p/m water bill.

    Yes I do have water saving items and I do have meter installed, I’ve done everything to keep my water cost down, however, I cannot control below charges or switch to other supplier can I ?

    I’ve done bit of digging to my water bill as I still can’t believe how come water standing charges and supply cost can be higher than Electricity or GAS Supply.

    SOUTHERN WATER Charges
    Cost for Waste Water charge is 175 %,
    75 % more than normal water charges ( 239.00p ,136.5p)
    Water Standing Charge: 20.2 % to cost of normal water (6.11p /day)
    Waste Water Standing Charge: 35 % to cost of waste water (17.6 p/day)
    Basically, for a same period Waste water charge is ~ 188 % higher than Normal water supply standing charge
    AS Waste water charged at 92.5% of normal water (Standard Water company charge they claim industry research etc ) , my Total bill is made up of 65 % of Waste water charges and 35 % Normal water supply. :mad:

    IS this fair that we pay more than double amount for a Waste water than normal supplied water?

    Really, are these Water companies are regulated?

    I'm sorry, but I don't really understand your query. :o

    Perhaps if you could define what you consider is "fair" when it comes to paying for various services provided, it may become more clearer. :)
  • RS2OOO
    RS2OOO Posts: 389
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    edited 17 January 2019 at 6:08PM
    Cardew wrote: »
    Anyone can get a lower charge for Surface Water Drainage if none of the water from gutters, garden etc enters the sewerage system and goes to a soakaway. Having that water going to water butts will not normally count.

    Water companies make an allowance that a percentage of the mains water supplied(normally between 5% to 10%) will not return to the sewer and will go on garden and evaporation.

    However if you believe you have a higher percentage of water used on the garden, filling a swimming pool/pond etc, you can claim relief from the sewerage charge of that supplied water.

    To achieve this you have to apply to the water company and get a meter fitted to your outside tap.

    Unless things have changed recently, you have to pay for the meter and getting it fitted; then inspected by the water company.
    I think it fair to say it is not a procedure that the water companies like and encourage!!

    Some of this isn't strictly correct based on my experience.

    Found a form on the water company's website "Surface Water Non-return to Sewer rebate". Filled that in, got a rebate and subsequent rebates automatically applied every 6 Months.

    Then I enquired about the outside tap. They said if I fit a meter and give them the readings 3 weeks before my 6 monthly bill they would deduct charges accordingly.

    So I bought an approved meter for around £30, fitted it to the outdoor supply pipe and give them the updated reading every 6 Months. (And take photos for my own records). Each time I do this I get a refund back to my account. I'm averaging around 13m3 every 6 Months but this will increase as I'm building a 3000 gallon pond.

    Foxy16 wrote: »

    Hi, how did you arrange this please , as my usage in the summer is high, have a large garden, veg plots, greenhouse which is watered from outside tap, so like you this water is only used on garden.

    See above.
    Everything has been surprisingly straight forward to date.
  • Thanks all for your notes. Surface water charges I believe is very know topic as this is everywhere mentioned on water company website and Bill etc. Installation of water meter out side tap is one of the good ways of saving on water bill.

    Scenario here is almost nothing to 0% water usage for Garden /out door tap and waste water (outdoor drainage, in house used water shower, bath etc) is going to public sewage (I think this is the scenario for most of the public who are leaving in City, new house construction, town, flats etc).

    Let say we done all that we could do to reduce the outdoor water usage and normal water usage bill has drop down to £ 15 If we apply current terrif (waste water treatment & standing charges 65%) that this water companies are charging, we will end up paying ~£ 27 for only inhouse waste water. Therefore, total bill will end up ~ £ 42.

    No matter how hard we try to save the water (in addition to my own example, comment by RS2000 is another real issue that we are facing), in my opinion, higher (waste water) charges/terrif by water companies will not let us save any amount. Plus, price increase each year and inflation factor.
    What is the topic? so, Topic is about water charges.

    What is fair? If we are paying £ 1000 to£ 1500 every year to GAS and Electricity suppliers and they have to go through the completion of customer can switch option and or customer can switch to any suppler they wish and are cost effective. This switching sption should be available to customer and such Regulation for water supply companies.
  • Cardew
    Cardew Posts: 29,034
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    What is fair? If we are paying £ 1000 to£ 1500 every year to GAS and Electricity suppliers and they have to go through the completion of customer can switch option and or customer can switch to any suppler they wish and are cost effective. This switching sption should be available to customer and such Regulation for water supply companies.


    The Regulator for Water supply is Ofwat who is the one Regulator who uses their teeth. They set targets, control revenue and profit of each company. You might like to read their website https://www.ofwat.gov.uk/


    The Water Industry suffered from massive under-investment for decades. It was a political master stroke to privatise an industry with a crumbling, largely Victorian infrastructure and pass the buck to customers to pay for modernisation over the next few decades.


    That privatisation was compounded by splitting the UK into regions such that the costs are unfairly divided up and customers pay hugely differing amounts.


    How would competition reduce charges? Take SW Water who have a huge area and a low population. They have the task of maintaining the water treatment plants, sewerage plants, pipes and sewers etc etc.and their revenue and profit is tightly controlled by Ofwat.



    A company taking over would still have the same workload and restrictions
  • Moonlight16
    Moonlight16 Posts: 6 Forumite
    edited 20 January 2019 at 11:16AM
    Cardew wrote: »
    How would competition reduce charges? Take SW Water who have a huge area and a low population. They have the task of maintaining the water treatment plants, sewerage plants, pipes and sewers etc etc.and their revenue and profit is tightly controlled by Ofwat.

    A company taking over would still have the same workload and restrictions

    "SW Water who have a huge area " , Very true .... It means people have to pay that price if they are living in SW supply area.

    "A company taking over would still have the same workload and restrictions" , A Healthy competition can help local/new businesses to grow and jobs for local people . See what happened since GAS & Electricity regulations came in place , there are hundreds of smaller companies who are offering very competitive prices/tariffs.
  • I too am so disgusted with Southern Water. We have always had a water meter.My Average monthly DD has always been £24. Last year we were contacted by them saying our bill had been incorrectly made up and we were now to pay £48 pm until debt was cleared. Today iv spent at least 1 hour on the phone to be told my bills are correct had been looked into and we were continuing to be charged the same £48 pm. When I pointed out that the mistake was down to them last year I was told its the amount of water I’m using. Yet on my bill it says our use age is low 225 daily. I live with my husband in a 2 bed bungalow. We both work full time. I have a credit on my account also they are saying its only £5.78 but have not included my January payment. I ant see how they can justify doubling our DD.
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