Landline only? You're probably paying far too much

Landline providers have hiked prices by as much as 41% in the last six years

Landline only? You're probably paying far too much

As more and more telecoms companies bundle broadband with TV and even mobile phones, anyone with just a good old-fashioned landline could be missing out on special offers and discounts.

New analysis by the regulator Ofcom has found all the main landline providers hiked prices by as much as 41% in the last six years. In 2010 you could get a landline for between £12 and £14 a month. Now you'll pay between £17 and £19 a month.

See also: Old phones could be worth up to £1,000

See also: Smartphones are most popular device for internet access

These rising costs might not have affected customers with more than one service as they'll have had discounts such as free broadband or TV, so the overall cost would have remained roughly the same.

But it's a different story if you only want a phone, as Ofcom found little signs of competition in the landline only market. And it's the elderly and vulnerable who are most likely to be in this group, and more reliant on their phone than others.

What can you do to bring down your bills?

It won't always be possible to reduce the costs, hence Ofcom announcing a review to encourage more competition. But until we get the results of the review, it's worth seeing if you can make these changes for yourself or someone you know.

Bundle it with other telecoms services

If you do also have pay TV from a different provider, you might be able to save by combining your phone line with this services.

See if you can switch to a cheaper provider

Whether you bundle or keep the line on its own, use a comparison site to see if there is a better deal out there. If so you can switch, and perhaps even get a new customer discount.

Pay for a year upfront

Though the discounts for paying the full 12 months rental at once have dropped considerably, it's still possible to save this way. Of course, you need to make sure you can afford it.

Go paperless

Another discount is often available if you go paperless, which means you view and manage your bills online.

Review your calls package

Often landlines come with additional call packages, offering free evening or weekend calls. These can make bills cheaper if you use the home phone a lot, but since 70% of people who are landline only also have a mobile phone, it could be cheaper to change your mobile deal instead.

This article is provided by the Money Advice Service.



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