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Average water bills to rise to £389 a year

Written by: Paloma Kubiak
Average household water bills across England and Wales are set to rise by £2 to £389 from 1 April 2016, Water UK has announced.

However, not all customers will see their bills rise as the price you pay for your water will depend on your supplier and whether you have a water meter.

Water companies are able to set their own charges for customers, but the amount they charge is subject to the regulator’s (Ofwat) approval.

So while Northumbrian North East customers will see bills rise by £7, Southern Water and Sewerage customers will see bills fall by 2% (£7) on average.

For water-only companies, customers of Dee Valley will be hit with a 5% increase (£7), while those who come under South Staffordshire and Sutton and East Surrey will see the biggest fall of 2%, a reduction of £2.

In Scotland, water and sewerage prices are based on council tax bands. Again, average prices are set to increase by 1.6% (£5), taking the average bill to £351.

The increase in England and Wales is in line with the five-year plan developed by every water and sewerage company, subject to Ofwat’s approval.

Water companies plan to invest £44bn over the next five years and meet the following targets:

  • Saving 370 million litres of water a day by tackling leakage and promoting efficiency
  • 32% reduction in the time that interruptions affect the supply of water
  • 33% fewer properties flooded by wastewater from sewers.

All water and sewerage companies have committed to help those struggling to pay their bills and from this summer, they’re expected to introduce social tariffs.

Michael Roberts, Water UK chief executive, said: “For just over £1 a day, households across the country can have access to high quality water services day and night. The supply of clean water at the turn of a tap, together with wastewater treatment services, provides the lifeblood of the nation and the foundation for our health and well-being. Water companies understand the pressures on customers’ pockets and are committed to keeping household bills as low as possible while still investing in vital improvements.”

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