Should You be Switching to a Water Meter?

Tap Water

Should You be Switching to a Water Meter?

To meter, or not to meter? Trying to save money on your water bill is a tricky process. Water is privatised, but unlike gas & electric, there aren’t numerous suppliers to choose from when trying to get the best deal.

So, your options are:

A. You pay for what you use, or
B. You pay a standard fixed bill (based on the size of your property)

There are several things to consider when deciding between these two payment methods, so keep reading in order to make the most informed choice and hopefully save some of that precious student loan!

Consider how many people you live with

Generally it’s worth at least checking out a water meter if there are less people than bedrooms in your property. If there are only two of you in a four bedroom house for instance, you definitely do not want to be charged based on the property’s size… Unless you each plan on taking about two baths a day! There is no point in paying a fixed rate if your consumption is going to be significantly lower, as you’d basically be pouring money down the drain (excuse the pun).

Preparing for Bills

One down-side to using a meter is that your bills may well fluctuate from month to month. It’s hard to predict a precise showering routine or bath-allowance for the foreseeable future, and you need to ensure that you’re always able to pay your water bill on time. With a fixed rate you can be prepared each month, and relax a little in the knowledge that it doesn’t matter if you have a few extra baths or long showers!

How long are you Living at the Property?

If you’re renting for less than 6 months, you’d have to ask your landlord/lady’s permission in order to get a meter installed. If there’s a disagreement it could take subsequent months to resolve, which just isn’t worth it for such a short-term lease. The process should be more straightforward for those renting for an academic year, but do make sure that you’ve consulted the water board about the estimated price differences, as it may not be worth the effort and could even be more expensive if your water use is above average.

If you’re still in Two Minds…

Don’t worry! If after all this careful consideration you think you do want to get a meter installed, you can just give it a go. You’re within your rights to switch back up to a year later, so relax and don’t rule anything out straight away. When it comes to saving money, students are fully entitled to explore all their options!