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    • MSE Martin
    • By MSE Martin 21st Jun 03, 6:44 PM
    • 8,116Posts
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    MSE Martin
    Water Bills questions and comment
    • #1
    • 21st Jun 03, 6:44 PM
    Water Bills questions and comment 21st Jun 03 at 6:44 PM
    Please place your water bill questions and comments here

    Addition by Fran - link to Martin's article HERE

    Last edited by Fran; 12-02-2005 at 1:08 AM. Reason: add link to water article on main site
Page 2
    • Sarahsaver
    • By Sarahsaver 5th Sep 03, 4:37 PM
    • 8,219 Posts
    • 13,174 Thanks
    Re: Water Bills questions and comment
    I think its true that you can get a reduction if you prove that the water you use does not go back into the mains. What can be done is a sort of reed bed in your garden which is an eco friendly way of cleaning the water, if you put all your waste water through it the water company are not treating it and therefore should charge you less.
    I spose you could keep frogs then ;D
    sorry i dont know more about this but try your local environmental organisations or just ask jeeves if you dont mind all the irrelevant stuff poor old jeeves comes up with !
  • Galstonian
    Re: Water Bills questions and comment
    I get a reduction of about 200 from my council tax bill since we are not connected to the mains sewage system (we have a Victorian soakaway). It should be the same if you have a septic tank or reed beds so long as you are not connected to the sewage system.
    • Sarahsaver
    • By Sarahsaver 5th Sep 03, 5:23 PM
    • 8,219 Posts
    • 13,174 Thanks
    Re: Water Bills questions and comment
    ...but i just had a look and reed beds are expensive...
    although that is admittedly only one site.
    Glastonian, what is a *Victorian soakaway*? as ive never heard of one, some of my drainage is a bit odd to say the least (built 1876) and i dont think that all goes into the mains.
  • Galstonian
    Re: Water Bills questions and comment
    It is like a septic tank but on a permanent basis.

    1. dig a big hole as far as you can from your house.
    2. lay a drain from house into said hole.
    3. use toilets, bath etc and allow nature to take its course (maybe throwing in a pigs head or two to get the bacteria really going well)
    4. cover and leave.

    Bacteria consume the waste and fresh water soaks away through soil. You have to avoid putting stuff in the drains that will upset the balance (avoid bleach and no caustic soda).

    Its the kind of thing that would probably give planners fits if they saw it proposed today but its been working for over 100 years so far so touch wood....
  • timwolffie
    Re: Water Bills questions and comment
    Water comapnies will apply two charges - one set to supply you with the water and one set to take it away again - water charges and sewerage charges. In theory you could remove the sewerage charges if your water isn't routed out of property via the sewer.

    Unfortunately the only ways to economise on your bills are to reduce your usage or move to a meter (which of course may not be the best option) offers a good comparison tool, and indicates what the best option may be (metered or unmetered) - it is always worth talking to your supplier and some do offer varing tariffs based on your usage level.

  • kazjacko
    Re: Water Bills questions and comment
    I have had a major victory with my water bill.
    When I last left a comment, my meter reading had been multiplied by 4.5 which meant the charge for one quarter was 167, which did not seem to show the promise of the great saving compared to water rates.

    However on closer inspection it seems that the 4.5 represented the calculation from gallons to litres. This assumed that the meter reading was for gallons, and therefore needed to be multiplied by 4.5 to show litres. This is strange as we had only had the meter installed this year, when we checked the front of the meter it definately had m3 on it.

    Thames Water have just rang to confirm this, and will reisuue our bill. It should now be around 40, which is much more what I expected.

    Anyone who has had high bills should go and check. It should work out around 1.40 per unit plus whatever you're standing charge is.

  • pakman
    Re: Water Bills questions and comment
    They must be the waters equivilent to British Gaff. !BG get thousands of meters mixed up between metric and imperial.

    (although they will write of any undercharging due to this)

    (if you shout OFGEM loud enough at them) !:P
    • davon
    • By davon 1st Feb 04, 10:39 PM
    • 8 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    Re: Water Bills questions and comment
    When I first moved in, I was on rates and paid around 23 per month for my water. I have since changed to a meter.

    My water bill has now dropped to 9 a month - a huge saving.
  • archived user
    Re: Water Bills questions and comment
    Hi there,

    I have a 2 bed flat and am charged 223 per year to Thames Water for an unmetered supply. This seems alot given that I use very little water.

    I also used to live in a 4 bed house in same area and the water bill was not much more a year. I am slightly confused why.

    Is there any way I reduce my bills?

    • lisyloo
    • By lisyloo 2nd Feb 04, 12:30 PM
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    Re: Water Bills questions and comment
    At the risk of stating the obvious....

    If you use very little water then you will save money by getting a meter fitted.
  • archived user
    Re: Water Bills questions and comment
    Water market deregulation, if it were to happen, would not be the same as Electricity and Gas for one huge reason.

    All the major water companies have a massive problem with unpaid bills, each writing off millions every year.

    With Electric and Gas, if someone doesn't pay, you can at least force a disconnection, or install a prepaymentmeter - and use the courts to attempt to claim the outstanding balance.

    With water, disconnection is ILLEGAL - companies that trialled prepayment meters for water had to withdraw them as customers could cut themselves off.

    Due to the slow time consuming process of going to court over bad debt, by the time an amount is summonsed, a futher amount is due. The debt continually increases, and impoverished families with debts of several thousand can only be made to pay what they can pay - and if a family is not even paying for their current consumption, the debt will continually get bigger.

    Therefore, will companies be jumping up and down for custom in the same way as for electric and gas?? They might in rich, 5 bedroom, detached suburbia, but not want to in the middle of run down estates - and OFWAT would probably not approve of selective or differential tariffs.

