When you're first moving in to a new house setting up your water bill can be tricky. The Mix reveals all.
Do you pay for your water, or does your landlord/housing association?
You need to find out, stat. Check your tenancy agreement – it should say so there. If your landlord/housing association pays for your water you HAVE to pay them for it, otherwise they can take legal action against you.
Who’s responsible for a water bill in a shared house?
You all are, even if the bill’s in one person’s name. (This also means the moment someone moves out you all become liable for any money they owe.)
Am I on a meter?
You can be charged for water in two ways:
1. By a meter – A water meter measures how much water you use, and charges you accordingly.
2. Assessed volume charge – This is a flat-rate payment based on the size of your home.
Where the hell is my water meter anyway?
It’s usually outside, next to your outdoor stop tap. Your what? Look for a small plastic or metal cover in your driveway or garden. Lift the lid using a screwdriver (or blunt kitchen knife); the meter’s underneath.
How do I set up a water bill?
Take a meter reading on the day you move in then ring your local water company. They’ll talk you through your billing options and set everything up for you.
How do I know what my local water company is? This website is a map of the local companies. Annoyingly, you don’t get a choice of supplier.
What if I don’t pay my water bill?
Water companies can’t disconnect you from your water supply. However, they can get the bailiffs round or even take you to court if you don’t pay up.
I’m poor, can I get help with paying for water?
Ask your water company if they have any special schemes – some have special rates and discounts for people on low income, or who need to avoid debt.
By Holly Bourne
Updated on 11-Jan-2016
Photo by Shutterstock
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