A Paddocks Sectional Title Lifestyle Blog
Athol Behr, the body corporate manager of Kenwyn on Sea in Ballito, shares his experience in deciding whether it’s a good idea to install individual water meters at the scheme.
Individual Water Meters vs. One Common Meter
There must be many sectional title complexes with only one water meter where the water bill is divided amongst owners and paid according to the PQ of each unit. This raises two areas of concern:
1) Is this fair on the smaller units, say a two bedroom unit which will probably be occupied by a couple as opposed to a three bedroom unit which will be occupied by a larger family; and
2) The situation where a unit is only used by the owner during his annual vacation as opposed to a permanently occupied unit or one which is rented out continuously as holiday accommodation.
The only answer is to install an individual water meter for each unit.
Or is it?!
Let’s look at a case in question.
The block has 46 flats:
The average water bill for the whole complex during 2012/13 was R2500.00 per month with a sewage surcharge of (on average) R3000.00 per month. This results in an average bill of R120.00 per month per flat.
Being an older building (just over 30 years) the majority of the flats need two water meters because of the water reticulation design. The quotation for installing individual meters amounted to R88 000.00 which would result in an average Special Levy of R1900.00 per flat. It is anyone’s guess as to how much (or little) the “seldom occupied” flats would save but even at a 50% saving it would take them nearly three years to recover their investment.
Is installing individual water meters in the scenario mentioned worth it?
I think not.
What are your thoughts and experiences on this issue?
In a future post Athol Behr will look at ways to conserve water within sectional title schemes, be it with one or multiple meters.
Image source: http://www.wrc.org.za