New house - nearly 2 years and no bills

in Water bills
9 replies 1.6K views
I have been chasing United Utilities (UU) for nearly 2 years now regading a water meter for my new house. It is a new build by Miller Homes and they have told me it is my responsibility to sort it out with UU.

I have made numerous phonecalls and recently decided to put it in writing to them in July. Nearly a month later I receive a phonecall telling me that they have it in hand and that it was previously marked as a damaged recepticle for the meter so they had not fitted it.

The lady said it was their fault it had not been fitted and that it should be addressed shortly.

I asked (as I did in my letter) about back charges for the water - after all I am a reasonable man (sometimes) and I have indeed been using water that I should pay for. What I do not want is a hefty bill for estimated usage since I got in the property.

She replied that they would estiamte the usage based upon the occupancy of the house and that someone would be in touch regarding this.

Ok - you may argue that I should have budgeted to pay my water based upon a figure that that seemed reasonable from what I was paying at a previous house and kept the money aside for the day that the bill comes, but real world scenario and money gets spent no matter what the good intentions. I should note that during one of my phonecalls last year I offered to set up a direct debit to pay a budget amount but was informed they could not do this.

My question (rather than continued rambling) is what is my liability, was there not a case where British Gas was limited to the amount it could backcharge and would the same apply to UU?

Also my main bone of contention is responsibilty - I have chased and chased for this to be resolved and it was only my somewhat snotty letter that got a proper response. Whilst I appreciate I have to pay - should they not concede a certain percentage due to their responsibilty. If they don't is it worth fighting my corner? Has anyone else had a similar circumstance.

I appreciate any comments on the above.

Thanks

Replies

  • UU are complete a**Holes

    Had lots of trouble with them in the past.

    They have a Monopoly and they know it!
    I have a empty house, wrote and told them but they don't have the letter. went to house yesterday and got a court summons, not been to house for over a month.

    It's not fair having to pay poll tax on a empty house nevermind the damn water!

    I did pay some of the bill and then left all the taps on in the house to compensate for charging me for an empty property!

    I hope they run out of water, with their bad attitude they deserve it!
  • Crikey - they are not your best friends at UU then?

    I sympathise with your frustration with them. I hope you were kidding about leaving the taps on - but I suppose with the amount of leakage out of the network they are hardly going to miss it anyway.
  • CardewCardew Forumite
    28.9K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper Rampant Recycler
    Forumite
    Rather than anticipating a problem that might not occur, perhaps you should wait and see what they charge.

    As they have conceded it is their fault perhaps they won't even charge for the past couple of years - or they will give a reasonable figure that you are happy to accept. You would have strong grounds to dispute any unreasonable figure through OFFWAT and I suspect they would compromise rather than have their error brought to notice.
  • UU are complete a**Holes

    Had lots of trouble with them in the past.

    They have a Monopoly and they know it!
    I have a empty house, wrote and told them but they don't have the letter. went to house yesterday and got a court summons, not been to house for over a month.

    It's not fair having to pay poll tax on a empty house nevermind the damn water!

    I did pay some of the bill and then left all the taps on in the house to compensate for charging me for an empty property!

    I hope they run out of water, with their bad attitude they deserve it!
    i thought if you were not living in a property you didnt pay council tax if you move your stuff out.second point can you get meter put in for water you only pay for what you use.that way you use no water no charge.its wrong you sould have to pay.
    :j
  • GeoggyGeoggy Forumite
    494 Posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker
    blimey blimeytrousers

    hi there.

    meet me. i went through 100% the same thing as you with guess who...

    a new Miller Home and United Utilities.

    And guess what - get ready to pay large direct debits to cover your back usage.

    Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but as i said i went through the same thing - chased them for a meter etc etc. Went on for 12 months and then one day out of the blue a bill arrived.

    I dashed outside and lo and behold a meter had been installed whilst I was at work.

    Been paying £25 a month for water ever since. Only now (after being in the house for 4 years) are we in "credit" on our account.

    Good luck.
  • Thanks for the replies ...

    Cardew - Thanks for the reply. I always prepare for the worst and expect the best - anticipating problems usually gives me a headstart. Just a way of life I suppose.

    Geoggy - Yes I expected as much, thanks for your reply. I will be prepared for the response and I will try as Cardew suggested to perhaps bring it to the attention of the regulator.

    Like I say, I am always willing to pay for anything I use but it rankles me when companies have to be chased to do their own job and then still try and charge you full whack for it. An acceptance of responsibility is all I will be aiming at.
  • CardewCardew Forumite
    28.9K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper Rampant Recycler
    Forumite
    Geoggy wrote:
    blimey blimeytrousers

    hi there.

    meet me. i went through 100% the same thing as you with guess who...

    a new Miller Home and United Utilities.

    And guess what - get ready to pay large direct debits to cover your back usage.

    Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but as i said i went through the same thing - chased them for a meter etc etc. Went on for 12 months and then one day out of the blue a bill arrived.

    I dashed outside and lo and behold a meter had been installed whilst I was at work.

    Been paying £25 a month for water ever since. Only now (after being in the house for 4 years) are we in "credit" on our account.

    Good luck.

    £25 a month for water for 3 years(to cover 4 years use) hardlly qualifies as large direct debits. - £225 pa. less if you count your 'credit'

    If you look through the thread on what people pay on a meter you will see that is probably below average bill.
  • i thought if you were not living in a property you didnt pay council tax if you move your stuff out.second point can you get meter put in for water you only pay for what you use.that way you use no water no charge.its wrong you sould have to pay.

    Hi Barbie babe

    Apparently the law changed last year and now you are only allowed a exemption for paying council tax for the first 6 months, after that you have to pay it!

    I wasn't very happy about this as I was paying the outgoings on 2 houses for over 12 months. The house is almost sold now and I stand to make £70,000
    But I still don't agree with having to pay council tax on a empty house! It is wrong.

    The really annoying thing is that to earn the money to pay the £1000 per year council tax bill you have to earn £1300 as you have to pay tax and national insurance on it!

    RIP OFF BRITAIN!!!!!
  • Al_MacAl_Mac Forumite
    5.5K Posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker
    Took five years to get my water meter, the house was built just as they became mandatory, they didn't charge for any water used, just some other charges, was quite happy about that, having just had second child and water consumption had gone throught the roof.:eek:
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