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Article

An Analysis of Household Perceptions of Water Costs across the United States: A Survey Based Approach

Department of Geography, Environment, and Spatial Sciences, Michigan State University, 673 Auditorium Rd, East Lansing, MI 48824, USA
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Laura Bulgariu
Water 2022, 14(2), 247; https://doi.org/10.3390/w14020247
Received: 6 December 2021 / Revised: 7 January 2022 / Accepted: 8 January 2022 / Published: 15 January 2022
(This article belongs to the Topic Water Management in the Era of Climatic Change)
Research analyzing perceptions of water services has focused on water quality, water safety, and the propensity to consume water from different sources. It has not assessed perceptions of water costs. To address this knowledge gap, this study collected nationally representative survey data from households in the United States about water issues and incorporated these data into logistic regression models. In doing so, our study advances the water and public policy literature in three ways. One, it addresses the need for household resolution information about water issues given the absence of data at this scale in the United States. Two, it creates and utilizes one-of-a-kind survey data to understand the perceptions of household water bills and the drivers of these perceptions. Three, we assess the impact of proposed solutions to improve water affordability on household perceptions of water costs. Model results indicate low-income and households in underrepresented groups were more likely to perceive their water bills to be too high. The perception of water costs also varied geographically. From a policy perspective, model results indicate utilities can positively affect perceptions of water bills via the frequency of water billing and provision of payment assistance programs. View Full-Text
Keywords: water infrastructure; water services; water utilities; water bills; billing frequency; customer assistance programs (CAPS); affordability water infrastructure; water services; water utilities; water bills; billing frequency; customer assistance programs (CAPS); affordability
  • Externally hosted supplementary file 1
    Doi: https://doi.org/10.7910/DVN/0ETQ74
    Link: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ancene.2019.100217
    Description: The data used in this paper may be found on the Harvard Dataverse using the following link: https://doi.org/10.7910/DVN/0ETQ74 Additional information about the SWISSH survey data may be found at this link: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ancene.2019.100217
MDPI and ACS Style

Medwid, L.; Mack, E.A. An Analysis of Household Perceptions of Water Costs across the United States: A Survey Based Approach. Water 2022, 14, 247. https://doi.org/10.3390/w14020247

AMA Style

Medwid L, Mack EA. An Analysis of Household Perceptions of Water Costs across the United States: A Survey Based Approach. Water. 2022; 14(2):247. https://doi.org/10.3390/w14020247

Chicago/Turabian Style

Medwid, Laura, and Elizabeth A. Mack. 2022. "An Analysis of Household Perceptions of Water Costs across the United States: A Survey Based Approach" Water 14, no. 2: 247. https://doi.org/10.3390/w14020247

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