Compare broadband deals for shared accommodation and students

Today, broadband is a ‘must-have’ for all households and finding the right broadband package has never been more important. Here’s what you should consider before shopping around for a competitive deal for your shared accommodation or student house.

Today, broadband is a ‘must-have’ for all households and finding the right broadband package has never been more important. Here’s what you should consider before shopping around for a competitive deal for your shared accommodation or student house.

Written by
Sajni Shah
Utilities comparison expert
09 DECEMBER 2019
4 min read
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How can we find the best broadband deal as students?

Broadband access has become an essential for most of us. But for students and those in shared accommodation getting the broadband you need can be a little more complicated, as you’ll have to find a deal that suits people with varying broadband needs. 

Are there any tips for getting the right broadband deal for students or housemates?

Yes. Things to look out for include: 

  • Data allowance or download limit – you’ll probably want to use as much internet as you can, and as often as you’d like. In which case you might want to choose an unlimited data allowance, otherwise you might get stung with extra data charges.
  • Broadband download speed – you’ll need a speed fast enough for the demands of your home. If you have access to fibre broadband you could get superfast broadband speeds of up to 362Mbps. Great for steaming HD video, gaming and surfing the web.
  • Value – although some contracts are for 9 months (making them ideal for short-term usage), it might not always work out to be the best deal compared to 12-18 month contracts. There are also ‘no contract’ broadband deals, which are monthly rolling contracts where you just need to give 30 days’ notice.
  • Time – it will take some time from order to installation, so it’s best to get this booked early so it’s ready for when you move in.

Can we get a 9-month contract broadband deal for our student accommodation?

Yes. In recent years, the big providers have introduced more flexible broadband deals aimed at those living in shared accommodation and students.  
If flexibility is very important to you, there are providers – like Virgin Media and BT for example – who offer 9-month contracts. Although you’ll often find yourself paying more per month for these services.  
In theory, short-term deals should mean cheaper ones. And if you’re a student, having a 9-month contract, as opposed to 12-18 months, may well be of interest.
However, it’s worth remembering that many providers offer incentives to get you to sign up for 12-18 months – these can include free services or reduced price services for a period of time – so it’s a good idea to use our comparison service to review all your options.
If price is your deciding factor, you might find it works out cheaper to pay for the entire period or pay a cancellation fee on a 12-month contract, rather than taking out a short-term specialist package. 

What about rolling-monthly broadband contracts for our shared accommodation?

These are typically rolling contracts that give you flexibility. A disadvantage of this type of deal is that they usually charge larger amounts each month than a longer-term contract.  

How can we avoid extra data charges on our broadband bill?

A good general rule is to only pay for a package with the broadband speeds and download usage limits that you actually need: 

  • If you’re going to be downloading a lot then an unlimited download limit might be better for you, but it will also be the more expensive option.
  • If you’re planning to work or study from home only occasionally then a lower download limit might be sufficient.

Watch out, though, as some broadband providers have usage limits on the cheapest packages that can bring about unwelcome charges, so be sure to pick a usage policy you can remain safely within.

What else should we consider when it comes to broadband in student or shared accommodation?

Here are a few things to think about before you decide on a broadband deal: 

  • You’ll probably need an active phone line – most deals require a line at your property, although there are some providers whose service does not depend on a phone connection. Find out more about getting broadband without line rental.
  • Plan early – it can still take a long time to turn an order into a connection.
  • Someone will need to be in – providers often give ‘windows of time’ for installation - so one of you will need to there when the service is being set up.
  • Bills from the provider are usually in one person’s name – you’ll need to decide who’s going to be responsible for the bills and any set-up costs, then share paying for them equally. Alternatively, you could set up a joint account for everyone to pay into on a monthly basis.

How can I compare broadband deals for students and shared accommodation?

We’ve made comparing broadband deals for student houses and shared accommodation really simple. We have a wide range available, so start a quote with our comparison service and see how much you could save now. 

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