News

Water bills to shrink 2% for 2015 – 2016 as OFWAT’s price review comes into force.

Author: Graham Mann, Water Audit Expert

The average water and waste water bill across England and Wales is to shrink by 2% as the first year of OFWAT’s PR14 price control comes into force.

What is PR14? Every 5 years OFWAT the water regulator sets price limits that enable water and waste water companies to fund the delivery of water and waste water services to customers in line with the statutory standards. OFWAT will set separate retail and wholesale price control’s for each water and waste water company. The price review is complex, now culminated in price limits for each water and waste water company effective from April 2015.

How will the annual water and waste water bill changed 2015 – 2020? Below are the average water and waste water changes before inflation is added.

Water and waste water company bill changes 2015 - 2020.

Below are the average changes for the water only companies before inflation is added.Water only company bill changes 2015 - 2020.Future investment proposals have been highly scrutinized over the review period with more customer involvement in the price setting process.

Will inflation have any effect on water bills over the period? Its not all good news I am afraid! in real terms water and waste water bills are being reduced, however you need to be aware that the water and waste water companies will be allowed to add in inflation which could mean water bills are still likely to increase.

And what about the water and waste water charges for those served by Thames Water? We are still unclear as to the impact the Thames Tideway Tunnel project will have on water bills within the Thames Water region, which is still yet to be finalised.

Many companies need not worry about increases in the water bill, if they embarked on a project to reduce their water bills future bill increases can in most cases be offset for years to come by partnering with a Water Audit Expert. Simple cost effective solutions are out there which dependant on your water charges could reduce your water and waste water costs by over 30%. Paybacks in most cases measured in a few months or indeed self financing.

With the opening up of the English water retail market to competition April 2017 just around the corner, which we are all making a big deal about (me included) the reality will be a massive bun fight between the water companies in an effort to maintain market share, the discounts will be small so please lower your expectations your companies energy and resources would be better spent focused on gaining control of your water charges now and in the future.