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How Does Business Water Billing Work?


Updated: 24/04/2023

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There are many things that you have to learn very quickly as a business owner. Between business energy bills and water bills, there’s the potential to lose a lot of money. However, understanding everything you need to know about your business premise can take up hours of precious time.

In this article, we’re going to quickly run through everything you need to know about business water billing including a few tips that could potentially save you a lot of money!

How Do Ofwat Regulate Business Water Billing?

Before we look at how water bills are calculated, it is worth mentioning that all business water is regulated by the Water Services Regulation Authority, Ofwat. 

Some of the rules that companies must follow when setting their water bills include ensuring that larger water users prices are still fair and adjusting water and sewerage charges each year.

How Are Water Bills Calculated?

Non-household company or business water bills are calculated based on both the quantity of clean water used, and the amount of wastewater produced by the business. You can understand more about your business water bills by considering the following: 

  • Businesses that have a water meter pay a standing charge which is based on the size of the meter and a charge per cubic meter of water used. 
  • If you do not have a water meter, your charges will be calculated based on a fixed rate plus an estimated variable charge that is based on factors such as previous usage and property size. 

All water companies have slightly different charges for businesses (or non-household companies) for their water and sewerage. You can find out who your supplier is by checking your most recent bill or calling any water retailer. 

Wastewater charges, which can occasionally come from a separate provider, are calculated through consideration of the volume of wastewater typically produced on the property and the strength of the trade effluent. Trade effluent is liquid waste other than surface water and domestic sewage. 

Wastewater charges cover the treatment and collection of different types of wastewater. This includes surface water, foul sewage, highways drainage and trade effluent. 

Water companies have a range of approaches to calculating charges for highways and surface water drainage; businesses that can prove they don’t produce any of these types of wastewater may be able to apply for a reduction in their bills.

Finding Hidden Charges With Your Business Water

Highways and surface water drainage charges are one example of hidden charges that you might not need to pay as a business. 

Charges can also be higher than necessary if you don’t have a meter and don’t update the water company on your actual water usage. 

The main way in which charges can creep up is by not looking around for the best business water deal. 

Switching suppliers can save you a lot of money on your business water bills by allowing you to find a deal more tailored to your needs.  

If you are in England or Scotland, you can find the latest business water deals by using our business water comparison service.

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