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Adjusting to the Water Rate Adjustment

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Lawton, Ok_The recent rate increase on the utility bill has forced business owners and residents across Lawton to get creative.

Whether it's by installing new water, saving appliances or switching up daily routines, the higher charges have people paying attention to their water usage. However, that might not be such a bad thing. These new techniques may end up saving everyone money in the long run.

When Barbara Boguski opened up her utility bill and saw a higher increase than expected, she was irritated, like so many others. However, in time, she realized that the increase has forced her to make some changes that might just be better in the long run.

"Every time something happens in life that looks like it's a negative oftentimes it truly it is a positive. But sometimes it takes a little while for you to make that adjustment," Boguski said.

Adjusting is exactly what Boguski is doing.  She and her partner are committed to providing top-notch service, so they're not about to let a utility rate increase get in the way of providing an excellent home for their residents.

"Any business owner has to change so when this whole thing came down with the water...which was a little bit of a surprise...we thought to ourselves what are the kinds of things that we really do know about, we've read about that we can change," Boguski said.

Plumbing expert Van Pollard said there are definitely some changes that they can make. They're simple enough for any homeowner to do and they'll even save them money.

"The main thing is on the maintenance perspective actually checking to see if you have any hidden leaks. One of the most notorious places is the toilet," Pollard said. 

One way to check if you have leak is to put dye or food coloring in the tank. If you see the color leak into the bowl, you know you have a problem.

Pollard also said there are a lot of water-saving appliances that you can install. Like a power flush toilet.  "When it flushes it fills up with air and then it pushes the water out. It actually sounds about like the toilets you see on an airplane, you hear the whoosh but it saves a tremendous amount of water when it's being used," said Pollard.

Boguski said they're already looking into changing out toilets, shower heads and faucets with water saving alternatives.  She's happy to make a sacrifice as an owner if it ultimately means saving water and keeping residents happy.

"It's frustrating for us, it's frustrating for people who have homes in this area but maybe everybody can learn from everybody what to do to reduce the amount of water usage," Boguski said.

A few other water saving tips: take shorter showers, don't leave the water running when brushing your teeth, do laundry and run the dishwasher at night and make sure you have them filled to capacity.

Those tips may sound simple but they can save thousands of gallons of water every single month.  Pollard said you can also check if you have a hidden leak by monitoring your water meter. But ultimately, he says regular maintenance is the number one way to avoid unwanted water usage in your household or business.

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