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Household water and sewerage bills for 2017-18

Press release
Water charges
1 February 2017
Senior Couple drinking water

The average household water and sewerage bill in England and Wales for 2017-18 will be £395 - an increase of £6 (2%) compared with the previous year.

The average bills for each company can be found on the Discover Water website, which brings together key information for customers about water companies in England and Wales.

The prices for 2017-18 are in line with the 5-year plans developed by every water and sewerage company after extensive consultation with customers, and confirmed by the industry regulator Ofwat in 2014.

Those plans will see companies deliver a 5% average drop in real terms in prices between 2015-2020. Over that period, water and sewerage companies will also invest £44bn in better services, greater resilience and environmental improvements. Their tough targets include:

  • saving 370 million litres of water a day by tackling leakage and promoting efficiency
  • 32% reduction in the time interruptions affect the supply of water
  • 33% fewer properties flooded by wastewater from sewers

As well as investing in services during this period, water companies continue to increase the support for customers needing help with their bills. It is expected that companies will have assisted around 1.8 million customers by the end of the decade.

Almost all water companies now have social tariffs in place, which help reduce the bills of low-income households, sometimes by as much as 90 per cent. All water companies provide a package of other measures worth more than £40 million a year to support customers who are struggling to pay or in debt, including working with partners to provide debt and financial advice.

Michael Roberts, Water UK Chief Executive, said: "Water companies are fully committed to delivering great customer service and keeping household bills as low as possible. This year, details on bills in England and Wales are being published alongside information on how water companies are performing.

"We hope this will both inform the on-going conversations about priorities between companies and their customers, and provide a signpost to the help available from each water company for those households who genuinely struggle to pay."

Discover Water

Water UK Communications
0207 344 1805

Notes to Editors

  1. Companies decide each year the level at which they will set charges for customers, making sure they do not exceed the overall revenue that Ofwat has allowed them in its final determinations.
  2. Companies are allowed to add the RPI rate of inflation to the wholesale element of their bills on an annual basis. The inflation figure used this year is 2.2% - the Retail Price Index (RPI) annual inflation in November 2016, as released by the Office of National Statistics in December 2016.
  3. Customer satisfaction with the value for money of water services has increased from 74% in 2014 to 76% in 2015. (CCWater research - Water Matters: Household customers' views on their water and sewerage services 2015, published June 2016).
  4. All water and sewerage companies have their own variety of schemes to help customers struggling to pay their water and sewerage bills. There is more information on Discover Water about helping people pay their bills.
  5. Since privatisation in 1990 the water industry has invested in excess of £130 billion on new facilities and infrastructure as well as upgrading and modernising key installations and pipe and sewer networks.
  6. The current investment programme ensures water companies will continue to help provide essential infrastructure and support a wide range of jobs in every region to spur growth. Overall, the UK water industry contributes at least £15bn to the UK economy each year.
  7. Average bills for each company are shown in the annual bill section of Discover Water. There is also a table showing the changes here.