Water use and billing

 Water Notice Renting High usePayment Plan Water Reading

Who pays water and sewerage access charges?

Leaking tap Properties connected to Council’s town water and sewerage service must pay for these services.

Even if you're not connected to town water or sewerage services, you may need to pay the annual access charge if your property is:

  • within 75 m of Council’s sewerage supply
  • within 225 m of a water main


  • where Council considers it practical and cost-efficient for your property to be connected.

If Council’s service area changes, your property may then attract the relevant charges.

What do my fees and charges pay for?

Annual water and sewer access fees are included in your rates notices and pays for:

  • access to safe, high quality drinking water 24 hours a day
  • removal and treatment of sewage
  • maintenance of our water and sewerage network (including treatment plants, pump stations and pipes)
  • major infrastructure projects to secure our water supply.
  • an annual access charge for water and sewerage services
  • charges for water used on the property and, in some cases, sewer usage
  • other fees and charges specific to your property (for example liquid trade waste)

See fees and payments and read our revenue policy for more information.

Water notices (consumption)

Water Notices or water bills are issued quarterly (or monthly for properties with high water use).

You pay for every drop of water you use or is recorded as passing through your water meter.

Find out ways to save water and save money.

Why is my water bill high?

Is your recent water bill higher than expected? There are several reasons why this could happen:

Is your meter reading correct?

Check the reading on your water meter. If we’ve recorded your last meter reading incorrectly contact our customer service team on 02 6670 2400 or take a photo of your meter reading and email tsc@tweed.nsw.gov.au Make sure you include your property number, property address and full name.

Could there be a leak?

A leak is the most common cause for an increase in water bills. Leaks waste a lot of water and can be hidden from view. Learn how to check for leaks and what to do if you find one. A garden hose left running can use up to 20 litres per minute of water, that’s almost 30,000 litres in a day. Even a small leak can waste 2000 to 10,000 litres in one day!

Have you had visitors?

One extra person in a household for a week can add more than 1000 litres to your water bill. If you’ve had friends or family come to stay, this could explain why your bill is higher than usual. The arrival of a new baby or permanent household member can also increase water use.

Fun in the pool or spa?

More people using your pool or spa leads to higher than normal water loss, more frequent top-ups and increased water evaporation. Find out how to reduce water use for your swimming pool.

Do you have an automatic watering system?

Automatic watering systems and irrigation can often be overlooked. Make sure you understand how to operate your system and program it to be water smart. Irrigation systems can be a source of hidden leaks.

Change of season?

Water use can increase over the warmer months. Your bill has a graph to help you compare your water use with the same time last year, as well as the previous quarter. Learn how to save water indoors and outdoors.

Still doesn’t add up?

If you’re still concerned about your high water bill, give us a call on 02 6670 2400. We can help you get to the bottom of it by going through the last 3 months of water use at your property.

What to do if you find a leak?

If the water has already passed through the meter it is your responsibility to arrange and pay for any repairs.

If the water hasn’t passed through the meter then the leak is likely to be Council's responsibility. Contact us to report the leak.

If you discover an undetectable leak on your property, you may be eligible for a reduction in your water consumption charges. Adjustment for undetectable leakage per property water account shall only be granted twice in a 5 year period per property owner. The 5 year period begins again five years from the date of the first adjusted notice where an adjustment has been granted. The 5 year period begins again on the date that a new property owner commences ownership of the property.

Who pays the water bill?

The registered owner of the property is responsible for the paying the water consumption notice.

There may be tenancy agreements in place, which means the business or tenant pays for the water they use. See NSW Fair Trading for more information.

What if I’m renting?

In NSW, your landlord can only ask you to pay water use charges if the minimum criteria have been met. See NSW Fair Trading for more information.

Water use charges paid by tenants

Tenants can set up a payment plan or arrange for water charges to be direct debited. (Privacy laws mean Council cannot provide information about the account to anyone but the property owner, unless a rates account authority(PDF, 60KB) is in place).

What are pro-rated charges?

The price of water and sewerage usage changes on 1 July every year, and every property is charged 365 days at that annual rate. If your bill straddles 2 financial years, your daily water charges and sewerage usage will be charged at two different rates (last year and this year).

I’m having trouble paying my bill

Older man on phone about bills

We understand it can sometimes be difficult to pay household bills.
If you can’t make a payment on your rates, water or sundry debtor notice, please complete the online form before the due date so we can set up a payment arrangement that suits you. 
If you miss a payment and we have not heard from you, our automatic debt recovery process will begin.
If you need to amend your payment arrangement, you can do this any time by completing a new payment plan form.

When you're ready to set up your plan, complete the simple online form

I want to pay my Water Notice, you have a few options on how to pay your water notice so have a look at ways to pay.