The following is a guest contribution from a concerned Leicestershire resident:
"Please read as a matter of urgency. This company wants to introduce water meters for social and private sector rented housing, the aim is not water conservation but screwing the working class on a basic human right.
This policy is being tested in Leicester and then rolled out in the Severn Trent region.
This policy is attacking our housing stock and the low paid.
The typical relet figure for any housing is high last year we had 1872, new lettings and transfer....all would get water meters
Typical cost per month is around £73 for a family of five.
They will also introduce sliding scales of charges, Wessex Water have higher charges in the summer. BBC East Midlands will be in Leicester tomorrow June 29th
Nick, please can you aid people who need a political voice."
Leicester Mercury article: Water meters to be put in 10,000 homes
Severn Trent plans to install 10,000 compulsory water meters in the homes of people who move house in Leicestershire over the next four years.
The water firm says it needs to reduce demand in the face of a growing population and drier weather and launched its Meters 4 Movers scheme yesterday.
It will affect properties across Leicester and the county, in the LE1 to LE19 and LE65 to LE67 postcode areas.
Under the scheme, anyone who moves into a private, council-owned or housing association home will have a meter installed to record the amount of water being used, and bills can be worked out.
Homes without a water meter have bills with a fixed charge each year based on the property's rateable value.
Some estate agents have expressed concerns about the scheme. Jan Lancaster, manager of Berkley estate agents of Hinckley Road, said: "It's not going to be welcome news for people who share houses, whether it is students or families. It's going to affect people in big properties who are going to be charged for what they use."
James Court, director of Readings Property Group, in Granby Street, Leicester, said:
"There has always been a resistance to water meters by owners with families.
It's likely to have an impact on buyers with large families as the costs can be very high. If the scheme was being carried out over a smaller area, it could have an effect on the number of people wanting to move to that area."
A spokesman for Severn Trent Water said: "With a meter, you only pay for what you use so it could mean smaller bills in the long run. It's the fairest way to pay.
If you're in a larger family and water consumption is high, you can find out how much you're using and hopefully reduce the amount."
About 30 per cent of UK households have a fixed water meter.
According to water regulator Ofwat, homes with one or two occupants with a Severn Trent meter save an average of 31 per cent on their bill, but homes with more than two occupants pay an average of 13 per cent more.
To continue reading, or adding a comment, go to the Leicester Mercury article (tuesday 28th June)HERE