New phone line installation: get it for free

get a phone line

Getting a new phone line installed can cost £130... or nothing at all.

In this guide we look at how to get the 'nothing at all' option.

There are two ways: taking broadband and home phone from a provider with a free line installation special offer or circumventing getting a new line installed, by using the existing equipment.

Let's start with the first option, or skip ahead to the second.

Get a new phone line

Most providers offer a free or much cheaper connection to those willing to sign up for 12 or 18 months.

Since so many providers can now offer phone line installation, there's no need to compromise on the broadband package, either.

Getting a new line for free

Here are the details, from the cheapest installation to the most expensive.

Price The deal
BT Free Free with any broadband or TV deal, otherwise £50 to £130.
Get the offer here.
Primus Free Free when you take broadband, otherwise £59.
Get the offer here.
TalkTalk Free Free with broadband. Be aware that new line orders may not be eligible for some of TalkTalk's other special offers. Get the offer here.
Sky Free Free with broadband or TV. Get the offer here.
Tesco £35 £35 with all broadband deals, see the deal here.
Virgin Media £49.95 £49.95 for everyone, find out more about the offer here.
Plusnet £49.99 Plusnet phone is only available with broadband. Get this here.
EE £60 Applies to all new line installations, find out more here (pdf).
Post Office £60 Get this here.
BT Basic
(cheap phone line)
£130 Those on BT's social tariff who need a new line must pay the full amount although, unlike everyone else, they can split it into five monthly payments. More info here.

These prices were correct at the byline date of this article.

We always keep an eye on them and update as soon as we see any changes but it's always worth clicking through and double checking with the provider before committing to a contract.

Do you need a new line?

As you can see above, new phone lines can be an expensive hassle.

But, as we noted in the introduction, they're also often a needless expensive hassle, because most people don't actually need a new phone line installed.

Follow the white socket

Most homes will have a BT socket somewhere: look for a small white socket, which may have a BT logo, either on a wall or by the front door.

Don't need a new line?
You can still cut call costs
Compare phone here
Cost cutting tips here
Primus line rental here

In general, those that can plug a home phone into the wall and hear a dial tone shouldn't need to pay a fee.

Instead, any new phone and broadband provider will be able to transfer the line to their service free of charge.

If you can't see a socket but are aware that the previous residents did have a BT line, a new phone provider may be able to help you to find it.

Note also that phone sockets similar to BT's are installed in some instances so, depending on the supplier, BT may charge a reconnection fee even when the house does have a white socket.

That's only the case in a small minority of households but it's just worth being aware of.

New line checklist

Homes that are very new - for example, in a building newly converted into flats - where a line has never been installed may need a new phone line.

More commonly, engineers will need to reconnect an existing line because it has been seriously damaged at some point.

Damage can occur during renovations and is most likely to affect the socket.

Finally, households that have been disconnected for non payment in the past will be liable to pay a reconnection fee to get their phone line back.

For more technical information on moving back to BT see our article here.

Comments

1
2 June 2014
Maria

I have got a BT socket, but never had a landline! Can you tell me what I should do please?

2
28 May 2014
chan

Thank you so much, I've been looking for a comparison of phone line connections for a while!

3
22 May 2014
Kev

I'm looking to have a phone line fitted to a static caravan. There is no line to the caravan at present, and the mobile signal is poor, so that's not an option.

The site is a bit off the beaten track, but a few other caravans on the site have phone lines fitted.
No matter who I contact, it comes down to Openreach installing the line, and they are quoting over £1,700 to install, as it requires digging a trench to lay new cable etc.

There has to be a cheaper way to get a line installed from the exchange, 30 metres away, to the caravan.
Please help.

4
12 November 2013
Claire

Same question as sara. I am currently with Virgin Media and moving on to Talktalk and still they are asking me to pay a £30 connection fee. What is that all about?

20 December 2013
KB

That's because Virgin Media provide their phone service over their cable network and TalkTalk provide their service over a BT phone line.

5
31 October 2013
sara

What if I have a phone line (currently with TalkTalk) and want to switch provider but EE are telling me I don't have one and I need to pay them £60 for the installation of the new one?! I should add that I called EE from my landline number!

6
3 August 2013
M Mouse

Might also be worth mentioning Plusnet offers line installation for £49.00 with their broadband service (either ADSL or fibre).

11 August 2013
Choose team

Thanks for the tip! We've now added Plusnet's new line prices to the table above.

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