Informal Contract Agreement


Informal Contract Agreement


The owner or Contractor, as representative of the Owner, Understands and Agrees with the Following:


The contractor shall notify all applicable utility companies by calling an independent line locating company.  The Contractor shall make no tap or set a meter until inspection and meter fees have been paid by the owner/contractor to Utility Customer Service and a Letter of Authorization will be issued after inspection and meter fees have been received and posted to your account by Utility Customer Service. The contractor must contact the City of Houston Inspection office two (2) working days prior to the meter installation.

In the event that the Contractor cuts any utility company underground lines, it is expressly agreed and understood that the Contractor’s insurance company or bonding surety shall hold harmless the City of Houston from any liability, lost, cost expense and or damage arising out of/or in connection with the work done by the contractor.


Water Meters and Appurtenance Liability


It shall be the Owner(s)/contractor(s) responsibility to secure water meters and appurtenances to prevent damage to such equipment during construction and/or development. Water meters and meter boxes shall not be covered by dirt and/or debris and shall be clearly visible and accessible by the City of Houston personnel.

Owner(s)/contractor(s shall be held liable for removal of dirt and debris and any damage caused to water meter(s) and/or appurtenance during construction and development. Owner(s) /Contractors shall be billed current City of Houston cost for replacement equipment for all items damaged. Owner(s)/contractor(s) water/wastewater account shall be immediately debited charges for equipment upon discovery of damaged equipment.

Water Meter and appurtenance shall include: water meters, electronic equipment, meter boxes, meter lids, curb stops, service lines, taps and saddles. Owner(s)/contractor(s) shall install and replace service lines, curb stops, taps and saddles at their expense. Owner(s)/contractors(s) shall install and replace damaged service lines, curb stops, taps and saddles within 72 hours of receipt of written notification from the City of Houston.


Violation of these guidelines will result in the contractors immediate removal from the City’s approved contractor list and recommendation to red tag the project (stop work) until a new City-approved contractor is selected by the customer.


The Owner Understands and Agrees With the Following:

1.    No work will be initiated until inspection and meter fee have been paid by the owner/contractor to Utility Customer Service. Fees will not be considered as paid until Utility Customer Service has received the fees and posted them to the owner’s account. The only exception will be the fee that is accrued during the inspection phase due to the meter box needing to be exchanged. Balance of incurred charge will be added to the first bill.
2.    The Owner’s Contractor shall make no tap or set a meter until a Letter of Authorization has been issued. The contractor will email a request to Utility Customer Service Inspection’s office to have an Inspector assigned.
3.    The City of Houston will furnish the meter and meter box only; the Owner or the Owner’s contractor shall furnish al materials and labor required for complete installation.
4.    All work will be inspected by the City of Houston Water Maintenance Inspector.
5.    The contractual relationship, if any, between the Owner and the Owner’s contractor shall not impose any burden on the City of Houston with respect to payments due to the Contractor.
6.    All meters or meter boxes which are connected with the City of Houston’s water distribution system will become and remain the sole property of the City of Houston.
7.    Requests for refunds shall not be approved if a Water Main Extension project has been initiated based on this application.
8.    All existing service taps and service lines that will not be used to provide water service to the tract(s) being developed will be cut plugged and abandoned by the Owner/contractor at their expense. Meters and final inspection approval will not be issued until all services have been cut, plugged and abandoned.


Expiration:  All contract agreements will expire by limitation and become null and void if the work authorized by the contract agreement has not commenced within 180 days from the date of the agreement or if work authorized is suspended or abandoned within 360 days.
The Utility official may extend the time for action by the owner/contractor for action by the owner/contractor for a period not to exceed 180 days on written request by the owner/contractor showing that circumstances beyond the control of the owner/contractor to complete the work specified. Written request for extension should be addressed to Utility Customer Service, 4200 Leeland, Houston, Texas, 77023. No agreement may be extended more than once. If extension request is not made and posted on or prior to the contract agreement expiration date, the agreement will be considered expired by limitation.  An expired contract agreement may not be reinstated.  Customers must reapply and pay appropriate fees. The owner/contractor may cancel the agreement and receive a refund of fees paid, subject to the following stipulations:


  • No request for refund will be accepted after the permit (plus any extension granted) has expired.
  • No refund will be made for fees of $27.52 or less.
  • For fees of greater than $27.52, the city will retain the first $27.52, and ten percent of the remaining amount.