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Water Charges: Sewers

Volume 497: debated on Tuesday 13 October 2009

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office what percentage of (a) all and (b) low income households spent more than 3 per cent. of their disposable income before housing costs on water and sewerage bills, in the latest period for which figures are available. (289682)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

Letter from Karen Dunnell, dated July 2009:

As National Statistician, I have been asked to reply to your recent question asking what percentage of (a) all and (b) low income households spent more than 3 per cent f their disposable income on water and sewerage bills, before housing costs, in the latest period for which figures are available. (289682)

he table below shows the percentage of UK. households with water bills greater than three per cent of disposable income in 2006/07. The table also shows the percentage of households where income is below 60 per cent of the median with water bills greater than three per cent of disposable income. For this estimate an average for the period 2004/05 to 2006/07 has been provided, due to small sample size. The information in this response is based on the Expenditure and Food Survey, which has a sample size of approximately 6,400 households in each year.

These estimates, as with any involving sample surveys, are subject to a margin of uncertainty.

Percentage of households with water bills greater than 3 per cent. of disposable income1, 2 United Kingdom

Percentage

All households3

13

Households where income is below 60 per cent. of median4

40

1 Water bills include water, sewerage charges and water charges of a second home.

2 Disposable income is all income from: wages, self-employment income, occupational pensions, investment income, imputed income from benefits in kind, and state benefits after the deduction of income tax, employees' national insurance contributions and council tax.

3 2006-07.

4 Average value for 2004-05, 2005-06 and 2006-07.

Source:

Office for National Statistics from Expenditure and Food Survey