Customer trust in water companies has fallen to its lowest point in 11 years, with perceptions of the fairness of charges for water and sewerage services also dropping off, according to CCW’s latest annual Water Matters survey for 2021. The organisation renewed its calls for a single social tariff to end the current “postcode lottery” after seeing a rise in the proportion of respondents describing their bills as unaffordable, particularly among vulnerable groups.
Key findings include:
- At 91%, satisfaction with overall water services remained very high. This has been consistent over the last 11 years.
- Overall satisfaction with sewerage services decreased significantly. 78% of people were satisfied with their sewerage services, compared to 85% in the previous year.
- 62% of people perceived their charges to be fair, which was a significant decrease on the previous 12 months (69%).
- Around one in ten people in England felt that their water bills were unaffordable – rising to one in eight in Wales.
- 58% said their household finances were unchanged over the last year, a significant decrease from the previous 12 months (63%). Over one third said they had got worse and the remaining 9% said they had got better.
- 71% of people were confident that their water supply will be available in the longer term without restriction, which was a significant decrease on the previous year (75%).
- Awareness of the extra help offered to people in vulnerable circumstances through water companies’ Priority Services Registers rose from 43% to 48%.
Read more and download the report here.