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Beware extra fees when you switch broadband providers

Published 17 April 2016 by

Thinking of switching your broadband provider? You may be looking to a get a better deal on your package or simply want to downgrade to something more affordable. Whatever the reason, having a look at a few other deals could help.

But there are a few things that you should consider first. Depending on your provider, you could face a number of additional charges when attempting to switch to a new deal. To make sure you’re aware of what these are, we’re going to run you through a few.

Charge to keep email address

If you set up an email account with your current broadband provider, you may be charged a fee to keep this account when you switch to a new provider.

Recently, BT announced it will triple the amount it will charge former customers to keep their email address open from £1.60 a month to £5. This means that former BT customers could face paying up to £60 a year to keep their email accounts live.

Whether you’ll be charged for this will depend on your provider. For example, TalkTalk won’t charge you to keep your email address, but it won’t support you with any technical issues either. With Sky, you’ll face no additional charges if you keep your account active.

Email accounts with remote email services like Hotmail or Gmail won’t be affected and can be used with any broadband provider.

Cost of line rental

When you’re browsing the latest deals, you will come across some that seem like they’re great value but on closer inspection are more costly than you first thought. Some deals that advertise themselves as being free for a set period – like ‘the first 12 months’ – aren’t actually free.

This is because you’ll have to pay a monthly charge for the line rental, which can be as much as £17 or more each month. If you need a wireless router as part of a package, you may have to pay to get this delivered and could face additional charges for it to be installed.

Looking for broadband deals that don’t need a phone line? Our blog could help.

Contract termination fees

When you leave a broadband contract before it ends, the standard policy is to pay off whatever’s remaining of your monthly subscription fees. On top of this, you may be charged an additional cancellation fee for leaving your contract before its end date.

If the reason you’re leaving is down to poor service, you may be able to avoid these charges. But whether this fee will be waived or not will depend on the provider you’re dealing with and how serious your complaint is.

Considering switching to fibre broadband? We take a look at whether it’s worth the additional cost.