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Any one else Bullied by Business Stream Scottish Water Company

Any one else Bullied by Business Stream...

Question and a rant at the same time.  Is any one else sick of  Business Stream Scottish Water Company Bully tactics. They have just invoiced me to the incorrect company 1st invoice. I now have to email because the person on the phone says "the computer say No "  I am joking but definitely on those lines.  They got the information wrong and then refused to change it on the phone after me ringing a ......0845 number which makes my blood boil. I have seen  some of my clients being systematically bullied and threaten with Legal letters and Ballifs and they do not go away.   This is has been going on for years now. Year after year the seem to continuously get away with it.     All I am wanting is feedback  about Business Stream.   I notice FSB Scotland never does anything either.  I am sure I am  not the only who has complaints about this company and their bully tactics of small business. At least I have a good Landlord who has a bit of wellie who made sure I was on the right rate but I would have been rightly stuck otherwise.   Believe me getting on the right rate with Business Stream is a task in itself .  Not all the small Business in Scotland have landlords who will help them out. Many thanks Sarah


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to Mckin
04th Jun 2016 22:46

Do remember that the bill has two components, consumption/waste, based on either meter or RV and surface water, based on RV.

Whilst a meter may reduce the first it does nothing re the second.

They are a pain, we have them turning up unannounced at our offices all the time re units we own.

We have found, given our office is not generally the unit they want info regarding, that if we ask them to make an appointment to speak to us or address their questions in writing it does seem to resolve issues, albeit slowly; I think part of the secret is ensuring they need your cooperation more than you need theirs and making them work for the information; they seem to value it more via e mail/writing/arranged meeting than if merely told at a random visit when the member of their staff seems to forget everything they have been told and you have another dropping in with the same questions 4 weeks later.

However not sure how effective when it is your bill and they are brandishing o/s invoices, but 95 times out of 100 re our let units they will sort once they get the details in writing sosending in copy licences/leases appears to be the most effective tactic.

Thanks (0)
21st Oct 2016 20:11

Over £1000 for a £97 bill - Business Stream

I occupied a unit until May 2015, rented to me By South Lanarkshire Council.
Before the date we moved out I called Business Stream to let them know, South Lanarkshire Council also sent them a Tenancy Update Notice stating the above date for us moving out and providing alternative contact details such as my home address and business phone number, we still have the same business phone number now.
I had paid all the bills up to date before this and was waiting on my final bill which I calculated at one month it would be around £100.

At the begining of October 2016 I received a letter from a debt collection company demanding £1097 to be paid immediately.
I contacted Business Stream who said I needed proof that I moved out in May 2015, although they already received it in a phone call from myself and the letter from South Lanarkshire Council.

I supplied said documentaion and was assured it would be sorted.
After 3 weeks on emails back and forth the last said the bill was £836.73, the majority was for employing a debt collection company to find me, part was for Scottish Water disconecting the water and the very small part that was left was my water usage.
This I found out is £97

Surely they must try everything to contact me first, especially as they had alternative contact details and my phone number before contacting a debt collection company.

I found out that they kept sending invoices to the unit after I had moved and even sent invoices to the unit after I contacted them.

I've asked for this matter to be moved higher and will make a complaint in writing tomorrow.
I will also be contacting my local MSP as well as the SPSO.

Has anyone got any advice on how to deal with this, I don't think I could handle years of arguing with Business Stream.

Thanks (0)
to PeterPerfect
23rd Oct 2016 01:22

Hi Peter
I wrote this question and I had no idea so many had read it and made comments. Their was only about 5 made initially. I am quite shocked. I think the advice DKL gave in June 2016 is good. I would also keep copies and recorded delivery as to why you are not paying. As you say your local councillor should be able to help you or contact your MSP.

Thanks (0)
23rd Oct 2016 00:54

I have just seen this article I was unaware that Scottish Government had awarded the new contract to another firm. Very interesting

Thanks (0)
01st Mar 2017 11:48

We are a small charity supporting victims of domestic abuse and Business Stream have been unbelievably awful towards us. They sent us a huge bill for a tiny office we rent, ignoring the fact that the office was used for about 4 hours each week. We had been paying off the amount but these high costs were a big part of the reason that we decided to give up the office and concentrate on our main area. However, despite being informed that we were giving up the tenancy at the time, Business Stream have continued to bill us - the account at the time of us giving up the office was over £400 in credit because they had been overcharging us - and they are doing everything they can to dodge out of paying us that money back. This has been going on for over a year now and is totally unacceptable....and of course, every time I call them trying to argue the point my company is being charged the use of a premium rate number. Totally disgusting. I also think it's very cowardly tactics of Scottish Water to use this mickey mouse set up called Business Stream in order to bully their customers.

