Cost to submeter water

I am looking at a 5 unit rental park located within city limits on city water and sewer on 2 lots. Currently the 5 trailers are on one water meter. What kind of cost could I expect to put meters on all of the units? Would it be ok to expect the tenants to pay the water by having them open an account with the water company, or would it be more attractive for them if I were to included it in the rent up to a certain amount and above that they pay an overage fee? Thanks -Ben

Post Edited (08-15-08 20:42)


There are two costs to water meters. First is the meter itself and meters do different things depending on where and how they will be read. Second is the hard cost of installing the meters.

When I put in meters, and the only ones I have installed have remote readers I have wired to the front of the homes, the hard cost is about $65.00 per meter. I live in Denver and can pick them up right here in town. That cost includes the meter and the remote, I still need wire and 2 connectors for most applications. The connectors are brass and connect the water line to the meter itself, another $10 or so per meter if you need them. I have a handy man install them, I use the same guy all the time so the price is set… about $40 per home unless it needs a shutoff, then another $10 plus the cost of the shutoff.

If the city is reading the meters, a couple of things. First, you need the city to agree which is not easy. Part of that is they are now in charge of the water lines in your park and they have standards which are probably different than thoes the park was built under. Second, the meters are $300 plus and you will need to use a licensed plumber to put them in, probably $100+ per home. The good news is if there is a water line problem the city fixes it…

Be sure to check how the city bills you, cubic feet or in gallons and make your meters do the same readings. I have a spreadsheet that tracks water reading throughout the year which I just save monthly.

Good luck with the park!

Jim Johnson