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Thames Water - what should it cost?

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Hi, I'm hoping someone can help.

 

I am supplied by Thames Water, living in a one-bedroom flat on my own. Based on this basic information, I am paying £20 a month for my water.

 

Having used the Consumer Council for Water calculator, it seems it should be more like £13 a month.

 

I cannot have a meter as my flat is the upstairs of a converted terrace house and there is nowhere for the meter to go (they've been out to check).

 

From what I've read, I can't challenge the rateable value set in 1989 - despite the fact that the house was converted into flats in 1989 and possibly my rateable value applies to the HOUSE ... not my flat.

 

Is there anything I can do to see about reducing my water bill?? I am on the single occupier rate.

 

Thanks

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Sometime ago I received what I considered to be an excessive bill from my water supplier, Southern Water (approx. £500 per annum for two working professionals in a 2 bed flat!). I contested it, and, when that came to naught, ordered them to install a meter.

 

Like you, they sent out a chap who found - through no fault of ours - that my property (2 bedroom flat) was unable to take a meter due to the layout of the building. I was informed that Southern Water would have to recalculate.

 

Naturally, Southern Waster didn't do anything, so I sent an email pointing out their obligations and suggesting they may like to think about doing something about them.

 

I today received an email back from them, stating, in part, that:

 

"Since the introduction of the Water Industry Act 1999, we are able to offer an assessed charge to customers who cannot have a meter, provided that they do not use a sprinkler or other type of unattended garden watering device. This assessed charge is based on the number of bedrooms in your property and provides you with a reduction in your water services charges.

 

We have transferred your charges from the date of your survey, 9th June 2009. Charges will now be raised yearly in advance based on 2 bedrooms which will be billed using an assessed usage of 90 cubic meters per annum. This equates to £287.11 at current year prices assuming you take full wastewater services from us."

 

The point being, if you've also had a check and found your meter cannot be fitted, you should be similarly entitled to a discount from your supplier. It's worth sending Thames Water an email, possibly pointing out that you believe they are obliged to offered you an assessed charge under the Water Industry Act 1999, and see what they respond with.

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Sometime ago I received what I considered to be an excessive bill from my water supplier, Southern Water (approx. £520 per annum for two working professionals in a 2 bed flat!). I contested it, and, when that came to naught, ordered them to install a meter.

 

Like you, they sent out a chap who found - through no fault of ours - that my property (2 bedroom flat) was unable to take a meter due to the layout of the building. I was informed that Southern Water would have to recalculate.

 

Naturally, Southern Waster didn't do anything, so I sent an email pointing out their obligations and suggesting they may like to think about doing something about them.

 

I today received an email back from them, stating, in part, that:

 

"Since the introduction of the Water Industry Act 1999, we are able to offer an assessed charge to customers who cannot have a meter, provided that they do not use a sprinkler or other type of unattended garden watering device. This assessed charge is based on the number of bedrooms in your property and provides you with a reduction in your water services charges.

We have transferred your charges from the date of your survey, 9th June 2009. Charges will now be raised yearly in advance based on 2 bedrooms which will be billed using an assessed usage of 90 cubic meters per annum. This equates to £287.11 at current year prices assuming you take full wastewater services from us."

 

So that's a drop from £520 to £280; getting on for half of what we would have paid.

 

If you've also had a check and found your meter cannot be fitted, you should be similarly entitled to a discount from your supplier. It's worth sending Thames Water an email, possibly pointing out that you believe they are obliged to offered you an assessed charge under the Water Industry Act 1999, and see what they respond with.

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Thanks tezcatlipoca. I believe that's what I'm on with the single occupier rate, but it certainly won't hurt to ask the question.

 

I wouldn't mind so much if I was taking baths every night and doing half a dozen loads of washing every week. But I'm SO careful with my water usage ... only flushing the toilet when I need to (sorry about that mental image), I don't have a dishwasher, no garden to water, work full-time so am not there most of the time etc etc.

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