Moving home is a busy and stressful experience at the best of times, with a great deal of organisation required to make everything run smoothly. Unfortunately, there’s now something else you need to add to the list: checking broadband speed. Thankfully this one is fairly simple, though internet access can have a surprising impact for home buyers, renters, landlords and sellers so it’s something everyone should consider.
Broadband and homes
Broadband is becoming increasingly important, to the point it can potentially impact sale and letting prices. A recent survey carried out by Broadband Genie found that 78% would be put off renting or buying a property if it had slow broadband, and 28% would be willing to pay more for a home with fast internet. Despite this, only 30% of respondents said they research broadband prior to renting or purchasing their current home.
Other studies have also found that broadband can have a surprising effect on home purchases, rentals and sales. A report by the London School of Economics examined 15 years of data and found that house prices increased by an average of 3% when broadband speed doubled. It’s especially concerning for landlords and sellers in the countryside, as a study from Savills highlighted that 70% of landlords said that slow broadband speeds were limiting their ability to let properties in rural areas.
What this all means is that whether you’re selling a home, looking for somewhere to buy or rent or are a landlord considering a rental opportunity, broadband is something you must take into consideration.
Checking broadband speeds
Checking potential broadband performance is easy (and free) but there are a few things you should know in order to get the most accurate information.
First off, any ISP can check broadband coverage. This can be done via the web site or by calling up the support or sales line. However an ISP is only going be interested in telling you about the services they provide. That’s fine if your intention was to stick with the same ISP, but it can be a good idea to get a broader, unbiased overview.
Finally, when you sign up for a new broadband deal your ISP should always provide an accurate speed estimate, usually as a range showing the potential lowest and highest speed. Keep a record of this. Any provider that’s signed up to Ofcom’s voluntary code of practice must investigate complaints about speed as a technical support issue. If they are unable to fix the problem, you are permitted to switch to a cheaper deal or cancel the contract without charge.
You can check the broadband speed of property on Rightmove via the property listing or by clicking here.
Matt Powell is writing on behalf of broadband comparison site Broadband Genie; you can find out more about broadband at www.broadbandgenie.co.uk.