What is your average water bill?

Photo by PoPville flickr user wolfkann

“Dear PoPville,

I recently bought a house and live in it with one other person. What is an average water bill? I just got one that seemed really expensive. $120 for one month (One house, two people. We have high efficiency everything in terms of water.) Where I used to live, without all the high efficiency stuff, my water bill was about $100 for three months.”

50 Comment

  • I split water with 4 people in a rowhouse. Our bill rarely goes over $100. You might want to check for running toilets and other culprits.

    • Agree with Honest Abe. I usually pay $40-$50/month in two-person rowhouse. One month it jumped to +$100. I investigated and turns out one of the two toilets was running. Fixed it and bill went back to $40-$50 range.

  • I average $45 / month for a house with 2 people. That is summer usage and includes watering a garden, once a month car washing and occassional overnight visitors.

    I seem to recall that DC Water can help you do some sort of audit to find out why your usage is so high. Otherwise call a plumber to find that leak.

  • DC Water is the worst. Make sure they are doing an actual meter read. Apparently they weren’t billing us for 3+ years (we were paying fees not water usage) and we had no idea because it was our first time paying a water bill. After 3 years, they realized this error, backbilled us for estimated usage, and threatened multiple times to shut off our water/send to collections while we tried to work with their investigators on an accurate total owed. It was incredibly stressful but we need water more than we needed to fight over a $1000.

  • Seems high to me. I usually pay around $40 per month for two people in a row home.

  • 5 people in a rowhouse and its usually $60, $90 around Christmas when everyone comes to visit for weeks. When it was just two of us and we moved in, we were paying $120-$150. I bought those kits that turn your toilet flushing handle into the two button water saving kind and it instantly cut the bill in half.

  • palisades

    Nothing. Utilities are included in rent

  • Row house with 3 seperate units. Water is the only utility that isn’t seperately metered and for 5 people it’s about 100 a month.

  • Rowhouse condo with 2 units and 4 people total; water is shared and part of the condo fee. We’re usually $100-$120/month.

  • I’m one person and pretty consistently $27

    • That’s exactly what I paid this morning for my latest bill – also one person in a Petworth row house, and I have an annoyingly runny toilet (I normally can catch it when it acts up, but not always).

  • Mine is usually between $40 and $60 with two people in a row house. I would guess our usage is pretty average. Note that if it’s the first bill you’ve gotten it will be bigger than usual due to connection fees and a possibly abnormally large billing period (I think my first bill upon moving in actually covered a month and a half or two months, and was about $130.)

    • Also, if you just moved in they may have included some days or weeks in the billing cycle prior to when you moved in. Check the dates on the bill, call DC Water if you have any questions.

  • This was $100 for *three* months, yes? If so, you’re fine. If for one month, you have a leak or a runny toilet.

  • Hi, I had the same problem. We normally pay $50 max!! One month it was $90 so I called them and got the scoop. Basically, what they charge you is based on an average. Then they will actually do a reading in a few months and will adjust all of your bills. You may want to call them and let them know you just moved in because it’s very likely no actual reading was done. They’ll send someone to do a reading and adjust your next bill. (In my case I went ahead and paid what they bill said and my following bill went down to $10 with the overcharge from the previous month). Very European of them!

  • Ally

    Ours is always around $70 a month (standard, 2-level, 2-3BR town home). I know we have a toilet that continually runs, so that’s probably part of it. Also reasonably certain that at least one of the cats has figured out how the handle works and is just doing it for fun.

    • If you know it is continually running, why don’t you fix it? There are these things called water shortages all over the world.

      • Kindly climb down off your high horse. The fact that there are water shortages all over the world doesn’t mean it’s in short supply here. More than water Ally is wasting money.

        You, on the other hand, wasted my time.

      • And clean your plate because there is this thing called hunger all over the world.

      • Minus the snarky comments — A running toilet is an easy fix. You probably just need a new flush valve — a $10 part that is easy to install yourself.

