If you expect that you will be needing to rent an apartment in a few years, your experience will likely be significantly different from that of modern-day renters. Today, your payment of rent covers the cost of your room as well as your water use. This is because most apartment buildings do not have individual water meters (called submeters) to measure the amount of water you personally use. This is about to change thanks to surveys and studies like the one conducted using Los Angeles tenants that found water usage among the tenants remained unaltered despite the state’s drought and the governor’s order that water usage be reduced by 25%.
New Law Requires Submeters Installed
Senate Bill 7 (signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown in September 2016) will now require every new apartment building constructed on or after January 1, 2018 to have submeters installed for every unit so that the tenants of each unit can be billed separately for their individual water consumption. Supporters of the law hope that merely being able to see one’s water consumption on a monthly basis will help encourage apartment dwellers to cut back on their water usage. A this time, the law does not require that existing apartment buildings to be retrofitted with submeters.