Understanding water infrastructure

Not everyone is connected to Council's water infrastructure. Those ratepayers who are connected currently pay either a fixed amount for water supply as part of their annual rates invoice or are identified as receiving an extraordinary supply and are metered for water.

Ratepayers with meters pay a metered charge rate in their annual rates and, in addition, will be charged based on the volume of water consumed. A quarterly consumption invoice is issued in January, March, July and October of each year.

Paying online – the easy way to pay!

It’s easier than ever to pay your invoices, just go to our online payment portal.

Pay your rates online

Register for emailed invoices

Council has introduced an option to have your water invoice emailed rather than posted. Register here if you would like to receive future water invoices.

Direct debit

A direct debit is where you give Council authority to deduct a specific amount from your bank account to cover your invoice. Direct debit is offered quarterly on the due date of the invoice. This ensures you pay on time and don't incur any penalties. Just download the form and return it completed and signed to PO Box 903, Invercargill 9810 or email it to accounts@southlanddc.govt.nz

12 December 2022

Water rating resources

Frequently asked questions

The property owner is expected to pay the targeted rate but may pass on water use charges to the tenant (see section 39 of the Residential Tenancies Act 1986). The property owner is liable for rates pursuant to the Local Government (Rating) Act 2002.

Any arrangement regarding payment of a water consumption charge is usually included in the Tenancy Agreement between the owner and the tenant. If the tenant does not pay the water charges, this falls on the property owner. The Council has no involvement in matters relating to the Residential Tenancies Act.

For further questions concerning responsibilities under that Act, please contact Tenancy services on 0800 836 262.


Water isn’t free. There is a cost to treating, operating and maintaining the network that gets it from the treatment plant to the tap. Charges cover the cost of operating and maintaining this essential infrastructure.


Check your reading is similar to that on your bill. If it is, check for leaks on your property, look into your usage pattern and visit the Smart Water website for tips on how you can save water.

There are also alternative options such as recycling grey water and supplementing garden supply with rain tanks.

Call Council on 0800 732 732 and ask to speak with someone in our waters team for assistance.


There are lots of tips and tricks available at www.smartwater.org.nz If you can save water, your bill will be lower!


If the leak is on your property (after the meter), it is the owner’s responsibility to fix the leak by contacting a plumber. If the leak is before the meter, no need to panic, you won’t be charged for this water as it hasn’t gone through your meter yet.

We do ask you to call Council on 0800 732 732 and lodge a request for service to have the leak repaired so we’re not wasting our valuable resource.


Just like your power, you’ll need to have a final reading. Ten days’ notice is required to Council so give us a call on 0800 732 732 or email accounts@southlanddc.govt.nz or log a request here

If you still get a metered water invoice in your name after selling the property, it may mean that the Council hasn't been notified of the sale. It is normally your solicitor handling the sale that arranges this - check with them that they have sent this through.