Water Budget Factors

Every water customer has unique water needs.  Usually more water is necessary for large rural properties than for an individual condo or apartment. Also, businesses use water in different ways depending on the particular products they produce, ship or sell. That is why Western developed a rate structure based on meeting each customer’s specific water needs with individualized water budgets. 

Residential water budgets are calculated using factors that may be unique for every customer. Please use our online form to request changes to any of your water budget factors.

The factors that have the largest impact on your water budget include:

Persons Per Household
Your indoor water budget is 60 gallons per person per day. 60 gallons per person per day provides adequate water for all indoor water uses - cooking, cleaning, sanitation and laundry. In fact, California legislation (SBx7-7) states that 55 gallons per person per day is efficient indoor water use. Western's indoor water budgets provide for a minimum of 3 persons for every single family residential household. If there are more residents in your home please submit an adjustment form (link to form).

The calculation formula for indoor water use is:

(60 gallons x number of persons per household x days of in the billing period)

Indoor water used within the water budget (Tier 1) is charged at the lowest rate Western can purchase or produce water from its sources.

Irrigated Area
On most properties in western Riverside County, outdoor irrigation consumes the most water. The larger the property the more water that may be needed to water the landscape. The water budget for outside irrigation is based on the size (in square feet) of your irrigated area. This is not the same as your total property size. The changing weather is updated every day to calculate plant water need in your microzone. When weather is hotter the outdoor water budget goes up. When weather is cooler the outdoor water budget goes down. University research and State law established maximum allowable water application to urban landscapes. The maximum was defined as 80% of the local Evapotranspiration rate (see What is ET, link for more information).

The calculation for outdoor water use is:

(Daily microzone ET x Monthly plant factor x Square footage)

Outdoor water used within the water budget (Tier 2) is charged at the 2nd lowest rate. The rate in Tier 2 is a blend of the costs to produce local water and purchase more expensive imported water.

 

Every water customer has unique water needs.  Typically, more water is necessary for large home properties than condos, and businesses use water in differing ways.  That’s why Western developed a rate structure based on meeting each customer’s specific water needs with individualized water budgets. 

Water budgets are calculated using factors that may be unique for every customer. Please use our online form to request changes to any of your water budget factors.

The other water budget factors include:

Pool
A swimming pool evaporates water much like the lawn in your yard. If you have a swimming pool, the measured surface area can be added to the irrigated landscape area to accommodate refilling for water lost to evaporation.
In-home Care
More water may be needed for in-home care of ailing family members. Customers should advise Western, through the adjustment form process (link to form), of the water needs for in-home care. The water budget can be increased to accommodate the need for more water.
Medical Necessities
Medical conditions can require more water. Use the adjustment form to advise Western of the amount of water needed for medical treatment (more showers, baths, laundry, etc.). Your water budget can be increased to accommodate medical equipment and personal needs.
Licensed Childcare
Any home that is licensed for childcare services can apply for an adjustment (link) to increase the water budget. Water per child (30 gallons per child per day) can be added to the overall water budget for your site.
Horses
Water for horses can added to your water budget if you live in a qualified area. Veterinary studies show that large horses can consume up to 30 gallons per day in extreme case. Use the adjustment form (link) to advise Western of the number of horses on your property. The water budget rate structure can also account for bathing, cool-down, sanitation and dust control by adding the stable and/or riding area(s) to the irrigated square footage. Use the adjustment form (link) to advise Western of this water use need.