Water Bills to Increase Above Inflation in April

A modern chrome bathroom tap next to a basket of luxury liquids
Author: Samuel Beckingham
Updated: Feb 14, 2024
4 minutes read

Nowadays, it’s a given that prices will go up regardless. With all the wastewater discharged by water companies into rivers and streams, it is a bit harder to swallow that water bills are due to go up again but this time they’ll be higher than the level of inflation.

How Much You’ll Pay

The average bill is set to rise to £473. In England and Wales, a 6% increase is expected, adding £27 to the average annual water bill. Scotland will see a rise of 8.8%, increasing yearly water bills by £36.

This figure is split into an average water bill of £224 and a sewerage bill of £249. Of course, this will differ depending on where in the UK you live. In Scotland, for example, an increase of almost 9% is over double the announced 4% rate of inflation. Welsh Water is an outlier in that it’s actually decreasing its average billing.

You can see how prices compare in the interactive graph below.

It’s important to bear in mind that these figures are estimates, so your actual usage will dictate how much you’ll pay, especially if you’re on a water meter.

Water Companies Are Capped On Increases

At the end of 2023, Ofwat analysed the performance of all water companies across the country. Because of poor performance all round and targets that have been missed, the regulator set a cap to how much bills are allowed to increase.

In actuality, £114 million is being returned to customers through limits in these increases. Only four water companies provided an adequate service and have been permitted to charge their customers more. In 2023, £150 million was returned to customers, despite a 7.5% increase in bills.

A Staggering Level of Investment

Water UK has announced that water companies have set up a £14.4 billion plan for the next financial year (2024/2025) in order to combat the wave of sewage being spilled into clean rivers and seas. Support was given by the regulator to charge customers for this privilege.

“Next year will see record levels of investment from water companies to secure the security of our water supply in the future and significantly reduce the amount of sewage in rivers and seas.”

David Henderson – Chief Executive of Water UK

Despite this record amount to be spent in a single year, it has been emphasised that water companies must ramp up their support for low income households. According to Water UK statistics, more than 2 million households are now receiving help with their water bills.

Playing down these increases, the spin water companies have gone with is that water bills have fallen in real terms over the last 10 years. Come April, the average bill will increase by £2 a month.

With all of this investment, plans are in place to upgrade 2,000km of existing pipework, build 10 new reservoirs and increase the capacity of wastewater treatment works. This will go some way to preventing an unprecedented amount of sewage from being discharged.

Offset These Increases

There are ways that you may be able to reduce your water bill by contacting your water supplier. Alternatively, we’ve got many ways to help you get money back on various products.

Unaffordable Lending

Whether you’ve had a store card or a loan, your lender may have increased your limit without consulting you. Similarly, they may have granted you a loan without the proper checks.

By making an unaffordable claim, you may be able to get 8% simple interest on top of clearing your debt.

Diesel Emissions

Car manufacturers have been under the spotlight for emissions since before the VW dieselgate scandal. With Mercedes the latest carmaker heading to court for diesel emissions, you could be entitled to a payout with your affected vehicle.

Flight Delay

Airlines have some control over disruptions, and if they could have prevented a three hour delay to your flight, you could be due compensation. You can claim up to a massive £520 per passenger with a flight delay claim.