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Water meter or not?

(34 Posts)
workingtitle Wed 19-Jun-13 06:21:37

Dull question I know, but... We've just moved into our new house and it is the first place we've had that doesn't have a meter. I was planning on getting one installed but wondered whether it's actually a good idea with a baby on the way? I guess the only real additional water use will be a few more washing loads per week. Any thoughts?

cavell Wed 19-Jun-13 09:02:28

Rule of thumb is: if there are more bedrooms than there are people in the house, a meter will be cheaper.

AnotherFullTimeDad Wed 19-Jun-13 09:05:00

We're a family of 4 in London (Thames Water) in a decent sized house. Dishwasher, washing machine, 3 loos and 2 bathrooms (although only 1 gets regular use). Showers mostly and occasional baths.

We have a meter and pay about £400 per year. I am pretty sure it works out cheaper than the fixed price.

I think the fixed price has risen sharply over recent years to encourage the switch to meters.

lottiegarbanzo Wed 19-Jun-13 09:10:07

Depends on council tax band. Alone and frugal in a three-bed terrace it was not worth getting a meter, as I was in band A. Two of us in band D, definitely worth it. Plus baby, cost almost doubled, from low starting point - reusable nappies, daily baths, more clothes washing. Still probably worth it, haven't checked.

workingtitle Wed 19-Jun-13 09:19:43

Aha, thank you everyone, this is helpful.
We are band D, and equal number of people to bedrooms (3).

We've always done well out of a meter, but have been relatively low water use previously (no garden, only two of us, no dishwasher, no baby/reusable nappies).

MinimalistMommi Wed 19-Jun-13 09:29:16

We've bought a house which has a metre and I hate it! Family of four in two bed house, it would be better for us not to have a metre sad

In our last house we were metre less for five years and I loved running deep baths, not great for the environment though I know.

Madamecastafiore Wed 19-Jun-13 09:35:36

We moved to a house with 3 more toilets/bathrooms than our previous house and 3 more bedrooms and actually it works out cheaper for us.

(DH proper grumpy bugger about water fights though!)

Mrsladybirdface Wed 19-Jun-13 10:34:27

we've just moved to a house with a meter and I've been worried but it is 50% cheaper than rates (southwest). we are a family of four in a 3 bed. dishwasher and washing machine on every day. 3 showers a day (super long ones from me) and a bath for little one. I've never been so happy add when that bill came in £27 v £55, even if I start to need to water the garden it will still be cheapersmile smile

PNBandJam Wed 19-Jun-13 10:59:23

For us a meter is loads, loads cheaper. When we moved in (4 bed semi) we didn't have one and were being charged £44pcm! I had one fitted. There are 5 of us, we all bathe nightly (sometimes shower), we have dishwasher (which uses lots less than washing up manually), washing machine, a fairly large garden etc. We pay £19pcm to Thames Water. Vastly cheaper on a meter for us.

lottiegarbanzo Wed 19-Jun-13 12:21:52

The hidden implications of a baby, for us, included DH ending his gym membership, me not going swimming and us not going away for weekends as much, so a large reduction in showers-away-from home.

Interesting figures here. We are two adults and a baby, dishwasher runs when full about every other day, washing on most days as reusable nappies, use water butts for garden. We rarely have baths, dd bathes almost daily. Post-baby, bill went from about £23 to £45 a month. Sounds like we could try harder to keep it down.

workingtitle Wed 19-Jun-13 12:28:53

Very interesting to see people's experiences. lottiegarbanzo your experience is kind of what I'm expecting. Rates are very high here (Bath) so I think it's probably going to be worth going on a meter.

Turnipinatutu Wed 19-Jun-13 20:45:00

Our experience is completely the opposite to most of you.
Recently fitted meter and our bill will go from around £365 per year to £1600!!!!!! [Shock]How is this even possible?
Dishwasher on around once a day, washing machine on 3/4 times a week. All have showers, no baths, never water the garden and hardly ever wash the car! Where's it all going?

didireallysaythat Wed 19-Jun-13 21:03:44

3 bed house with meter: £30/month, no meter 4 bed house: £60/month. If we weren't just renting for a short while I'd do something about it.

Does anyone know if water costs significantly less in areas it rains more ? PIL not on meter pay <£150 a year which I don't understand...

workingtitle Wed 19-Jun-13 21:18:13

Turnip, that's mental! Poor you. It sounds odd--can you get them out to investigate?

flow4 Wed 19-Jun-13 21:40:49

Turnip shock - when you say you "all" have showers, I assume you mean you and your 27 children?!

Mrsladybirdface Wed 19-Jun-13 22:29:30

A leak by the sounds of it, get them out quick!

Turnipinatutu Thu 20-Jun-13 08:16:31

Just 4 of us! We've only just got the new metered bill.
Are they responsible for sorting leaks, or will it fall on us?
I have horrible visions of them having to dig up our drive! We've just agreed a sale on our house as well sad
The knock on effects of this could be very bad!

Mrsladybirdface Thu 20-Jun-13 08:43:51

you could check yourself. turn off all the water in the house for a couple of hours and see if the meter is going up. I think you can remove it up to a year after installation, I'd contact the water board asap

SoupDragon Thu 20-Jun-13 09:11:42

I thought that when you move into a house with no meter, the water company comes and fits one whether you want it or not.

MinimalistMommi Thu 20-Jun-13 09:13:33

Soup that's not the case, I think they suggest it and you can say no. Once you've had one fitted on a property though, it can never be reversed.

MinimalistMommi Thu 20-Jun-13 09:14:23

(After one year trial like other poster said, once over that trial it can't be removed.

valiumredhead Thu 20-Jun-13 09:17:27

I miss Thames water, it's so cheapsad

Turnipinatutu Thu 20-Jun-13 09:31:07

I had a look at where the meter is, in the pavement outside. Could only see a small twirly thing going round, so I presume that's it.
I turned off the stop tap in the house and it was still moving.
They're coming out next Wednesday to run some checks, but said it sounds like its leaking between the meter and the house.

Turnipinatutu Thu 20-Jun-13 09:33:06

No chance of removing the meter. They're fitted as standard all through the area now.
Sorry OP, I seem to have hijacked your thread blush

CatherineofMumbles Thu 20-Jun-13 09:39:17

Water meters do make you think about consumption, which is a good thing - think they should be compulsory - I certainly water the garden a lot less now grin
Turnip - it is a misconception that showers use less water than baths, people generally spend a long time in the shower and use much more water than they would in a bath, especially teenagers...

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