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New build sewerage charges

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We live on a Taylor Wimpey site in Devon. We've been paying for sewerage since we moved in in 2017 but it now turns out some residents are not being charged. One resident has been told that there will be no charge until the site is finished. Is this true? Clearly some people are saving 100's of pounds.

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  • I'm not sure that we can tell you if it's true. I think you need to speak to the property management company and raise your concerns. Bear in mind if the others should have been paying they will be  charged, possibly back charged, this won't make you Mr / Mrs Popular. 
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  • Grumpy_chapGrumpy_chap Forumite
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    Is it mains sewerage or private?
    Do you pay the sewerage charge to Taylor Wimpey or to Wessex Water?
    If you are receiving a service, why don't you think you should pay for it?
    Maybe the residents that are not being charged are not yet connected to the sewerage system, but have been using a cork for the last three years!
  • waterways65waterways65 Forumite
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    It's main sewerage. Some of the people not paying are in the same street and moved in at the same time so it's not a matter of them not being connected.
    The relevant water company is South West Water but they're obviously giving people mixed messages.
    Unfortunately there is no management company as yet so I can't ask them. 
  • Grumpy_chapGrumpy_chap Forumite
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    So, you receive mains water and mains sewerage services from South West Water, and you pay the proper fees based upon metered consumption.  It sounds like you are paying correctly.

    How do you know that others are not paying? 
    If they are paying for metered water, then they are known to the supplier and it is for the supplier to bill them correctly.  
    If others are not paying, then this will likely catch up with them.
  • freeshafreesha Forumite
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    You use it - you should pay for it. It'll catch up with the others eventually.
  • Maybe I should be clearer as some of the comments are not particularly helpful. Out of a poll of approx 60 residents some have been paying since they moved in, some have been charged some time after they moved in (but charges weren't backdated), some are not paying at all.  Interestingly some who were charged since they moved in and have been told they don't need to pay have actually been refunded by South West Water! This is the case for our neighbours even though we are still paying. The argument appears to be that charges aren't due until SWW adopt the sewerage system. Answers such as you use it so you should pay for it are not helpful.
  • CardewCardew Forumite
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    Contact The Consumer Council for Water for their advice. https://www.ccwater.org.uk/households/

  • Grumpy_chapGrumpy_chap Forumite
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    The argument appears to be that charges aren't due until SWW adopt the sewerage system. 
    But you already said above:
    It's main sewerage.  
    Water companies do not "adopt" the sewerage system in the same way that the Council adopts the roads.  The system is built by the developer and then adopted by the sewerage company, but the process is different and happens by default once the new pipes are connected to the public sewer.  Once the network of sewers in the new estate are connected to the public sewer, then the waste water is taken away by the statutory undertaker and treated at their treatment works to make the product suitable for discharge to the environment.  At this point, the fees become due from the householder.

    Unless it is not (yet) a mains sewerage system.  In which case the developer will be intercepting the waste water at some point before it discharges to the public sewer network and, most likely, tankering the waste water away.  In this case, the developer usually seeks to recover the costs from the householders.

    Assuming you are actually receiving waste water services from South West Water (i.e. the pipes are connected), then the charge is due and will eventually be claimed from all householders.

    Why do you think you should be exempt from charges and get away with the service for free?  If you really don't ever want to pay, why not disconnect from the system and manage your own waste flows?

    Not all answers from a public forum will be what you want to hear, which seems to be "of course, it is not right you are being asked to pay for the service you receive"
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