Getting started with TV and internet

TV and broadband for first time buyers

The basics

When you move into your new home, you’re likely to want to get your TV and internet up and running as soon as possible.

Here are the basics to get your first home set up.

Getting connected

First, you’ll need a broadband connection. If there isn’t already one of these in your new home, or if you want to switch internet service providers (ISP) for a better deal, you’ll need to check to see what providers and type of broadband are available in your area. You can use a service like Uswitch to do this, by just inputting the postcode of your new home.

This sort of search will also tell you if your location can access fibre broadband, and at what speeds.

Cost v Speed

A speed of 10 Mbit/s is generally deemed the minimum, or at least enough to stream Netflix. But depending on what sort of internet user you are, you may want a faster connection than that.

You can compare prices and deals, before selecting a provider and signing up. As well as cost, consider factors such as speed as well. You don’t want slow internet that means you can’t do everything you want to do, but nor do you want to pay over the odds for a service you don't need.

Standard broadband packages use ADSL technology and transmit data over the Openreach phone network for average download speeds of 10-11Mbps. Ultrafast packages use fibre optic cables to reach faster speeds, though they're not available in all parts of the country.

Other considerations

Speed aside, there are several different types of broadband packages you might consider:

  • Broadband and phone: most broadband packages come with a phone line bundled in. If you use your landline, this sort of package can be cost-effective.
  • Broadband and TV: broadband providers offer digital TV packages with their broadband. You can choose a TV package based on what you like to watch.
  • Broadband, phone and TV: having everything you need with one provider makes things easy to manage, but make sure you look into the specifics of what the package includes.
  • Just broadband: this might be for you if you already have a landline and don’t want to pay for digital TV.

Once you have chosen a deal – which you can start doing even before you move – the ISP will post the broadband router and any other equipment and may need to send an engineer to get you set up. This may take up to two weeks, but then you’ll be ready to go.

Click here to download the First Home Steps App

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Don’t forget a TV licence

Even if you don’t tend to watch live shows on a television, you may still need a TV Licence. They’re necessary if you:

  • Watch or record programmes as they’re being shown on TV, on any channel.
  • Watch or stream programmes live on an online TV service (such as All 4, YouTube, Now TV).
  • Download or watch any BBC programmes on iPlayer.

This applies to any device you use, including a TV, laptop, digital box or mobile phone.

A standard TV Licence costs £157.50, which you can either pay in one go or spread the cost. You can buy or licence or find out more on the TV Licensing website.

Click on the sections below to explore what you need to know at each stage of your home buying journey:

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Finding >

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Buying >

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