Get help with paying your bill

This article outlines a number of different payment/assistance schemes.

If you need help with paying your bill, there are a number of different payment/assistance schemes available that might help you balance your household budget.

Our customer service advisers will make sure you receive help that best suits your individual needs.

We may be able to help you:

  • Spread the cost of your bills
  • Pay us directly from your benefits
  • Repay debt and get back on track
  • Lower your water bills
  • Save money and water with a meter


Payment choices

We can make short-term changes to your payments if you find yourself in financial difficulties or we can look at having your payments come directly out of your benefits.

1. Flexible payment plans

How can it help? – If short-term help is required, we are able to offer flexibility in payments to support short term financial difficulty. Customers can pay less than they need to towards their water bill for an agreed period and catch up on payments later.

Who qualifies? – Customers who find themselves in short-term financial difficulty.

How to apply? – If you are having difficulties, we would recommend you approach an independent agency such as the CAB or StepChange to receive financial advice.  If you need a short term flexible payment plan to help you through a crisis or whilst you reorganise your finances, they will refer you to our Social Policy Team who can help set up a plan.

2. Water Direct

How can it help? – You can have your water bill payments come directly from your benefits. The amount you pay each week is worked out to cover the bill for the year and a small amount towards any debt.

Who qualifies? – Customers in debt with their water bill and in receipt of one of these benefits: income support, income-based job seekers allowance, employment and support allowance, pension credit or universal credit.

How to apply? – To pay this way, please contact customer services.

Call: 0345 600 3 600 (Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm) or Email: customer.services@bwbsl.co.uk


Debt management

Restart

How can it help? – A two-year payment plan designed to cover your current usage and some of your debt. If all year one payments are met, at the end of the year we reduce the debt by an equivalent amount.  In year two, if you continue to pay your current year charges, we will clear your remaining debt, and you will be back on track.

Who qualifies? – Customers in significant water debt but are able to cover their annual charges. Restart can be used alongside Assist and WaterSure Plus.

How to apply? – To apply, you need to seek independent debt advice. Visit the Money Advice West website to find out which charity is nearest to you or call them on 0800 138 3422. Alternatively, you can contact the following:

Online and telephone advice:

 

Face to face advice:

 

In addition, you will also need to complete the Help With Your Bill form.


Social Tariffs

These consider your ability to pay and look to reduce your bill where possible.

They also consider vulnerable customers or low-income households and look to put a limit on the amount you pay.

Social Tariffs are also available to those on Pension Credits.


Don't qualify but still need help with your water bill?

If none of the above seem suitable then there a number of other ways in which we can help you with your bill.

Metering

How can it help? – Switching to a meter can reduce water bills if usage is low and the rateable value of the property is high. If you decide within two years that metering is not for you, you can switch back to your current charges.

Who qualifies? – Most customers can have a meter installed although it is not possible to meter customers who have a shared supply or usually customers that live in flats.  Not sure if a meter is right for you?  Try CCWater’s calculator to see if it will save you money.

You can apply for a water meter by filling our online form or contacting customer services.

Call: 0345 600 3 600 (Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm) or

Email: customer.services@bwbsl.co.uk

Metering help – if you already have a water meter we offer advice on how to save water and money. You can order free water-saving devices from the Save Water Save Money website.

If you are not sure whether switching to a meter would be beneficial for you, you can find out more, visit our dedicated page to metering.

Need a little more help...

You'll be surprised by how making small changes to your life can result in a big reduction in the amount of water you use.

If you're struggling to do something then why not look through our help on stop taps and other content related elements.