Regional water suppliers will continue to provide water and sewerage services in addition to maintaining the water network. They will provide water on a wholesale basis to water retailers.
The water and network will remain the same so there is no reason to worry about any reduction in quality or disruption to service when switching supplier.
Licensed water retailers will purchase water services from wholesalers. Retailers will be the first point of contact for customers, providing them with billing, meter reading and customer services.
Water retailers set their prices and can package water services with other services which add value for the customer.
From April 2017, businesses and other non-households will be able to choose who supplies their water and wastewater services.
Non-household customers include businesses, charities, not-for-profit organisations and public sector bodies.
With the market deregulated, non-household water customers will be able to compare offerings from different water retailers and choose one which is best for their business.