Overestimated Start Read

I purchased my home in January and knew I had a water meter but couldn't locate it. I tried to call Welsh Water to ask them to read the meter but at the time they weren't sending people out due to Covid and this was displayed on their website. They eventually sent someone in October, but he couldn't find the meter either. We've been backwards and forwards since then on various calls etc, but long story short I found the meter today. It was completely buried and grassed over, so no way it could be seen - I've just basically dug up all along the front garden until I found it.

So, I can now see that the start read must have been over-estimated, as the difference between the start read and current read is only 31m3  :D I am a low user anyway as I'm super careful and I'm on my own, but clearly not that low. I want to pay fairly, I'm not after a freebie but I'm worried they are going revise the start figure to meet what they think I would have used and then I end up overpaying because I'm very careful with my usage. 

Does anyone know what they are likely to do?

Just to note - they say they haven't read the meter for years, I'm guessing they couldn't find it in all that time

£12k in 24 #14 £4571.63/£23k 23 #14 £17,195.80/£18k 22 #20 £23,024.86/£23k
    Debt Free January 2021

    Comments

    • If the previous owner/tenant has agreed the closing reading (the opening reading shown on your statement) then you should not be back billed.

      Water companies usually send out a meter reader once every 6 months. As your present reading is higher than the opening reading then I doubt that the water company will bat an eyelid; however, going forward you may find that your monthly payment is less than it needs to be to cover future usage.
    • QrizB
      QrizB Posts: 13,665
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      edited 16 December 2021 at 4:34PM
      Give them your reading and see what they say. I don't know about Welsh Water but Southern Water will let you enter readings on their website and will re-calculate your bill accordingly.
      There's four of us and we use around 120m3 a year, so 31m3 for you on your own isn't really that low!
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    • Van_Girl
      Van_Girl Posts: 365
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      The previous owner died, and given the amount of mail I receive from utility companies etc in their name, I'm not sure anything was finalised/agreed. I return it all to sender. 

      Good point on the payments though, the direct debit is currently a bit higher than I paid at the previous property so I'll keep it the same until I can calculate what my actual usage is going to be. 

      Hopefully they won't back bill and we can just get it sorted going forward. I suppose I'm worried as I've made a real fuss to them about the meter and not being charged unfairly, that they might flip it around on me  :D
      £12k in 24 #14 £4571.63/£23k 23 #14 £17,195.80/£18k 22 #20 £23,024.86/£23k
        Debt Free January 2021
      • Van_Girl
        Van_Girl Posts: 365
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        QrizB said:
        Give them your reading and see what they say. I don't know about Welsh Water but Southern Water will let you enter readings on their website and will re-calculate your bill accordingly.
        There's four of us and we use around 120m3 a year, so 31m3 for you on your own isn't really that low!
        I just calculated it roughly, and it works out at £20 a month all in so you're right, it's actually not that low. It just looks it compared to what they've been estimating!

        If I can just make sure my usage actually does align with that (or less) I will be happy :)
        £12k in 24 #14 £4571.63/£23k 23 #14 £17,195.80/£18k 22 #20 £23,024.86/£23k
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