No one will take responsibility for our water meter mismanagement

We have two water meters outside our flat which don’t work, but neither the developer, the management company or the water company will help us

Two years ago I moved into a brand new Barratts apartment block, which is run by a management company. Water meters are located in the ceiling outside each flat and should be read by scanners every six months. Unfortunately the scanners don’t work and we have been paying out more money than we should .

Thames Water says the whole water system has been incorrectly installed as two systems instead of one. Furthermore, the individual meters for the hot water, also outside each flat and which should be read by the management company, don’t work. So each tenant is given an estimated amount of how much hot water and heating they use, which are not consistent with the number of rooms in each apartment. ML, London

Barratts says there is an issue between the managing agents and the firm that installed the water meters about how to read them – the agents say they need additional software, but the installer says they don’t. Barratts denies responsibility but is arranging a meeting to sort out the dispute.

Thames Water provided a fuller explanation. It delivered individual meters to the developer to install for each flat, ahead of connecting a bulk supply to the development. Once the cold water meters were connected Thames Water visited the site and found they had been installed in locked ceiling voids outside each flat. There is also a hot water supply. Both systems were connected to Bluetooth wireless technology that should send details of usage to a computer. This is a private reading system that Thames Water does not control and, even without the dual hot and cold system, would have had problems reading the meters.

Because of the way the meters are installed, all the accounts on your development are set on a reduced “notional value” of £209 a year, so you are paying very little for cold water. All these problems meant Thames could not open an account for you until January 2010, nearly two years after you moved in. You have not paid anything for water in that period, and you won’t have to.

Thames says it is aware that developers are increasingly adopting hot and cold supply systems and it might offer hot water meters itself so it can bill customers directly.

You can email Margaret Dibben at or write to Margaret Dibben, Your Problems, The Observer, Kings Place, 90 York Way, London N1 9GU and include a telephone number. Do not enclose SAEs or original documents. The newspaper accepts no legal responsibility for advice.

Margaret Dibben © Guardian News & Media Limited 2011 | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions | More Feeds

Need a Loan? Visit Secured Loans Broker.

View full post on Free Secured Loans Advice

This entry was posted in Bad Credit Loan UK and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>