More than half of water billpayers believe they will struggle to pay a utility bill over the coming year.
That’s according to a new survey conducted by Savanta on behalf of Ofwat, which found that six-in-ten water customers expect their financial situation to get worse in the following months.
A third of those who expect their financial situation to get worse in the next year report feeling depressed.
The survey of 2,306 water bill payers in England and Wales also shows that nearly 47% of those who expect their financial situation to get worse reported feeling worried day to day and 38% reported feeling stressed.
Only three-in-ten bill payers reported they are aware that water companies can provide financial support to those struggling with bills.
Dr Claire Forbes, Senior Director of Corporate Communications at Ofwat said: “We know that many people are facing a tough year and this report highlights the worrying impact that money difficulties can have on mental health and wellbeing.
“It’s vital that water companies and the wider sector are alert to this and provide support and information to customers who are struggling.”