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Proposed changes to water and wastewater for some Circle Housing customers

Customer FAQ: Proposed changes to water and wastewater for some Circle Housing (specifically formerly Circle 33), Old Ford and Merton Priory customers.

If you received a letter from us dated the 3 January, we were writing to you to let you know about some proposed upcoming changes to the way you pay for water and wastewater services in the future. If this change goes ahead it will start from 1 April 2017.

Currently Thames Water, who provide you with your water and wastewater service, charges Circle Housing for this provision. We then recharge you for this service via your rent account. We are proposing that from 1 April 2017 this will change - we will no longer include water and wastewater services as part of your rent account. Instead, Thames Water will send you a separate bill, and you will pay them directly for this service. Please note this is only for your water and wastewater service.

We would like to hear your comments and concerns about this proposed change. Please contact our Customer Contact Centre on 0300 333 5000 or merton_income@circle.org.uk on or before the 3 February 2017. 

Why is this being proposed?

Circle Housing and Thames Water, your water and wastewater service provider, have worked together for many years under the terms of an agreement, meaning your water and wastewater charges were collected by Circle Housing within your rent account.

As your landlord, Circle is proposing to change the way residents will pay for water and wastewater services in the future. If implemented, these changes will start from 1 April 2017. We believe it would be simpler and more transparent for you if your water and waste water charges are billed to you directly. We are proposing that Circle Housing stop collecting you water and wastewater charges from the 1 April 2017.

Can I have my bill now? 

No. If this change goes ahead, Circle Housing will still bill you for your water and wastewater services until the 31 March 2017 as the service is still under the Circle Housing contract.  

Can I give Thames Water my bank details now to set up a direct debit ready for my new bill? 

No. If this change goes ahead, Thames Water will work with Circle Housing to get in contact with you.

Can I apply for a water meter? 

Residents have always been able to apply for a water meter. Your application should be made to Thames Water directly and they will then assess if your property is suitable for a meter to be installed.

Can Thames Water help me to pay my bills before the 31 March 2017?

Thames Water has lots of ways they can help you save money by using water more efficiently. They can also check your eligibility for preferential rates to help you get all the help you need.

You can find more information on all of the affordability help options on the Thames Water website at thameswater.co.uk/helppaying or call 0800 980 8800.

Will my bill/water charges increase? 

You’ve always paid Circle Housing for water – so this isn’t an extra bill. You currently pay for your water and wastewater via your service charges. This is shown on your rent account under ‘other’. So if this change goes ahead, we won’t be charging you this from 1 April 2017, so you won’t see this charge under ‘other’ on your rent account.

Thames Water review their charges each year according to rules published by the water industry regulator, Ofwat. Charges can go up or down depending on a number of factors.