Conservation Programs

Multi-Family Water Meter Program

This voluntary water meter program was endorsed by Richmond City Council and is designed as a strategy for fairness and equity for water use. The program will allow residents to pay only for the actual amount of water they use, rather than being billed on the flat-rate system.

Why does Richmond have a Voluntary Water Meter Program?
In the face of rising water rates, Richmond residents wanted a more equitable way of paying for their water use. In response to these requests, the City developed the Multi-Family Volunteer Water Meter Program.

What is the cost for the program?
The City will pay the greater of $100,000 or $1,200 per unit towards the installation of water meter(s) for multi-family complexes. A cost estimate for your particular complex would be determined by the City.

Quarterly Payments: When you switch to a water meter, your bill is divided over four smaller payments, one every three months, instead of paying everything at the beginning of the year. This enables you to track water usage more closely.

Free water conservation devices: To help you save water and money, all properties with a water meter qualify for a water conservation kit, which includes the following devices:

  • Low-flow showerhead
  • Low-flow faucet aerators (for both kitchens and bathrooms)
  • Toilet leak detection dye tablets
  • Toilet cycle diverter

How much should you expect to save with a water meter?
The tables below outline the estimated potential savings (based on 2016 rates) depending on average number of occupants per unit in the complex. The usage calculations are based on Environment Canada's data for average Canadian water consumption. After installing a water meter, the City would send one consolidated utility bill directly to the strata, and strata determines how the costs are allocated to each unit.

Average # of Occupants Per Unit Water & Sewer Flat Rate Per Unit Estimated Metered Cost Water & Sewer Estimated Average Savings
1 $694.22 $238 $456
1.5 $694.22 $353 $341
2 $694.22 $467 $227
2.5 $694.22 $581 $113
3 $694.22 $695 $0
Average # of Occupants Per Unit Flat Rate Water & Sewer (Per Unit) Estimated Metered Cost Water & Sewer Estimated Average Savings
1 $957.23 $238 $719
1.5 $957.23 $352 $605
2 $957.23 $467 $490
2.5 $957.23 $581 $376
3 $957.23 $695 $262
3.5 $957.23 $809 $148
4 $957.23 $923 $34

Frequently Asked Questions

Is my complex eligible for a water meter?
Where will my water meter be installed?
Does it cost me anything to have a water meter installed?
I want to volunteer for a water meter - what do I do now?
What is the two-year guarantee?
How long will the installation take?
How do water meters help conserve water?
Who can benefit from a water meter?
What do you get if you sign up?
Can I revert back to the flat rate after the meter is installed?
How often will I receive a bill under the metered rate?
Why, under the metered rate, are water and sewer billed quarterly instead of yearly?
What if there is a leak in our underground water service?
Will it become mandatory for all homes to be metered?
Will my plumbing system or hot water tank be affected by the water meter?
Do I have to be home for the installation?
What do I have to do prior to the installation?
Will the meter affect my water pressure?
Are the water saving devices guaranteed to work?
Where can I get more information?