For more information on the Customer Metering Programme visit www.makingeverydropcount.co.uk.
Below are some frequently asked questions about this change.
- Why do I receive bills from two water companies?
- You receive two bills because the water and wastewater services to your property are supplied by two different companies, South East Water for water services and Southern Water for sewerage services. However, it doesn't mean that you're being charged any more than you should be.
South East Water provide us with all the information we need to bill your metered wastewater charges.
- How will you bill now that I have a meter?
- As your wastewater service provider we'll also bill you on metered charges from now on and to do this South East Water will supply us with meter readings for your property.
We'll receive readings every six months from South East Water once you've been switched to metered charges and our bill will follow shortly after.
We'll write to you once we've received this information. In the meantime, please continue to pay your unmetered charges. We'll transfer any credits or debits to your new metered account.
- How will I be billed if South East Water cannot fit a meter?
- South East Water tell us its assessment of the annual volume of water it supplies to your home so that we can calculate your assessed sewerage charges.
The volume charge for the sewerage service is based on 92.5% of the assessed volume of water supplied to you by South East Water. This is to reflect the fact that not all the water you use returns to the sewer.
To calculate the volume charge we multiply your assessed water volume (in cubic metres) by 92.5%, then multiply the resulting assessed volume of sewage by the metered sewerage volume.
For more information, please see our charges guide for South East Water customers.
- How do you charge for metered wastewater?
- Volumetric charges
The water meter installed by South East Water measures how much water is used in cubic metres (one cubic metre = 1,000 litres or 219 gallons). We cannot measure the water returned to the sewer, and therefore we base our wastewater charges on the meter readings provided to us.
The charge is worked out on the basis that 92.5 per cent of water used goes into the sewers. The remaining water may be used in the garden or for drinking water.
For example, if South East Water bills you for 100 cubic metres of water used, we would bill you for 92.5 cubic metres.
As well as the charges for your usage, your bill also includes standing charges. There are certain costs that we incur regardless of how much customers use our services. These include, the cost of sending bills, collecting payments and dealing with enquiries.
The standing charges that we make cover these costs. They are split between wastewater drainage, surface water drainage and highway drainage.
- How can I claim the surface water drainage rebate?
- If the surface water from your property goes to a soakaway and none of it enters the public sewers, then you can claim a rebate for the current charging year onwards.
To claim a rebate call 0330 303 1266 and record your details, or alternatively complete our online form. Once your claim has been agreed you will automatically receive the rebate each year, although it cannot be backdated to earlier years.
- I pay by instalments – how will you know how much to reset the payments at?
- We cannot assess the level of your payments accurately until we've received your first meter reading and know how much water you're using, therefore we'll initially reset your payments at your current unmetered amount. The instalment amount will be reassessed when we receive the first meter reading.
If you're not already paying by Direct Debit, you can set one up by completing our online form.
- I pay annually or six monthly for my unmetered charges – how will metered charges affect me?
- South East Water will take meter readings every six months. These reads will be passed to us automatically and our bill will follow afterwards.
Our metered bills are for six months worth of services provided to you, therefore payment is due on receipt of the bill.
You can make payment by half yearly Direct Debit, or at a bank or Post Office. If you already pay by Direct Debit, we'll continue to take payments from your account after the bill has been issued.
- I've applied for one of its financial support tariffs. Will you also provide reduced wastewater charges?
- If you choose or are eligible for either of these, we'll apply the tariff to your wastewater charges in exactly the same way. You do not need to contact us as it will do that on your behalf.
- I have a problem with my meter.
- Your new water meter is owned by South East Water. Any queries concerning the meter or the meter readings should be referred to them. You can call South East Water on 0333 000 0003.