A spokeswoman for the Minister for the Environment, Phil Hogan, has rejected reports that one third of households are not suitable for water meters.
An executive manager for Dublin City Council, Tom Leahy, is reported to have said that one third of houses in Dublin are unsuitable for meters and that this number is reflected countrywide, totalling about 533,000 households.
These houses would be liable for a flat-rate water charge which would not reflect their water usage. Houses built between the 1940s and 1960s and apartments would be the most likely to fall into this category.
However, the spokeswoman today rejected this claim, saying that a maximum of 300,000 houses are likely to be without meters after the initial installation plan, and that this number would decrease as the metering process continued.
She said the meters will be installed in the quickest and easiest homes first.