  • Row house, two adults with a toddler, averaging around $45-50/month.

  • Single family rowhouse, it’s usually around $40 in the winter climbing to near $60 in the summer (automated irrigation system for the garden). Before kids and the associated extra baths/laundry we would go as low as the mid-$20s some months.

  • Yeah, that seems high. We’re two people in a rowhouse and average around $40/$45 a month for water.

  • Tiny apartment. Two extremely cheap adult women rarely home. About $15 total.

  • Same thing happened to me: $180 for my first bill. But that ended up including an activation charge and it was for 45 days of service, meaning my monthly charge worked out to be about $80. Maybe still high, but not close to the initial sticker shock.

    I may try the toilet thing.

  • Row House, two units, 4 adults and 1 child and we pay around $120 a month in the summer. That’s filling up the kiddie pool 1-2 times a week too, washing car and watering the lawn.

  • I have a row house, two people, lots of impermeable surfaces (which adds to your bill), no high efficiency anything, and my kitchen faucet is dripping (I should really fix that). Average about $65 a month.

  • Petworth rowhouse with 3 people: $47 or $54. I forget the exact figures, but they bill by the “CFM” or something, making the bill always either forty-something or fifty-something. Summer lower, winter higher.
    Petworth 4-unit apartment building – 2 couples, 2 singles: $105-$115

  • Formerly Broken Jaw

    I live alone ad mine runs around $32 a month

  • justinbc

    2 people plus lots of plant watering = about $80. It’s the same amount every single month, which as someone said earlier is because of the way DC Water rounds their billing to the nearest (whatever unit of measurement they use is). I’m pretty sure there was a previous PoP post which detailed this.

  • $90 a month in tenleytown. Along with water, you also get charged for the amount of impermeable surfaces on your property, which includes your house. I just fixed a runny toilet so hopefully our bills will go down a bit.

  • With three in Row house, 2-1/2 bath, it has never been over $61. Normally ranges between $20 & $40

  • Ours is usually $40-$50. It jumped to $90 one month because we were having masons do a lot of work, and they used a lot of water. We rarely water the plants, so our use is mostly showering, cooking, toilets, and drinking water. My advice is for youto check for running toilets, even if the leak is tiny,

  • Thanks. This has been a really helpful thread. We just bought our first home – a row house – earlier this summer and wondered how our water bill (and other utilities for that matter) compared. With the exception of the first month, when there were additional charges. Our last 3 months have run $45-65 for two people. We water our garden a few times a week. I’ll be curious to see how much it costs this month because I power washed the front of our house last weekend.

  • 2-person single-family house, usually about $45, highest ever = $65.

  • row house. Two adults and one toddler (figure mutilple baths a week and she likes to play with the water running the whole time)-highest bill is usually $75 in the summer, lowest about $55/month.

  • It definitely shouldn’t be that high. We had a series of abnormally high bills, and in the end it turned out that we had a leak in our service pipe. Had to replace it to the tune of several thousand dollars. Do you know whether the previous homeowners ever replaced the original (I assume) lead pipe? DC WASA will come out and do an analysis for you. I’d give them a call.

  • I’m in a row house with 5 people total. We usually average about $55 a month for water.

  • High! I run a 4-unit townhouse with total of 5-6 people and bill generally ranges from 80 to 120 a month, would say average is about 105.

  • 3 adults and one baby in a semi-detached and my bill has been around $80 this summer including washing cloth diapers, watering a garden, and frequent house guests. I’d say you have a running toilet. Check to make sure that it fills the tank in a reasonable amount of time after flushing, and listen to see if it runs intermittently when not in use (may need to adjust the water level in the tank). I had to replace one last winter after it added about $30 to the water bill.

  • 100 bucks a month. Rowhouse, two people and a dog. My husband does laundry incessantly and we water the plants a lot. It used to be 70-80. Haven’t checked why it went up so much.

  • About $40 a month here for a row house with two people. Hopefully its just a leaky toilet and not some leaky pipes!

Comments are closed.