Is line rental saver worth it? Should I pay for a year upfront?

Line rental saver

Question

My broadband provider lets me pay for a whole year’s worth of line rental upfront, right now. Should I go for it? Is this a good deal?

Bob T, via email

Our expert Kim says...

Probably, yes.

The option to pay a whole year's worth of line rental upfront - often known as 'line rental saver' - is offered by quite a few broadband providers. It means you pay a lump sum when you sign up, then get significantly lower bills each month.  

A tiny handful of providers even let you pay for a whole year of broadband itself upfront. 

Today's best broadband deals

Sky
TalkTalk
Post Office
SSE
BT
Broadband Unlimited Fast Broadband Unlimited Broadband + Weekend Calls Unlimited Broadband - Line Rental Only Superfast Fibre + Weekend Calls
£235.95 Total first year cost £204.00 Total first year cost £204.00 Total first year cost £282.00 Total first year cost £369.87 Total first year cost
£18.00 p/m for 12 months £19.95 setup costs 12 month contract £17.00 p/m for 12 months 12 month contract £17.00 p/m for 12 months 12 month contract £21.00 p/m for 1 month £30.00 setup costs 1 month contract £29.99 p/m for 18 months £9.99 setup costs 18 month contract
Average speed 10 Mb Average speed 11 Mb Average speed 11 Mb Average speed 11 Mb Average speed 50 Mb
Pay as you go Pay as you go Weekend calls inc. Pay as you go Weekend calls inc.
£75 Prepaid Mastercard® Offer ends 21/06/18 No Price Rises! Offer ends 12/07/18 Unlimited Broadband Offer ends 30/09/18 Unlimited downloads Offer ends 30/06/18 £120 BT Reward Card - see BT's website for further details Offer ends 21/06/18
Go
Call Sky on 0800 759 1469
Mon to Sun 8am-10pm
Go
Call TalkTalk on 0800 049 7843
Mon to Thurs 8am-10pmFri to Sun 8am-9pm
Go Go
Call SSE on 0330 053 5146
Mon - Fri 8am-8pmSat 8am-2pm
Go
Call BT on 0800 783 5390
Mon to Sun 8am-6.30pm

So to answer your question… is it worth it? Let's take a look at the pros and cons.

Pros:

  • It cuts your monthly bills down by quite a lot, or gets rid of them entirely in some cases.
  • Paying upfront usually comes with an extra discount - BT gives you one month's line rental free when you pay upfront using a debit or credit card.
  • You'll be immune from any price increases on line rental for the year. (Though not from rises on broadband or other services you add, like TV.)

Cons:

  • It's a lot to pay all in one go - especially if it includes broadband.
  • If you move out or switch providers before the year is up, you may be out of pocket.
  • It's non-refundable, apart from in special circumstances. Once you've decided to pay upfront, you can't go back to monthly payments until the year is up.
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Conclusion

Money-wise, yes, paying for a year's worth of services upfront is totally worth it. You'll likely get a discount, and it lets you skip any price increases for another year.

So long as you can afford to pay it right now, and if you're certain you'll be with this provider for the next 12 months, we say go for it. If not, though, it's better to be cautious and stick with normal monthly bills.

 

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