How to save money on your home phone and broadband

Fancy saving a few hundred pounds on your phone and internet costs? Shopping around for better home phone and broadband deals can do just that.

Best ways to save on landline and broadband bills

Home phone and broadband bills can be expensive, so we’ve pulled together a few tips to help keep your bills low.

  • Switch supplier. Sticking with the same broadband and home phone provider can be expensive. uSwitch reports instances where bills have jumped 400% when a contract was rolled over!

The average household can save £69 on their broadband bills by switching when their contract ends.

Source: uSwitch

  • Match your deal to your needs. Otherwise you might spend money on data you don’t use, or get charged for going over your limit. If you’re not sure how much you use, ask your supplier.
  • Should you get line rental and broadband together? In most cases you need a landline to get broadband, but not all. Take into account your landline costs when looking at broadband prices as many seemingly cheap deals require you to take out expensive line rental.
For more tips on how to save money on phone and broadband deals, visit MoneySavingExpert.

Switching your home phone and broadband – the basics

It’s never been easier to change home phone and broadband provider and you could save yourself hundreds of pounds on your bills.

The length of time your switch will take depends on which provider you’re switching from and to. You can ask your new supplier for more details. You’re unlikely to spend any time without a connection.

Don’t forget:

  • Use more than one comparison website. They don’t all show the same deals and providers, so the more you check, the more likely you are to find a cheaper deal.
  • Look at the monthly and yearly costs in the breakdown. Know what you’re buying to avoid any unwelcome surprises when your bill shows up.
  • Watch out for promoted products. Many comparison sites take a commission when you switch through them. That means they might try to nudge you to pick a product over another, even if it’s not the best deal. Be aware of these tactics.
  • Which provider is best? You can find the latest customer satisfaction ratings for the large providers on the Choose website.

‘Gaining provider led’ or ‘cease and re-provide’?

There are two ways to switch broadband: ‘gaining provider led’ and ‘cease and re-provide’. The one you pick depends on which provider you’re switching to and from.

  • If you are switching to or from a cable provider such as Virgin Media, you will need to follow the ‘cease and re-provide’ process.
  • If you are moving between broadband providers that use BT’s Openreach network (such as BT, EE, Sky and TalkTalk), you will use the ‘gaining provider led’ system.

Switching broadband using a gainer-led process

Step one – When can you switch?

Before you decide to switch, make sure your current contract has expired or you may be liable for early exit fees.

Most contracts last between 12 and 24 months and once they’re finished, most providers let you cancel free of charge, with 30 days notice.

Step two – Find out what’s available

You can do this by entering your postcode into a price comparison website. We recommend using:

Step three – Compare the packages available and switch

Once you’ve entered your postcode, you’ll be shown a list of options. Compare the different packages and pick the best one for you.

Text box: Remember not to just look at price. Match the deal to your needs and check whether line rental is included.

You can switch directly through a price comparison website, or you can chose to get in touch with your new supplier directly.

Once you’ve done this your new supplier will confirm that the switch is in motion and manage everything. They will keep you informed about switch dates.

If you change your mind, you have 14 days to cancel the switch before your new contract starts.

Switching broadband using a cease and re-provide system

Step one – Can you switch?

Make sure your contract has expired and you can usually switch without having to pay exit fees.

Most contracts last between 12 and 24 months and once they’re finished, most providers let you cancel free of charge, with 30 days’ notice.

Step two – Find out what’s available

You can do this by entering your postcode into a price comparison website. We recommend using:

Step three – Compare the packages available and switch

Once you’ve decided which contract you’d like to switch to, you have to contact your current and future provider and tell them you’re leaving/ joining.

It’s up to you to work out when your old contract ends and when the new one starts. Do your best to coordinate end and start dates when speaking to your new and old broadband providers.

If you change your mind, you have 14 days to cancel the switch before the new contract starts.

Save money on your landline

Although more and more people rely on mobile phones and home phone contracts are often bundled with broadband packages, there are still ways to cut your landline costs. Here are some of the best tips.

Looking to save on your mobile phone bill? Read more in How to save money on your mobile phone.

  • Pay by direct debit. It’s usually the cheapest way to pay and it means you won’t forget.
  • Avoid peak calling times. Check when your supplier charges most for calls and do your best to avoid these times.
  • Do you qualify for a social tariff? Some providers have cheaper tariffs for those who are struggling financially, or have a certain disability. Speak to your supplier for more information.
For more information on saving money on your landline, visit MoneySavingExpert.

Struggling to pay your broadband or phone bill?

If paying bills is an issue, get in touch with your supplier. They may be able to put together a repayment plan that works for you.

Find out more on the Citizens Advice Bureau website.