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Switching supplier

Visit OpenWater and find out which retailers can supply your business with water from April 17

Whilst businesses who use more than 5,000m3 (or five million litres) of water per year have been able to switch their water supplier for some time now, most businesses in England haven’t had this option - but this is about to change.

From April 2017, all businesses in England (including charity, public sector and not-for-profit organisations) will be able to switch their water supplier and their sewerage or trade effluent supplier, much like you can now in the energy and telecom sector.

How the opening up of the market in England will work

Competition in the water market will allow businesses to switch their water and sewerage retailer, giving you the freedom to find the best supplier to suit your business needs.

Wholesalers provide the water and sewerage services to retailers, who will in turn sell these services to business customers.

Retailers will compete with each other by offering the best deal and eligible customers can choose which retailer to buy water and sewerage services from.

You can find more information about the opening of the market and the benefits to you on the Open Water website

How we're getting ready for this change

In order to compete fairly, water companies in England need to separate their wholesale and retail businesses. So we're in the process of separating Anglian Water Business from Anglian Water, ready for April 2017.

Anglian Water will become the wholesaler in this region and will provide water and sewerage services to retailers, like Anglian Water Business. You can find a full list of retailers on the Open Water website.

Over the next couple of months you will receive a number of joint branded letters from Anglian Water and Anglian Water Business telling you about the changes and also about any amendments you may need to make to your current billing arrangements. If you have any questions, please take a look at the Frequently Asked Questions below or you can call Anglian Water Business direct on 03450 704158.  

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I switch supplier now?

If you have a large organisation with multiple sites in England, and each site uses more than 5,000m3 (or five million litres) of water per year, it may be an advantage to switch your water supplier now. You could benefit from a single consolidated water bill reducing your bill administration costs.

You won't however be able to switch your water recycling or trade effluent services until April 2017.

Can I switch my household water supply?

 No, household customers aren't able to change water supplier.

Can I switch supplier if my property is used for domestic and business purposes?

If your property is used for both domestic and business purposes, and the principal use of the property is as a business, you may be eligible to switch. For example, a caretaker’s flat within an office block, or a pub with residential quarters would be classed as a business premises. 

If the principal use of the property is as a home, this is generally classed as a domestic supply and you would not be able to switch supplier. Contact us for more information.

How do I know if I am a business customer?

In the Anglian Water region, business customers are usually charged on one of the Streamline or Profile tariffs. However, the industry regulator, Ofwat, has recently provided some new guidance on defining a business customer. 

If you now fall into this new definition, you will be contacted with advise that your account is changing. 

What happens if I am currently supplied by two different companies – one for water and one for sewerage?

In some parts of the region, your water supplier is different to your supplier of sewerage services. If this is the case, your water company may have been billing you on behalf of your sewerage company for the sewerage services they provide to you, so that you only receive a single bill for each site.

To prepare for the competitive market, most water and sewerage companies will start to bill their business customers directly for the services they provide. This may mean you will start to receive separate bills for water and sewerage. If you would prefer to deal with only one supplier and receive a single bill for these services, you will be able to choose your supplier from April 2017.

You will not need to make any changes to the way you pay for your water, (for example, if you currently pay by Direct Debit this arrangement will remain in place), but payments will only be requested for your water charges. Your sewerage provider will be writing to you to arrange a separate payment arrangement for those services.

You will need to remember to notify both your water supplier and sewerage provider in future if your business moves premises.

Who is Anglian Water Business?

Anglian Water Business is the retail arm of Anglian Water, serving businesses, public sector and not for profit organisations across the East of England and the Hartlepool area. If you have a business account in the East of England, you will be served by Anglian Water Business until the market opens in April 2017.. 

At market opening, your account will be transferred to Anglian Water’s sister company Anglian Water Business (National) Limited unless you decide to choose a different supplier. Remember that customers using more than 5,000m3 (or five million litres) of water per year can switch water supplier now.

You will soon be able to find out about other retailers who are also entering the market on the Open Water website.

 Please note: Households will continue to be served by Anglian Water.


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