Choosing your supplier

Developers may be able to choose to replace the existing local monopoly  water and/or sewerage company at a particular site or premises with a “new appointee”.

New appointees can supply the site’s premises with water and/or sewerage services on an on-going basis and are responsible for the on-site infrastructure providing these services. They are appointed by us to serve a specific geographic area. You can ask any company to be your supplier, and it has to apply to us for an appointment to serve your site. New appointees can get water from their own source, or buy it wholesale from another water company; likewise, they can either treat sewage themselves or agree to discharge it into another company’s sewers.

When considering applications for a new appointee we also make sure that the end customers will be no worse off than they would have been had they stayed with the existing local monopoly water or sewerage company. This means ensuring that the quality of services and the charges for services are at least comparable. Similarly, the Drinking Water Inspectorate must be satisfied that the new appointee can supply safe drinking water and if the new appointee has its own sewerage treatment works it will need the Environment Agency’s or Natural Resource Wales’s permission to discharge treated sewage.

Why do we have NAVs?

Developers may be able to choose to replace the existing local monopoly water and/or sewerage company at a particular site or premises with a “new appointee”. The new appointee would become the monopoly provider for that particular site.

Without NAVs, the incumbent water company is the only party who can requisition water and sewerage infrastructure. This leaves them with a considerable amount of power to dictate the terms and price of agreements. NAVs provide competition and help to ensure everyone gets the best deal possible.

To have a development connected to a NAV rather than an incumbent, you will have to contact a NAV and have the discussion. They will have to then apply to us for an appointment or a variation of their appointment in order to serve the site.

Who is eligible?

In order to choose a new appointee, you must meet one of the following criteria.

  • The unserved criterion. Your site has no existing mains water connection and it has no existing mains sewer connection.
  • The consent criterion. The existing local monopoly water or sewerage company agrees to transfer your site or premises to a new appointee.
  • The large user criterion.
  • Your local monopoly water or sewerage company is based mainly in Wales (currently Dŵr Cymru and Dee Valley Water) and you use more than 250 megalitres of water a year.
  • Your local monopoly water or sewerage company is based mainly in England and you use more than 50 megalitres of water a year

Please see ‘New appointments and variations – a statement of our policy’ for further information.

Things to consider when choosing a new appointee

When you are choosing a new appointee you should consider the following:

  • whether it can offer you any additional or multi-utility services and how promptly and efficiently it can provide those services
  • how it is offering to manage your account
  • what standards of service it is offering and what it will do if it fails to deliver the promised standards
  • The price of the water and /or sewerage services.

What do you need to do to choose a new appointee?

Once you contact a company about your supply, it will need to apply to us to be appointed to your site or premises. We will make sure that you are eligible to switch to a new appointee, and that the new appointee has the resources to supply you with water or sewerage services or both.

Before we can make the appointment you will need to provide your proposed new appointee with a signed letter of consent confirming that you agree to the switch.

Which companies are new appointees?

Any limited company can apply to become a new appointee.

Below are the current active NAVs:

  • Albion Water Limited
  • Albion Eco Limited
  • County Water Limited
  • Icosa Water Services Limited
  • Independent Water Networks Ltd
  • Leep Water Networks Ltd
  • Severn Trent Services (Water and Sewerage) Ltd
  • SSE Water Ltd
  • Veolia Water Projects Ltd

For a register of each individual NAV Site, click here.

How long does it take?

We aim to make the new appointment within 85 working days of receiving a completed application from your proposed new appointee. This may take longer in some circumstances.

For more information, please see Application guidance for new appointments and variations in our table of relevant NAV publications.