    Can't see deregulation happening myself.

    Who knows.

    (used to work for the debt recovery department of a mojor water company)
  • markedgar
    Re: Water Bills questions and comment
    I agree Stuart.

    However, much like the recent news regarding an average 60 increase on annual car insurance premiums to cover the costs associated with incidents involving uninsured drivers, it does beg the question: why are the rest of us (as well as the providers of this and other services, and their associates) bearing the cost of this? In truth, the costs are almost ALWAYS passed back to (unsuspecting), paying consumers.

    While water is, of course, a necessity, if there are individuals out there that really cannot pay, of course we need to help them. No question about that. End of debate.

    My concern is, how true is their 'inability to pay'? I bet many have the usual modern day mod-cons, yet they can't pay for their water?

    Personally, I suspect that when you put aside the genuine cases, there are quite a few that simply play the system (we are all aware of this in other areas) and waste this valuable resource too.

    While this may prove very controversial for many, it does raise an important issue.

    I find it very hard to grasp that anybody living in the UK today does not have - or can find - the ability to pay for such an essential commodity as water. It may not be cheap. Neither is treating it, or maintaining the huge hidden network supplying our water and taking and treating unwanted water waste. It's certainly not free either.

    In addition, metering (even if it proves more expensive) should be a pre-requisite. I have neighbours and relatives that waste water like it's their right to. It's not.

    We can all benefit and certainly start by thinking a bit more about what is best for all, not just the (selfish) individual. Metering water should encourage resourcefulness and why should it not be paid for through volume used? Most other services are billed this way.

    - and why should ordinary people suffer with higher water bills as a result of non-payers?

    Mark E

    Without Prejudice
  • Haggy
    Re: Water Bills questions and comment
    Just a little thought for those reducing their usage of water to cut their bills. Around here, Bournemouth & West Hants water have just been allowed special dispensation to increase everyone's bills above the official limit.

    Why?.....because people have been conserving water and the company hasn't been selling as much!!!!

  • redlakes
    Re: water meter faulty
    I have a water meter, which I noticed as being faulty about one year ago. I noticed that my meter readings were decreasing!!
    When the company read the meter the next quarter, as opposed to me providing the reading, they indicated that I was now several hundred pounds in credit on my statement.
    Now whilst I enjoy having lower bills. I decided to tell them that something wasn't right. They still havent changed the meter, even though I had told them 3 times since May. They have decreased by direct debit by 2/3, due to all the credit on the account.
    Does anyone know where I stand when they do eventually get round to changing the meter? How do they calculate the usage over that time, and can I appeal against an excessive estimate?
    • EMcG
    • By EMcG 11th Feb 04, 1:26 PM
    • 158 Posts
    • 57 Thanks
    Re: Water Bills questions and comment
    Since they have reduced your direct debit to a third of what it was put the remaining 2/3rds in a decent savings account via direct debit. Keep hassling them about the meter - they will fix it eventually and when they do bill you for all the water charges you'll have the money available plus a bit of interest too.

    I have the same problem with with British Gas - they did some work for me last Sept. but still haven't billed me yet. They will eventually and the money for that bill is squirreled way.
  • chicky77uk
    Re: Water Bills questions and comment
    Anglian Water offer a SoLow tariff for people on a water meter.

    If you are a low user you can apply to go onto this rate and you pay no standing charges, just an increased rate per cubic meter for water/sewerage. Its also ideal for anyone with a holiday home - the criteria is that it has to be furnished and used sometimes.

    The threshold for saving with this tariff is 75m3 per year so if your annual usage is less than that then call and get switched over. You can change tariff once a year.

    0800 91 91 55 !8am - 8pm mon to fri
    (please remember call centre agents are people too x)

    Routine bills are usually sent 6 monthly so its easy to work out your consumption. Most folk use more water in the summer so its worth bearing this in mind.

    I would have thought that other water companies offer something similar.

    ps - my dad says only dirty people wash!

    • deanos
    • By deanos 12th Feb 04, 6:42 PM
    • 10,944 Posts
    • 5,604 Thanks
    Re: Water Bills questions and comment
    Anglian Water fit meters for free, you also have 12 months to decide to stay on a meter or go back to rateable value ,its in everybody's intrest to have a go you cant loose !
    • deanos
    • By deanos 12th Feb 04, 6:48 PM
    • 10,944 Posts
    • 5,604 Thanks
    Re: Water Bills questions and comment
    I live alone in a four bedroom house, I have a water meter. When I first moved in two years ago I was charged 18 pounds a month. this was then changed to 29 pounds a month and this year has been changed to 48 pounds a month. I have asked for the meter to be checked but so far this has not happenedalthough Anglia Water have said that they will only charge me the 29 pounds a month for the time being. I do not have a swimming pool.
    first turn your stoptap off under the sink, go outside and look at the meter, if the dial in the middle is moving you have a leak somewhere between the meter and the house, if the meter is not moving turn the internal stoptap back on and make sure nothing in the house is using any water, look at the meter again if it is moving you have a leak inside, AW is responsible for the pipework up to your house, internal pipework is your responsability.
    • lisyloo
    • By lisyloo 12th Feb 04, 6:55 PM
    • 25,523 Posts
    • 13,715 Thanks
    Re: Water Bills questions and comment
    Are you sure about those responsibilities.
    I thought they were responsible for the pipes running to the meter and you were responsible for anything coming from the meter.

    Anyone know for sure?
    • lisyloo
    • By lisyloo 12th Feb 04, 6:59 PM
    • 25,523 Posts
    • 13,715 Thanks
    Re: Water Bills questions and comment
    I've found it here

    responsibility changes at the boundary of the property (that's not the boundary of the house - for example it may include a front garden and private driveway).
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