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How to combat the Water Bill rises

This week it was announced that water bills were set to rise again for UK households. While everyone expected this to happen, there will be those wondering why the rise was half a percentage point above the rate of inflation, and not at the rate of inflation.

The new pricing will mean that the average UK household will pay a significant £388 per year for water and sewerage. Those of you living in the South-East of England will experience the biggest rise, calculated at £23 per year, while those living in the South-West will pay the highest average annual amount of £499.

The main reasons behind the inflation-beating rise are focused on improving the infrastructure and reliability of the services provided by water companies, which in the end will mean the benefits are passed on to the customers, according to water and sewerage regulator, Ofwat.

However a rise in the cost of utility bills is something that the vast majority of us could really do without at this time, and fortunately there are some actions you can take in the interest of saving money.

1. Switch to a Water Meter

This is the first thing you must do, as without a water meter you cannot save! Currently there are two ways that you are billed for your water, either by the estimated consumption based on your home, or by the actual amount of water you use.

In the first instance there are some very easy points to consider. Your bill is ‘calculated’ depending on the value of your home. More often than not, the value of a home will be heavily based on the amenities it provides, with the amount of bedrooms a defining factor. This means that the more bedrooms you have, the more your home is likely to be worth, and the higher your water bill is likely to be. So, if you have one or more spare bedrooms, you are likely paying for the water usage of the people who would be living in these rooms. In this case switching to a water meter is a smart idea.

On the other hand, if you have children sharing rooms and no spare rooms, switching to a water meter could potentially cost you more.

BUT, in switching to a water meter, whatever your situation, you can’t really lose. If it turns out you are spending more than before you simply contact your provider within 12 months of installation and ask for it to be removed. You might as well see if you can save.

Switching to a water meter is an easy process, and this guide from Which? gives you all of the information you need.

Once you have a water meter fitted you can then start doing the basics to try and cut down what you are using.

2. Install water saving devices

There are a variety of devices that can be installed in you toilet, shower and taps that can help you to save a huge amount of water. These devices work by limiting the amount of water that is used when flushing the toilet, taking a shower or running the tap. On top of this, some water companies such as Severn Trent give them away for free, meaning there is literally no good reason not to try them.

3. Washing up

How many times have you left the tap running while washing up, or rinsed off all of the plates before putting them in the dishwasher? Doing this will waste water, and this can be avoided. Either run the sink to a good level, without going over the top, or scrape plates clean before putting them in the dishwasher. Also, remember to fill the dishwasher before using it!

4. Having a bath

Baths are nice, but you will end up using considerably more water than you would in a shower. It’s as simple as that.

5. Put in less groundwork

If you have a garden it will likely need watering over the summer months. There are two things you can do to save. One is to simply water it less. Instead of every day, do it every two days or once a week. Also use a water butt. Rain will collect in this and you can fill a watering can directly from it, meaning you will not be paying for any water at all.

6. Get you spanner out

Did you know a dripping tap can waste over 70 litres of water every day? That’s more than 25,000 litres a year. So get it fixed and save money.

None of these are big changes, and should your water provider offer you free water saving devices, doing the above will actually cost you nothing. So give it a try and let us know how you get on.

Of course, if you have any questions about your water bills, or any other household utility bills for that matter, send one of our advisors a question and we will be more than happy to help. Whether you are struggling to pay, would like bill insurance in case you are unable to work, or are simply looking for the best option, we can set you on the right track

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