Average household water and wastewater bill will fall by almost £50 this year

Southern Water’s average household water and waste water bill will fall by almost £50 this year 

Our average combined bill for water and wastewater treatment services is set to fall by 11.2 per cent for 2020-21. 

A typical combined bill for a domestic customer is expected to be £391 compared with an average charge of £440 last year – meaning a day’s services will cost only £1.07 a day – less than most bus fares. The cost is 13p a day or £49 a year less than last year. 

The water element of bills is almost flat – the expected average is £159 compared with £156 in 2019-20. Wastewater bills will fall by an average £52 including a rebate of around £20 attributable to the company’s final settlement with Ofwat.

The big drop in bills comes at the start of a sustained fall in combined bills. Between 2020 and 2025 bills will fall by 18.4 per cent (adjusted for inflation). By 2025 the average household bill for water and wastewater will be just £343 a year. Water bills will fall 8 per cent during that time while wastewater bills will fall 24 per cent. 

Starting a new era 

Ian McAulay, Southern Water chief executive said: 

“Water is essential to every aspect of our lives but it is under increasing pressure from population growth and climate change. So water companies have got to work even harder to face these challenges and keep it flowing far into the future whilst delivering the services our customers want and deserve. 

Our customers have said they want us to do more to protect the environment and increase biodiversity, that’s why over the next 5 years our ‘Water for Life’ business plan will invest £4 billion into our region, generating jobs and protecting the environment whilst ensuring we keep bills affordable and support those in need.” 

Where your money goes  

Southern Water's bills cover the day-to-day running costs of supplying customers with high-quality drinking water and taking away and treating their wastewater. In addition they support our investments including such major projects as the £100 million Havant Thicket reservoir we are funding in our neighbour Portsmouth Water’s area. 

Our spending includes renewal and expansion of water mains and sewers, along with schemes to help prevent flooding, protect water supplies, reduce leakage, improve water quality, protect the environment and enhance wastewater treatment. 

Key Investments include: 

  • A new £27.5 million five year phase of the Bathing Water Enhancement Programme which has helped to raise 58 out of the region’s 83 bathing waters to the “Excellent” standard.

  • We will be commissioning our £100 million investment in rebuilding the Woolston wastewater treatment works

  • Construction of the £15 million Chichester pipeline to support growth in the region.

Extra help where it’s needed 

We believe our services are great value at just over a pound a day for water and wastewater services but we know that some people can occasionally struggle to pay their bills or need some extra help in other ways. 

Rachel Ryan-Crisp, Southern Water’s Vulnerability Lead, says: “There are many people out there that don’t even know that these services exist and for an array of reasons whether they struggle to pay or require more support from their supplier. We can assist and offer extra care to a range of people such as those living with long-term illness, disability, the elderly and even new parent or parents with young children. Help us to help you by getting in touch for advice or by spreading the word to friends and family who could benefit.” 

More details about our tariff schemes can be found here https://www.southernwater.co.uk/account/help-paying-your-bill

Learn about our priority services register here:


 Notes to Editors:

  • Southern Water’s bills for 2020-21 are down 11.2 per cent before an inflation figure of CPIH of 1.5 per cent in December 2019 is taken into account. This means the real drop is 12.7 per cent

  • The forecast weighted average household bills for 2020-21 are:

  1. Water        £159 (a change of plus £3 or 1.8 per cent)

  2. Wastewater         £232 (a drop of £52 or 18.3 per cent)

  3. Combined           £391 (a drop of £49 or 11.2 per cent)

  • As part of the final settlement with Ofwat over misreporting of data between 2010 and 2017 we are making rebates to customers. Of the £52 reduction in wastewater charges, £20 is attributable to repayments.