In April 2017, the largest competitive water retail market in the world opened for business, bringing the biggest change to the water sector since privatisation.


This new market means 1.2 million businesses, charities and public sector organisations in England are no longer restricted to buying water services from their regional monopoly. Instead, they can shop around, renegotiate, and find the right deal for them. If customers don’t like the service they get, they can take their business elsewhere.

This market can help to deliver lower bills, help people use less water, lead to improved services, and see new offers and bundles emerge.
Along with the potential benefits, businesses and other organisations want to know there is appropriate protection for them. And there is. We are closely monitoring and regulating the market and if we need to intervene in the market to protect customers, we will do so. We have also set limits on the price customers pay if they don’t switch or renegotiate a new deal, to prevent them losing out.