Thames Water offers support for people struggling to pay. All the information is below if you are comfortable accessing this yourself. However, if you would like some support, please contact Citizens Advice Reading.
WaterHelp offers a 50% discount on the whole water bill to people on a low income, currently defined as a household earning less than £16,385. This amount includes all income except Disability Living Allowance (DLA), Personal Independence Payments (PIP), Attendance Allowance (AA) and the disability element of any other benefits.
WaterSure caps water bills at £419 for customers with water meters who are struggling to pay their bills. To qualify, someone in the household
- Must receive a means tested benefit AND
- Must have a medical condition that requires extra water OR
- Have three or more children under the age of 19 living at the property with eligibility for child benefits
Flexible payments scheme
There is also the flexible payments scheme which can help reduce payments for bills for three months. This was introduced as part of the COVID support package.
Priority Services Register
For vulnerable people, the Priority Services Register offers non-financial support such as additional support during disconnection of supply and bills in alternative formats. Vulnerable is a broad definition which includes people with very young children, people of retirement age, people with physical and mental health conditions, physical disabilities or limitations. If you think you may be classed as vulnerable, register on the link above.
Water Saving Calculator
Water saving measures are available for free upon completion of the Water Saving Calculator, meaning the measures are more tailored to the consumer. They are small measures for use in the home such as shower timers, add ons to mixer taps which use less water, etc. For those on water meters these measures can save money. When combined with the cost of gas/electricity for heating water, they can save more.
Payment matching scheme
If you are in Water debt of more than £120 but able to make payments towards clearing that debt, Thames Water offer a payment matching scheme. This is for those who can pay their current bill and make a payment towards the arrears, with Thames Water matching that payment pound for pound.