My water bill and rates

Water/wastewater/stormwater charges effective January 1, 2021

Charges 2020 2021 Change
water volume – $/cubic metre (m3) $1.77 $1.82 $0.05
water basic – $/day $0.26 $0.26 $0.00
wastewater volume – $/cubic metre (m3) $1.92 $1.94 $0.02
wastewater basic – $/day $0.32 $0.32 $0.00
stormwater – $/month $5.80 $6.40 $0.60

Other charges

Other charges 2020 2021 Change
Clair Tower Bulk Water Fill Station Rate $3.41 $3.75 $0.34
Water turn off/turn on requests $197 $271 $74
3/4*1″ Meter Home builder kit charge $202 $207 $5

*Turn on/off, investigations, low pressure, frozen meters, etc. relating to private side issues

Water meter connection charges

Frozen meter charge: meter connection charge based on size:

Water meter size (inches) Water meter size (millimetres) 2020 2021
5/8 X 1/2 15 $303.23 $310.98
5/8 X 3/4 15 $304.25 $312.00
3/4 20 $326.69 $334.91
3/4 X 1 20 $334.81 $343.03
1 25 Set by Water Services Set by Water Services
1 1/2 40 Set by Water Services Set by Water Services
2 50 Set by Water Services Set by Water Services
3 75 Set by Water Services Set by Water Services
4 100 Set by Water Services Set by Water Services
6 150 Set by Water Services Set by Water Services
8 200 Set by Water Services Set by Water Services
10 250 Set by Water Services Set by Water Services

The City’s water, wastewater and stormwater charges appear on your electricity bill, but they are not connected to electricity usage or rates.

Water bill suddenly higher than usual?

How charges support Guelph’s infrastructure

Water, wastewater and stormwater charges cover the cost of:

  • ensuring a safe, clean and reliable water supply
  • preparing for and recovering from more severe and frequent storms
  • proper wastewater treatment
  • maintaining, replacing and building new infrastructure as Guelph continues to grow

These costs are not covered by your property taxes. The City does not make a profit from water, wastewater or stormwater fees, and they are not used to pay for any other City program or service.

Water and wastewater volume charges are based on the amount of water you use, as measured by the water meter. These charges cover about 85 per cent of Guelph’s water and wastewater costs.

Water and wastewater basic daily charges are based on the size of your water connection. These charges cover about 15 per cent of water and wastewater costs; fixed costs like water meters, fire protection, customer service, billing, and compliance.

Residential stormwater fees are calculated by measuring the hard surfaces that cause rain and melted snow to runoff into the City’s storm sewer system – roofs, driveways, and parking lots etc.

The average amount of hard surfaces on residential properties in Guelph is 188 square metres. We call that Guelph’s Equivalent Residential Unit (ERU) and we use it to calculate monthly stormwater fees for all properties.

  • All residential property owners and tenants who pay electricity, water, and wastewater bills pay the same monthly stormwater fee.
  • Owners of multi-residential properties are billed based on the number of units in the building.

Industrial, commercial and institutional stormwater fees are based on the size of the hard surfaces on their property, divided by Guelph’s Equivalent Residential Unit (ERU) of 188 square metres, and then multiplied by the monthly stormwater rate.

For example, here’s the calculation for a business property with 750 square metres of hard surface:

  • 750 square metres/188 square metres = 4 ERUs
  • Stormwater rate x 4 ERUs = monthly payment

Why rates go up, even if you use less water

The price of electricity, gas, goods and services, or changes in provincial regulations can affect the cost of delivering water and wastewater and stormwater services.

Conservation keeps rates as low as possible

Rates would increase even more if Guelph didn’t promote water conservation and efficiency. When we use less water, there’s less wear and tear on City’s pumps, pipes and treatment systems; maintenance costs are lower, our equipment lasts longer, and we can delay expensive infrastructure upgrades – that’s millions of dollars.

Wastewater charges apply to all the water you use

Water meters measure the total amount of water you use. The City doesn’t have separate meters to measure the amount of water that goes down your drain or toilet into the wastewater system, runs off your property into the storm sewer, or soaks into the ground. The cost of installing and reading those meters would exceed the savings for customers.

How we use water and wastewater reserves

Reserves are a lot like a savings account. They provide stability when we experience variations in revenue and help fund long-term projects.

  • Water and Wastewater Operating Rate Stabilization Reserves are funded from operating budget surpluses and used to prevent sudden rate increases or cover revenue shortfalls.
  • Water and Wastewater Capital Reserve Funds are funded with contributions from the operating budget and are used to fund current and future capital projects.

Water and wastewater budget

When planning our annual budget, we review our revenue and reserve funds from the current year, estimate the revenue we can expect next year, and consider the cost of day-to-day operations and infrastructure maintenance and replacement projects.

Water and Wastewater Long-range Financial Plan

Bylaws governing water and wastewater charges

Water and Wastewater Rates and Charges (2019)-20448: regarding water and wastewater fees or charges and billing schedules for activities, costs and uses of water and wastewater services in the City of Guelph.

Water and Wastewater Customer Accounts Bylaw (2016)-20074: regarding customer service processes for billing of water and wastewater services in the City of Guelph including account creation, water meter protocols, handling of unpaid accounts and billing dispute resolution.

Personal information

Personal information provided when creating an account with Alectra Utilities, the City of Guelph’s water, wastewater and stormwater billing agent, is collected on behalf of the City of Guelph.

Personal information provided will be used for the following purposes:

  • Administration and management of water services accounts;
  • Establishing, delivering and maintaining water, wastewater and stormwater services;
  • Locating, maintaining and servicing water meters;
  • Responding to customer service requests and inquiries;
  • Communicating with customers;
  • Billing and collecting payment for water, wastewater and stormwater fees;
  • Water demand monitoring for program planning and administration.

Personal information, as defined by Section 2 of the Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (MFIPPA), is collected under the authority of the Municipal Act, 2001, and in accordance with the provisions of MFIPPA.

If you have questions about the collection, use or disclosure of this personal information please visit

If you have questions about the City’s collection, use or disclosure of this personal information please contact the Information and Access Coordinator at 519-822-1260 extension 2349 or email [email protected].

For more information

Water Services
[email protected]