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New Accounts

December 6, 2014: The Board has approved ordinance No. 2014-3, repealing sections 6.02.01, 6.02.02 and 6.02.03 related to tenant accounts. This change discontinues the practice of processing tenant applications for water service and moves the responsibility of putting the tenant’s name on the water bill to the owner. The district will send out a notice to property owners and tenants of the changes, how to proceed with implementation, and timeline for implementation.

Where To Apply

Apply Online:
Click here to complete our application form online.

Apply at the Administrative Office at:

66575 Second Street
Desert Hot Springs, CA 92240

When To Apply

During lobby hours:

  • Monday - Thursday:
    · 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
  • Friday:
    · 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
  • Saturday - Sunday:
    · Closed

What You Will Need

  • Property Owners
    · Must provide proof of ownership.
  • Property Renters
    · Bring a copy of your rental agreement.
  • Government issued photo ID such as:
    · driver’s license
    · passport
    · military ID

Account Deposit

Residential and commercial customers with good credit and payment history with MSWD may not be required to pay a deposit. Customers without payment history with the District are required to pay a deposit of $82 for water service. All water and/or sewer deposits accrue interest at the rate set by law. If acceptable payment history is maintained, deposits will be refunded after one year of service, including interest. A deposit is required from all tenants when applying for service and are payable by check or cash only.

Costs Of Service

MSWD customers can readily control their water bill by controlling their consumption. You can find cost details on the cost of water service page and how to read your water bill.

Sewer charges are based on residential, multifamily or business category. Find details on the cost of sewer service.

For both water and sewer service, the monthly fixed charge will apply to all accounts, whether the meter service is active or not. Why? Once connected to the water or sewer system, capacity to service your property must be permanently available. Ongoing maintenance and costs associated with that capacity must be recovered rather than spread to other active rate payers.

My bill seems higher than normal…how come?

There are many reasons that bills are high. Following are a few scenarios you may want to check prior to calling customer service and, potentially, triggering a service call charge (unless the meter has been misread).

  1. Leaks: The most common reason a bill is higher than normal is leaks. Leaks can go undetected for days, weeks or even years.

    Sometimes leaks are intermittent, such as toilets that don’t seal properly and run for a few minutes then stop. Sometimes leaks are constant, such as irrigation that is leaking underground and unseen.

    If you have a leak on your property, it is better to find out as soon as possible. If the leak is substantial, waiting for a customer service agent to come out to your property may result in significant water loss and charges to you.

    A simple leak test can be performed to assist you in determining whether you have a leak. Here are the steps:

    1. Make sure there is no water running in your house, i.e. faucets, irrigation, washing machine, etc.
    2. Go to your meter box and lift the lid.
    3. Most of the meters in MSWD are digital and equipped to detect the slightest amount of water passing through.

      Conversely, if water is not passing through the meter, it is virtually impossible for the reading on the register to change.

      To determine if a fractional amount of water is passing through the meter, watch for the Fractional Reading (“Fr”) on the dial. If the Fr displays a number, water is passing through the meter.

    4. If water is passing through the meter, double check to ensure that all water-using devices are off. If the “Fr” is still showing consumption, you likely have a leak.
  2. Changes in season: Changes in season trigger changes in irrigation and water use in general. Many MSWD accounts demonstrate a summer “curve” as the weather heats up. If you have a landscaping service, they will often increase your irrigation to ensure your landscaping survives the summer months.
  3. Incorrect meter reading: Almost all meters in MSWD’s service area are read via radio signal. These meters are highly accurate and reading errors are rare. Both low and high reads within a set threshold will prompt a re-read by one of our team members. If a customer service agent detects water running, he will attempt to make contact with someone on the property or leave a door hanger.
  4. Rates increase: Rate increases are implemented by the Board of Directors to address increasing costs, but not without significant notice to all customers. These rate actions, and associated noticing, must be done in accordance with state law.