Thanks (0)
to LauraBiding
01st Mar 2017 12:04

Re your having exited the property by finishing the lease, the issue may be getting the landlord/their managing agent to confirm to them who is now responsible for the charges, new tenant or landlord themselves.You telling them unilaterally without their being able to substitue A N Other may be the issue re the process.

Re the charges levied, these were originally laid down in statute, the consumption charge was either based on meter (if metered) or pipe bore size, things like surface water were based on RV. I know in Scotland we now have a little competition as they plague me on the phone, albeit I have yet to investigate any costs savings-will do some research once ye accounts complete.

The whole decouple from the rates was a nonsense, but it is what it is so we need to deal with it.

Thanks (2)
03rd Apr 2017 00:45

There are a couple of things that should be done when you have a genuine grievance against Business Stream.

1. Never phone them. This costs you money and you have no record of the conversation (but they probably will have a recording of it and you might say something in the heat of the moment which could make things worse). Always write by letter (recorded delivery) or email, and ask for an acknowledgement to all correspondence. If you use email, resend your message if you don't get a response within a few days. Keep records of EVERYTHING they say and do, with times and dates.

2. If they are sending you bills with which you have issue, send a *recorded delivery* letter to them stating clearly that you do not agree with the bill contents and that you are raising a formal complaint. If you do this in writing, Business Stream is *legally obliged* to cease sending you further bills, threats of legal action, etc until the complaint you file with them has been fully investigated and dealt with. They MUST put a stop on your account under such circumstances, and failure to do so, especially if they continue sending bills and/or threats of legal action, could render THEM liable to legal action.
If you are dissatisfied with the outcome of their investigation, you can extend the account stop period by referring the matter to the appropriate ombudsman. But always go through the Business Stream complaints procedure first - if you don't do this, the ombudsman will definitely require you to do that before looking at your case.
It may not solve the problem right away, but having your account at least put on hold can take a lot of pressure off while you try to get things sorted out.


Thanks (1)
15th Sep 2017 13:41

I know of many small business's who have been bullied into paying Water Charges that they are NOT due to pay.

This applies to tenants in business centres and the like, where the tenant uses facilities provided by the Landlord.

Please visit for more information.

We ARE winning - please see the embedded Facebook page - you do NOT need to belong to Facebook to view it.

We are currently writing an article on their bullying tactics . . . if you want to contribute please email me at [email protected].


Thanks (1)
16th Sep 2017 14:19

Thank you Richard for your input. I will visit your facebook for some of my client.

I encourage everyone to contribute to your article. Business Stream will continue to do this unless they are stopped. I have clients and friends in business, who have nothing but bother from them. I have twitted the link. I am not on facebook but could not see facebook link.

Kind Regards
Sarah Douglas
Douglas Accountancy and Bookkeeping Services

Thanks (0)
to sarah douglas
16th Sep 2017 15:07


Sorry you cannot get on to Facebook.

The link is here.


Thanks (0)
02nd Nov 2017 09:41

Water Charges
Pigeon club 2500 rv with 100% relief via SBBS, we are not a register charity due to Pigeon racing being a sport. The club is used 16 days per year to water birds before sending to races. No other water is used.
Scottish water supposed Estimate 10000 litres per year (10m3) actual 64 litres (0.064m3)

BS is useless, They didn't receive our recorded delivery letters prior to them send out the red lined demand letters so called them up to review our supply, they stated they would call us back, which they didn't. Had to recall and spend another 38 mins only to transfer all paperwork via email.

Am I correct in saying that if we get 100% relief then the fixed charges do not apply

Thanks (0)
to RSW
03rd Nov 2017 10:53


First question: do you have a Scottish Water water supply, or is it in fact your landlords's ? You or the landlord MUST get a water meter installed.

There is no relationship between Rate Relief and water charges.

See this page which we hope will explain things.


Thanks (1)
30th Aug 2018 11:20

That time of year again when Business Stream become abusive with threatening letters to my clients who have already paid.

So many clients do not realise they can move. I have lost the will to live.

Thanks (0)
31st Aug 2018 14:06

Water charges for small business's are mostly illegal, being raised per the ENGLISH 1947 Act [which applied in Scotland until the Scottish Act of 2005]

PLEASE go and read this web site.

This gives a reasonable account of the stupidities that Scottish Water under the direction of SNP leader Surgeon.

The waste of monies is horrendous.

Eur Ing Richard Townsend-Rose MA CEng MICE

PS Two cases so far have been won . . . . and a few more SWBS / Clear [as mud] Business | Water will actully run away if bullied back !

Thanks (1)


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