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Home phone costs soar by 29% in three years

20th November 2014 Print

As Virgin Media confirmed that it’s increasing the price of monthly home phone rental by 6.25%,, the price comparison and switching service, has discovered the cost of a landline has increased by more than a quarter (29%) since 2011.

The figure takes into account the latest inflation-busting price hikes announced by the big four providers, BT, Sky, TalkTalk and yesterday’s from Virgin Media. All will increase their prices from December 1st 2014 apart from Virgin Media whose customers will see an increase from February 1st 2015. Monthly line rental will exceed the £16 mark for the first time.

The latest wave of landline price hikes will increase home phone costs by an average of 6% - 4.7% above the current rate of inflation. It means consumers will now pay an extra £42 per year on average for line rental, compared to 2011.

Of the four main providers, BT and Virgin Media are demanding an increase of 6.25%, which will bring the cost of their line rental to £16.99 a month, 14% higher than the current average monthly cost of a landline, which is £14.93. Last month, TalkTalk announced that it was increasing prices by 4.70%, making it the second most expensive. Sky made the biggest overall increase at 6.49% but is still the cheapest of the big four.

While customers out of contract can leave penalty free at any time, those consumers who are mid-contract generally have 30 days to contact their provider once they are informed of the price rise, should they want to terminate their contract.

Ewan Taylor-Gibson, broadband expert at, says: “Rising landline costs are an industry-wide problem that’s getting worse, year after year. Our landlines are, in most cases, a requirement for home broadband, so many of us have little choice but to pay the increase. And it’s all the more irritating when our hardly-used home phones are sitting there, gathering dust.

“While providers are working hard to keep services such as broadband as competitive as possible, we are seeing additional costs creep into other areas. The price hikes especially affect those who tend to be less regular home internet users, such as the older generation, who are forced to swallow the higher cost without seeing any of the benefits.

“If you only use a landline, and aren’t interested in a combined broadband and home phone package, there are some good discounts to be had. Paying annually can help to reduce the cost of your home phone by more than £80 a year if you are willing to switch provider.

“It’s good housekeeping to regularly review your home phone costs, to check when your contract is up and make sure you are getting the best deal. If you also have broadband and TV with your home phone provider, it’s worth doing your research and taking advantage of low introductory offers, as this could make you some significant savings.”