Customer categorisation

Irish Water has set out a clear difference between its Domestic, Non-Domestic and Mixed Use Customers.

The three customer types are defined as follows:

  1. Domestic Customer means a Customer in respect of a Dwelling.
  2. Mixed Use Customer means a Customer in respect of any part (or parts) or all of a Mixed Use Premises and where there are different Customers in respect of the different parts of a Mixed Use Premises nothing in Irish Water’s Water Charges Plan should be construed as meaning that the Mixed Used Customer in respect of the part of a Mixed Use Premises that is a Dwelling will have any liability for charges that are properly for the account of the Mixed Use Customer in respect of the part of the Mixed Use Premises that is a Non-Domestic Premises.
  3. Non-Domestic Customer means a Customer in respect of a Non-Domestic Premises.

How we define customer types

The following supplemental definitions give further context to the meaning of the 3 customer types as set out above:

  • Dwelling means a Premises occupied by a person as his or her place of Private Residence (whether or not as his or her Principal Private Residence).
  • Mixed Use Premises means a Premises encompassing a Dwelling and a Non-Domestic Premises which receives a Shared Supply of water and/or a Shared Collection of Wastewater (by way of example, and without limiting the scope of the foregoing, a supply serving a farmhouse occupied as a Dwelling and a farm; or, a Premises encompassing a shop and a flat occupied as a Dwelling).
  • Non-Domestic Premises means any Premises that is not a Dwelling.
  • Premises includes any building, vessel, vehicle, structure or land (whether or not there are structures on the land and whether or not the land is covered with water), and any plant or related accessories on or under such land, or any hereditament of tenure, together with any out-buildings and curtilage. The definition of a Premises includes any part (or parts) of a Premises and a Premises may encompass both a part (or parts) occupied as a place of Private Residence (i.e. a Dwelling) and a part (or parts) which is not occupied as a place of Private Residence (i.e. a Non-Domestic Premises).
  • Private Residence means a Premises in which the Occupier(s) reside privately (i.e. with a general right to exclude others).

Charging non-domestic customers

The CRU’s decision on the Non-Domestic Tariff Framework establishes a national suite of tariffs which will be applied consistently to Non-Domestic Customers, including Mixed Use Customers (in respect of the water supplied and discharged from the Non Domestic Premises). The Non-Domestic Tariff Framework does not apply to Domestic Customers.

Mixed use customers

From the 1st October 2021, Mixed Use Customers will be charged the same tariffs for water and wastewater services as all other Non-Domestic Customers. Mixed Use Customers are charged in the normal way for the usage relating to the part of the Premises that is a Non-Domestic Premises. Metered Mixed Use Customers will be entitled to a domestic allowance to account for the usage of the part of the Mixed Use Premises that is a Dwelling.

The CRU’s decision on the Non-Domestic Tariff Framework provides that from the 1st October 2021 the domestic allowance is set at 213m3 per annum for a metered Mixed Use Premises where part of the Mixed Use Premises which is a Dwelling has zero to four occupants. From this date, only metered Mixed Use Customers will be entitled to a domestic allowance.

Metered Mixed Use Customers may also apply for an additional domestic allowance amount of 25m3 for each additional occupant of the Dwelling above four. Irish Water will publish details at a later date on how metered Mixed Use Customers can apply for an additional domestic allowance amount.

How does the customer categorisation apply to me?

In an effort to assist our customers the table below describes, by way of example and general guidance, how some common types of connections will be categorised using the updated customer definitions. A connection means the customer has a connection to the public network for water and/or wastewater services. It is appreciated that not all connections might easily fall within these generalised criteria and these examples are provided for information purposes only.

Should a customer wish to query the categorisation applied by Irish Water then we will be happy to discuss the individual circumstances and the exact nature of the connection with the customer. It should also be noted that many of the ‘connection types’ and associated ‘general customer categorisations’ as set out in the table below do not vary from those that have been applied previously by Local Authorities. It should be noted (and as per the definitions set out above) that a Dwelling is a “place of private residence”.

Connection type

General Customer categorisation

Boarding school

Non-Domestic Customer

Camp site

Non-Domestic Customer

Caravan park – (short-term or long-term stay)

Non-Domestic Customer

Community of individuals residing in a premises provided by the community (convent, monastery etc)

Non-Domestic Customer

Farm with associated Dwelling

Mixed Use Customer

Holiday homes

Domestic Customer (if occupied as a Dwelling

Otherwise

Non-Domestic Customer)

Hospitals

Non-Domestic Customer

Hotel or hostel type accommodation (including with residents occupying single/multiple rooms on a long-term basis)

Non-Domestic Customer 

‘Normal B&B’ arrangement with the owner or occupier occupying part of the Premises as a Dwelling.

Mixed Use Customer

Nursing home

Non-Domestic Customer

Places of work with staff accommodation (e.g. army barracks)

Non-Domestic Customer

Premises with a Dwelling which also has a registered company address

Domestic Customer

Otherwise

Mixed Use (only if sufficiently distinct part of the Premises comprises a Non-Domestic Premises)

Prison accommodation

Non-Domestic Customer

Provision of childcare or crèche services in a Dwelling

Domestic Customer

Otherwise

Mixed Use Customer (only if a sufficiently distinct part of the property comprises separate Non-Domestic Premises)

Religious retreat centres

Non-Domestic Customer

Rent-a-room in a Dwelling

Domestic Customer

Sheltered accommodation

Non-Domestic Customer

Short term guest accommodation   with persons occupying single/multiple rooms (or the whole of the Premises).

Mixed Use Customer (if part of the Premises includes a Dwelling)

Or

Non-Domestic Customer (if no part of the Premises is a Dwelling) (e.g. whole premises is available for short-term rental)

Or

Domestic Customer (if rented room within premises which is a Dwelling is not clearly distinct from rest of premises)

Student accommodation in shared halls of residence

Non-Domestic Customer