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Wednesday 27 September 2023 Dublin: 16°C
# Bills Bills Bills
Irish Water: "People are getting used to the water bill coming in the door"
The utility says it expects more people will pay the second round of bills.

IRISH WATER WON’T speculate on how many people will pay the second round of water bills, but the utility expects the numbers to go up from last time.

Last month it was revealed that 43% of households paid up in the first quarter of the year, but the utility says this will grow.

“A second bill in and of itself acts as a reminder, there are some people whose billing payment behaviour is that they only pay every second bill,” according to spokesperson Elizabeth Arnett.

“There are people who manage their money that way, so we know that those two things will increase payment.”

Speaking at Irish Water’s call centre in Cork, Arnett said that because water charges are such a new departure, comparing payment rates with other utilities would not make sense.

She would not speculate on how many people they expected would pay the second bill, other than to say it will be more.

“We would expect that at each billing event we will move forward. It’s very difficult to say what a normal pattern would be for something that is brand new.”

Asked about the text messages Irish Water customers have been receiving, Arnett says texts are the most “cost effective” way to contact customers about their bill.

She adds that a utility sending out billing reminders is completely normal:

It’s not unusual to get a reminder about your TV licence, about your phone bill. It’s headlines when Irish Water do it but it’s not unusual in any way shape or form.

As the second round of water bills nears completion, Irish Water’s billing services manager Yvonne Harris says they’ve received less than half the calls they did when the first bills went out.

Harris says that this indicates progress.

From a customer perspective, we’ve probably had less than half the customer calls in this billing run than we had in the previous billing run. Which is a very positive message because customers are getting used to the fact that the water bill is coming in the door.

Read: ‘Every time Alan Kelly picks up the phone to a journalist, the Irish Water policy changes’ >

Read: Irish Water has started ringing people about their unpaid bills >

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