So you’re halfway through your broadband (and potentially, TV) contract and the date of your house move finally comes round. Can you continue with your current broadband contract at your new address or do you have to cancel and start a new one? Also, what charges are you likely to incur?
Resolver’s guide will help you understand the process and what you need to do.
If you’re with Virgin Media
Let Virgin Media know once you’ve got a confirmed date and check whether it covers the area you’re moving to.
If it does, then you can move and it’ll transfer your contract to the new address. You may need to arrange for an engineer to come and install a line to your new home but once that’s happened you shouldn’t have any further problems. There’s a small admin fee for the move (currently £20) but your monthly billing and service should just continue as before.
If Virgin Media doesn’t cover the area you’re moving to then you’ll have to cancel your contract. If you’re still within the minimum contract period then, unfortunately, it’s likely that you’ll be charged an Early Disconnection Fee (EDF). This can be quite substantial depending on what’s left to run on your minimum contract term and what package you’ve subscribed to Virgin Media for. The page with details of their EDF charges can be found here.
If you don’t have long to go on your contract and have been a long-standing customer Virgin Media may exercise some good will and waive the EDF so it’s worth contacting Virgin Media to plead your case.
Having cancelled with Virgin Media, don’t forget to organise a new provider to set up its service in a timely fashion for your moving-in date to ensure you’re not left without coverage.
If you’re moving to or away from Hull
Kingston upon Hull is different to the rest of the UK in that it has a single provider, Kingston Communications, that doesn’t use the BT (now Openreach) cables. If you’re moving to the area covered by Kingston Communications then you’ll need to take out a contract before you move in to allow it to set up your service in a timely fashion.
If you’re moving away from Hull, you won’t be able to take your service with you as Kingston Communications only operates there. In that case you need to give 30 days’ notice as a minimum. Fortunately there is no early termination fee so you won’t incur any additional charges as a result of your move. Don’t forget to organise a new provider to set up service in your new home for your moving-in date.
If you’re using mobile broadband
This has grown more popular in recent years with the launch of 5g services. If you’re moving to a location with good coverage from your current provider then you’ll just be able to move with no problem other than notifying your provider so it has your correct details.
If you’re moving somewhere with poor coverage from your current provider then you may need to cancel. You may be charged for the outstanding months of your current minimum contract period. You’ll need to use your provider’s coverage checker to see if you’ll get good indoor coverage at your new address, get in touch to find out what charges you may incur.
If your mobile phone contract is also with that provider then it may be more flexible in apply charges, so call to discuss your options.
For most other broadband providers
Other than those mentioned above you’ll be using the Openreach network (previously BT) for your broadband (unless you’re using something exotic like satellite broadband).
All other broadband providers such as Plusnet, Sky, BT and Vodafone run services over this infrastructure, whether you’re getting superfast fibre broadband or more pedestrian (slow) ADSL. As a result, you’re almost certainly going to be able take your contract with you. This will mean you’re not going to incur early cancellation fees although you may have to a pay a small admin fee to make the switch.
Depending on whether the address you’re moving to already has broadband services connected to it you might have to arrange for an installation in time for your moving day – there may be a charge for this. Call your current broadband provider and it’ll be able to check on this for you and arrange everything to hopefully, ensure the move of service happens seamlessly.
The one wrinkle in this process will be whether the type of service you’re currently using is available at your new location. For example, if you’re currently using superfast fibre broadband and that’s not available at your new address then you’ll have to switch to slower ADSL unfortunately – usually the monthly price for this is cheaper and most providers will allow you to switch to a cheaper subscription package as long as you honour the minimum contract period, but some may force you to take out a new minimum contract term however.
Conversely, you may find you’re moving from somewhere you couldn’t get fibre broadband to an address with this option. In this case you may want to upgrade your package at that point to take advantage of the higher speeds available.
With all this arranged in advance you shouldn’t have any problems – and should find you’ve got a smooth transition of service from your old address to your new one. But there can be problems, as with anything, so make sure you double-check all the documentation sent by your provider just in case.
Problems with service provision or billing when you move home? Then make a complaint – Resolver can help for free.