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Standard User UKNetizen
(learned) Tue 23-Sep-14 12:32:21
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Charged for new line but there's one there


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I've started a house move with Plusnet who have said a new line needs to be put in, so they gave us the option of something like £6 a month and a new 24 month contract. Bit of a pain to do this since we only just changed provider and were getting it for £2.50 a month, but hey ho better than paying for a new line up front.

I've since had a chance to inspect the property 2 weeks before we move, and there is in fact a BT socket and line there. Are Plusnet or Openreach mistaken in saying we need a new line? Surely the £120 or whatever cost isn't needed since there's practically nothing for an install engineer to do? Does anyone have experience of getting Plusnet to correct a mistake like this and get put back on the old contract?

I know I need to call them, but currently I can only do this at lunchtime and the last couple of times I've tried it states a 20 min wait on hold. Bit inconvenient in a 30 min lunch break frown
Standard User ian72
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Tue 23-Sep-14 13:46:00
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Re: Charged for new line but there's one there


[re: UKNetizen] [link to this post]
 
Even if a physical line is already in it is the same charge to reactivate a line as to install a brand new line. This is to avoid different customers getting different charges through no fault of their own. So, one standard charge that everyone pays for activating a line.
Standard User tommy45
(knowledge is power) Tue 23-Sep-14 14:14:06
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Re: Charged for new line but there's one there


[re: UKNetizen] [link to this post]
 
Does this existing line have a dial tone, and if you dial 17070 does it give the number for that line ?
If it does then you should not have to pay for a new line, as no engineer callout will be needed to re activate it ,


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Standard User UKNetizen
(learned) Tue 23-Sep-14 14:22:21
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Re: Charged for new line but there's one there


[re: tommy45] [link to this post]
 
I'll have to borrow an analogue phone from work and try it out. I think the previous tenant did not have an active line rental, so who knows perhaps it has been disconnected at the exchange.

It sounds spectacularly unfair for the charge to be the same regardless of the work performed, but that's classic Openreach for you.
Standard User ian72
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Tue 23-Sep-14 15:14:31
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Re: Charged for new line but there's one there


[re: UKNetizen] [link to this post]
 
Is it more fair that someone has to pay £1000 to get a line just because there wasn't one there rather than a more reasonable charge being levied for all new customers?

I understand where you are coming from but this is a way of flattening charges so that no 1 person has to pay a premium. You would probably feel differently if there was no line there and they were charging you market rate for someone to install one.
Standard User tommy45
(knowledge is power) Tue 23-Sep-14 15:30:48
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Re: Charged for new line but there's one there


[re: ian72] [link to this post]
 
IMO it should be BT who swallow the charge for a new line, it isnt like they don't charge enough for line rental is it, (that only goes up sometimes twice in 12mths ) If the line is there and works, then there imo should be no hefty charge involved for activating such lines, as all that is often involved is a few key strokes which doesnt justify the £100+ fee also it's not like the copper line plant hasn't generated a mega profit over the years and will not owe BT anything
Only when it requires an engineer to re connect/renew the line should there be such a charge
Standard User ian72
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Tue 23-Sep-14 15:36:13
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Re: Charged for new line but there's one there


[re: tommy45] [link to this post]
 
Got to remember the split between Openreach and retail. Retail rental charges are going up despite the underlying wholesale not going up. Whereas I think the bulk of the install charge is levied by Openreach.

There are lots of deals out there where you can get installation for free - I know BT do free install if you get line rental and broadband. And many other companies do free installs as well.

For phone on its own I notice BT have this offer currently:
Some customers may have to pay a connection charge. This is £50 for activating an existing line and £65 for installing a new line (online special offer, normally £130). We'll let you know if a charge applies when you start your order.


So, there are offers out there - and this is the providers swallowing some or all of the wholesale charge based on contract sign ups.
Standard User RobertoS
(elder) Tue 23-Sep-14 16:29:42
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Re: Charged for new line but there's one there


[re: ian72] [link to this post]
 
Openreach prices for a new line as of 1/7/14 are £44.49 + Vat, or if a SIM provide with SMPF £31.66+ Vat. Both about £10 less if it was previously LLU MPF.

Restart of a working or stopped line (presumably not previously LLU MPF) is £4.63 + Vat.

SMPF installation or migration £30.83 + Vat. SMPF annual line rental £5.54 + Vat.

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Standard User ian72
(eat-sleep-adslguide) Tue 23-Sep-14 16:35:40
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Re: Charged for new line but there's one there


[re: RobertoS] [link to this post]
 
Hmm, that is a pretty big discrepancy then. No wonder they generally do deals at the retail level.
Standard User TheEulerID
(learned) Tue 23-Sep-14 16:39:54
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Re: Charged for new line but there's one there


[re: UKNetizen] [link to this post]
 
The actual (regulated) wholesale cost from OR for a new line is £44.49. Presumably that's an average cost which could incorporate anything from somebody feeding an order through an automated provisioning system up to and including getting an OpenReach engineer to patch connections across in the exchange, street cabinet up to an including running a drop-wire. My guess is that most provisons are simple, but a few are complex and that's what drives the cost up. It doesn't actually take much to incur £45 of manpower costs.

Anything beyond the £44.49 is the mark-up by the service provide and VAT.
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