Electricity, water, and natural gas are delivered to buildings using meters that measure the amount of resource consumed. These master meters provide the data to bill the property, but don’t break down the amount used by individual tenants or residents. In a multifamily scenario, in order to bill residents for their usage, submeters are required. Submeters allow the owner of the property to charge residents or tenants just for the amount of utilities they consumed.
Submeters are required in many jurisdictions in new construction projects, but they can also be retrofit into existing properties if the plumbing is designed in a way to support them.
There are many brands and prices of submeters you can buy and install, some with advanced features and apps that allow residents to control their usage in real-time. Quality submeters have a long life and require limited maintenance. Be prepared to test components and change batteries. Your submeter installer may offer this as a service if you don’t want to do it yourself.
You may not know that you are not required to obtain submeters from your local utility company. You can use a vendor of your choice but ensure your submeters are installed by a qualified master plumber.
There are many good reasons to buy submeters from a third-party vendor:
- More price points
- Greater product selection
- Longer warranties
- More features
- Knowledgeable specialists
- Ability to bundle in billing and collections
It’s definitely worth shopping to find the right submeters for your property.