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Thames Water bill pro rata before meter installation

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Water Bills
10 replies 2.9K views
muscimusci Forumite
13 posts
edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Water Bills
Good afternoon everyone,

I moved in to my current flat in early January 2019.

I received my first bill from TW only a month later and the amount was pretty high due to the fact (I later found out) that the bill was based on the chargeable value of my property.
The bill did not provide any information whatsoever on meter installation or general guidance.

After a week I received another bill (for the period Apr 19 to Apr 20) which was in excess of £1k!

After calling Thames Water I managed to find out that I would actually be able to have a meter installed at my property and thus I set an appointment for a meter installation which occurred in late March.

After the installation of the meter TW chased me for the payment of the bill that covered the period since my move in date to the installation of the meter (2 months and ½). I refused to pay this bill as, from previous bills in a metered property with the same amount of tenants, I knew that the amount would equate to at least 6 months of metered consumption.

Yesterday I received my first bill for the period since I installed the meter (6 months). HOWEVER, the bill also includes the amount of unmetered charges.
As it turns out, the latter amount is higher than the amount I was charged for my metered consumption…….

My question is: based on the above, do I have any grounds on which to contest this? I would like the initial 2 months and a half to be pro-rated according to the metered consumption registered to date – albeit I’m unsure as to whether this is possible. I’m hoping that the lack of information provided by TW in terms of consumer advice and the fact that they only sent me a letter only a month after I’d moved in should help to achieve this

I hope I’ve been clear enough.

Thank you very much in advance for your time.

Replies

  • JJ_EganJJ_Egan Forumite
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    You should contact all services when you move in .
    When you moved in you where on a non metered supply

    and owe money for that .You can ask nicely will they reduce the bill a bit .
  • muscimusci Forumite
    13 posts
    JJ_Egan wrote: »
    You should contact all services when you move in .
    When you moved in you where on a non metered supply

    and owe money for that .You can ask nicely will they reduce the bill a bit .

    Thanks for your reply.

    Yes, I owe money for that 2 month and a half period, but not an amount which is higher than what I actually consumed in 6 months!
  • CardewCardew Forumite
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    If you are not metered your water charges are based on the Rateable Value(RV) of your property. - not 'chargeable value'

    You can google RV but essentially it was the means of collecting 'local taxes' prior to the 1990 introduction of the Council Tax.

    Millions of houses are still paying RV based water charges sometimes because it is cheaper than meter based charges and often because people are not informed/can't be bothered.

    The previous occupant of your property appears to be in the latter category!!

    It is up to the property occupant to apply for a meter, and unless they do so, RV based charges apply.

    So you have no case for a reduction in charges for the period prior to your application. If you had a case, why shouldn't the previous occupant claim rebates for the (years?) he lived in the property. Indeed many of the millions on RV based charges that are paying more than they would be paying if metered, could claim years of rebates.
  • muscimusci Forumite
    13 posts
    Cardew wrote: »
    If you are not metered your water charges are based on the Rateable Value(RV) of your property. - not 'chargeable value'

    You can google RV but essentially it was the means of collecting 'local taxes' prior to the 1990 introduction of the Council Tax.

    Millions of houses are still paying RV based water charges sometimes because it is cheaper than meter based charges and often because people are not informed/can't be bothered.

    The previous occupant of your property appears to be in the latter category!!

    It is up to the property occupant to apply for a meter, and unless they do so, RV based charges apply.

    So you have no case for a reduction in charges for the period prior to your application. If you had a case, why shouldn't the previous occupant claim rebates for the (years?) he lived in the property. Indeed many of the millions on RV based charges that are paying more than they would be paying if metered, could claim years of rebates.

    Thanks for your reply.

    I live in an affluent area and the previous tenant could not be bothered at all indeed!

    I acknowledge and thank you for all the points you made, however I still think I've got a shot at convincing TW to reduce the charges prior to the meter installation due to the fact that I did inform them of my move and they still took a month to send me the first bill; I would have requested a meter installation much sooner had I known my charges were based on the RV of my house.

    Years of arguing with LAs and utility providers (most of the time successfully) are giving me hope!

    I will keep you posted.
  • Alter_egoAlter_ego Forumite
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    I had billing problems with TW recently.
    I found their phone service useless.
    I eventually used the online chat to set out in simple terms what the problem was and the solution I wanted. It took about 15 mins for them to agree.
    Loose means not tight, Lose means something is lost, simples no?
    Ignore me if you like, it's not the real me anyway.
  • muscimusci Forumite
    13 posts
    Alter_ego wrote: »
    I had billing problems with TW recently.
    I found their phone service useless.
    I eventually used the online chat to set out in simple terms what the problem was and the solution I wanted. It took about 15 mins for them to agree.

    Hi and thanks for your reply.

    What sort of problems did you have and how did you go about getting TW to agree if you don't mind saying?

    Thanks
  • Alter_egoAlter_ego Forumite
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    Problem was a first bill based on using the part of the meter reading after the decimal point (as the whole reading). Which doubled the 6 month bill. They then set up my direct debit based on incorrect usage figures. I simply stated that I would be cancelling the direct debit that day unless it was sorted immediately. It was.
    Good luck and try to keep things simple for them.
    Loose means not tight, Lose means something is lost, simples no?
    Ignore me if you like, it's not the real me anyway.
  • matelodavematelodave Forumite
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    Just be aware that withholding a payment can have a serious affect on your credit rating.

    Many water companies now report to the credit reference agencies.
    Never under estimate the power of stupid people in large numbers
  • Alter_egoAlter_ego Forumite
    3K posts
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    matelodave wrote: »
    Just be aware that withholding a payment can have a serious affect on your credit rating.

    Many water companies now report to the credit reference agencies.

    Yes but TW charge dd 6 months in advance of billing.
    Loose means not tight, Lose means something is lost, simples no?
    Ignore me if you like, it's not the real me anyway.
  • wild666wild666 Forumite
    425 posts
    Part of the Furniture 100 Posts Combo Breaker
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    Yorkshire Water gave me most of a months payments back as credit when they installed my water meter on the 10/5/19. As I live alone and use very little water it was only about 45p they took off Mays DD. If your meter is under the sink near the stop tap keep an eye on the readings, make sure there are no dripping taps, I did daily readings until the end of May then went to weekly readings.
    Someone please tell me what money is
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