Water Bills On The Rise - Utility Focus

  May 25, 2018

Lack of repairs and maintenance of water utilities and sewer systems nationwide have led to expensive repairs to pipes and water mains. The expensive repairs have in turn driven water utility prices upward affecting homeowners, renters, and businesses. Water rates are carefully followed by the American Water Works Association, which tracks water rates throughout the country for millions of customers.

According to the Department of Labor, water rates have risen an average of 5.5% per year over the past ten years, more than three times greater than the inflation rate. The median household bill for water and sewer services rose to $77 per month in 2016, up from $44 per month in 2006, amounting to a 75% increase over a ten year period.

Infrastructure repairs are in dire need, as the EPA estimates that the United States needs to spend $655 billion over the next 20 years to upgrade and repair water and sewer systems nationwide. For decades, utility companies have put off making expensive repairs in order to keep rates low and affordable. The postponement of the repairs has finally evolved into higher rates for customers nationwide.

Sources: American Water Works Association, Dept. of Labor

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