Business Water Prices & Rates

Business water prices and rates

As of April 2017, business owners in England will be able to switch their water supplier, much in the same way that they currently switch their gas and electricity supplier. This change means that we could soon see an increase in competition and a decrease in prices as business water suppliers operate more in line with regulations similar to the deregulated Scottish water market. Scotland was the first country in the world to deregulate their water market, and have subsequently seen an improvement in delivery and customer service, as well as a notable increase in customer savings.

Large business owners in England may be familiar with this system, as any company that uses more than 5 million litres (5 megalitres) of water at any one site has some degree of choice about their supplier for some time now.

So, if you’re a small business owner, here’s all you need to know on water provision and how your water costs are calculated.

How are water costs calculated for business?

As a business owner, you’ll need to pay for any water your business uses, which includes everything from the water used when employees wash their hands, to any used to fill up the kettle in the canteen.

Your water bill is made up of three elements:

  • Water charge- This applies to the supply of clean water to your premises and is charged based on the volume of water you use
  • Waste water charge- This covers the cleaning and maintenance of the water that goes down your drains
  • Sewerage and drainage charge – This covers the cost of collecting and treating rain water and bringing back into the water system. Sewerage and drainage charge is made up of two elements:
    1. Road drainage - This is your contribution to collecting the water that runs off public roads
    2. Property charge-This is for the rainwater that drains off your property
  • Trade Affluent charge - If your business deals with harmful or toxic waste then you will be charged separately for this.

In addition to your water and waste water usage, you will also be charged:

  • A set charge if you have a water meter

Or,

  • A set amount based upon the value of your property if you don’t have a water meter.

Please note: if your business uses a large amount of water, it may be eligible for a reduction in rates by way of a large user tariff.

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