The Cabinet has approved the introduction of excessive charges for households using more than 1.7 times their water allowance.
The increased allowance was agreed between Fianna Fáil and the Government after the 2016 election.
The first warning notices will be issued to households from June this year.
However, no charges will be levied until next year.
This is a year later than was initially anticipated.
It’s estimated that around two thirds of the households using more than their allowance are doing so due to leaks.
Some 890,000 homes have had water meters installed.