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CostHelper > Home and Garden  > Plumbing & Waterproofing > Sewer Connection

Sewer Connection Cost


How Much Does a Sewer Connection Cost?

 
low costTypical Agency Fees: $1,500-$15,000+average costInstall Private Sewer Lateral: $1,000-$40,000+high costTotal Costs: $2,500-$55,000+
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There are two main expenses to consider when connecting to a public sewer line: the fees charged by the sewer agency and the cost of having a plumber or contractor install a private sewer lateral, which is the section of underground pipe connecting the household wastewater plumbing to the public sewer line.

Typical costs:

  • Sewer district connection fees vary by location but typically cost $1,500-$15,000, and can be $15,000-$50,000 or more if a new main sewer line needs to be installed in the area. If property owners want to connect to an existing public sewer, they are typically charged for what is calculated as their fair share of the costs for creating and maintaining that system. For example, the Village of Key Biscayne, FL estimates minimum permit and connection fees of $1,573 for a single-family residence of 3,000 square feet or less; $2,133 for 3,001-5,000 square feet; and $3,421 for a residence of more than 5,000 square feet. The City of Portland, OR[1] charges $4,844 per branch (most residential properties require just one branch) and a $4,335 sewer system development fee, plus sewer line charges of $1.29 per assessable square foot of residential property within 100' of the sewer line.
  • Installation of a new private sewer lateral can cost $1,000-$40,000 or more depending on the distance from the house to the sewer line, the terrain, access to the property, local rates and local code requirements (such as removing an old septic system). For example, the City of McMinnville, OR[2] estimates a typical private sewer lateral costs $1,500-$2,500, while Butte County, CA[3] estimates the typical cost at $4,000-$6,000, including septic tank pumping and decommissioning.
Related articles: Sewer Line Replacement, Septic System, PVC or CPVC Pipes, Backflow Preventer

What should be included:
  • Connecting to a municipal sewer typically involves an application process; permits; hiring a contractor to install lines from the sewer line to the residence; trenching from the sewer line to the home; inspections and approvals by the local building department and/or other agencies; refilling the trench; and properly destroying any existing septic system (if one was used prior to sewer connection). Butte County, CA lists its sewer connection steps[4] .
Additional costs:
  • Once the house or property is connected to the public sewer system, there are ongoing sewer user fees. These vary significantly by location, and may be either a flat fee or charges on the amount of water used by the household. For example, instead of raising its flat annual fee from $600 to $840, Montgomery Township[5] in New Jersey switched in 2009 to charging based on water usage, estimating an annual cost of $737 for a two- to three-person household with efficient appliances. The city of Boston[6] charges $7.414 per 1,000 gallons for daily water usage up to 19 cubic feet, with the fee gradually increasing as more water is used; the city estimates a typical annual charge of $867 for a family using 180 gallons a day or $2,997 a year for a household using 600 gallons of water daily. Depending on the location, sewer fees may be billed monthly, quarterly or semi-annually.
Shopping for a sewer connection:
  • Each public sewer has its own connection fees and regulations; contact the local sewer department for details. For example, Cumberland County, VA answers FAQs about its water and sewer connection requirements[7] .
  • Installing a private sewer lateral can be done by a plumber, sewer contractor or general contractor; get a variety of quotes because they may differ in both price and available equipment. The City of Portland, Oregon, provides a brochure on installing a private sewer line[8] .
  • Check to see if the sewer department maintains a list of local contractors. Or search for local members of the Plumbing Heating Cooling Contractor Association[9] .
  • Ask for a detailed bid (not just an estimate) in writing, clearly describing the work to be done and materials to be used; who is paying for and obtaining required building permits, the total price for the project; and estimated start and finish dates.
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External Resources:
  1.  www.portlandoregon.gov/bes/article/71590
  2.  www.ci.mcminnville.or.us/city/departments/wastewater-services-conveyance-system-sewer-l...
  3.  www.buttecounty.net/Administration/~/media/County%20Files/AdminOffice/Public%20Internet...
  4.  www.buttecounty.net/Administration/~/media/County%20Files/AdminOffice/Public%20Internet...
  5.  www.montgomery.nj.us/depts/finance/FactsaboutSewerFeesUpdated.pdf
  6.  www.bwsc.org/services/rates/rates.asp
  7.  www.cumberlandcounty.virginia.gov/publicworks/docs/UtilitiesConnectionFlyerFINAL.pdf
  8.  www.portlandoregon.gov/bes/article/298203
  9.  www.phccweb.org/applications/ContractorReferral/search.cfm?navItemNumber=532&ewebToken&...
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