When buying a new build house, a key consideration will be ensuring that it is future-proof. New build internet can vary in technology, affecting the new build broadband speeds that you can get.
We have broken down our article into three sections:
- Best internet for new builds
- Setting up internet in a new build
- Transferring an existing broadband contract to a new build
Best internet for new builds
The best new build internet to get would be Fibre to the Premise (FTTP). This is a next generation, “full fibre” solution, where the fibre optic cable is run from the street all the way into your new build house or apartment.
Traditional broadband (FTTC), the one we have been used to over the last decade, comes through a landline connection, typically a BT landline copper cable.
FTTP is many times faster than FTTC and is vital for future-proofing your new build house to support increasing home digital usage over the next few decades. FTTP speeds range from 100mb to 1000mb, far higher than traditional FTTC speeds, which max out at around 80mb.
Setting up internet in a new build
The process to set up your broadband internet in a new build house will depend on what connection cables have been laid to your new property by the developers.
If it is a standard BT landline copper cable, you will only be able to get FTTC internet. You can choose from a huge range of fibre broadband providers, not just BT Broadband. The first step, however, would be to activate your BT landline. You will need to contact BT to send an engineer out to activate the landline for you; this can take anything from less than a week to three weeks.
If you have a fibre optic cable, you can get faster FTTP internet. Unlike landline copper cables, where there is only one supplier (BT), there are numerous suppliers of fibre optic internet into new build houses. The easiest way to find out which fibre network is to ask your property developer. If you have FTTP from Openreach, you can then get new build internet from a range of FTTP broadband suppliers, not just BT Fibre Broadband (who own the Openreach network). However, if your fibre optic cable is from a niche supplier like Hyperoptic or Virgin Media, then your internet choices will be limited to just that supplier.
Depending on the installation work that the developer has done upfront, activating FTTP internet in a new build house might require an engineer visit to install additional equipment inside your new build property. Otherwise, activation of your broadband could be done remotely by the supplier, and all you have to do is to plug in a router to get internet in your new build house.
If the new build house has neither type of cable, this should ring alarm bells and you should investigate urgently, as laying new landline or fibre optic cable afterwards is not a cheap affair, sometimes running up to tens of thousands of pounds. This is because the road and part of the ground up to the property will have to be dug up to lay cables. You might then have to resort to other ways to get internet, such as 5G internet or satellite internet for your new build house. Both these options are currently slower and more expensive than fibre broadband.
Transferring an existing broadband contract to a new build
If you have an existing broadband contract, you may be able to transfer or port your broadband contract over to the new property. You should call your existing broadband provider to check if they can supply your new build house with broadband. If they are unable to, legally they will have to let you terminate your contract early without having to pay a penalty fee, even if you are in the fixed term part of your contract.
If they can supply your new build property, it is worth checking if there is a faster speed plan they can move you to. However, be careful as upgrading or changing plans might mean resetting the fixed term, locking you into your broadband contract for longer.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on New Build Internet
Still have questions about broadband internet for a new build house? Below is a list of frequently asked questions at FTB Help that we often get asked, relating to setting up internet for a new build
Are new houses built with phone lines?
As FTTP connections become more popular, many new build houses are being built without a copper phone line (i.e. a BT landline). If you would like a landline, it is worth asking your developer, especially early on before they start building, if they would consider laying an additional copper phone line for you. It is much cheaper and easier to lay new cable during construction, than to try to get a phone line after construction is complete.
How do new builds get internet?
New Builds will have one of two types of internet available: Fibre to the Cabinet (FTTC) or Fibre to the Premise (FTTP). The latter is preferable as it offers faster internet, thereby future-proofing your digital needs for the next few decades. However, the type of internet you will get with your new build house will depend on the developer’s building plans. Therefore, it is vital when buying a new build to ask and find out which type of internet cabling is being installed, and also what provider they are going to use.
OpenReach FTTP network is our choice of new build internet, for the flexibility of broadband providers and packages available that you can choose on that network.
Do new builds get Fibre?
Yes, all new builds should have fibre internet, but it is worth asking your developer the type of fibre internet they are installing in your new build house. If they are installing copper landline cables, then you will only be able to get standard fibre internet, up to 80meg in speed. However, if “full fibre” cables (known as fibre optic cables) are installed into your new build property, then you will be able to get speeds up to 1000meg.
Fibre internet won’t work immediately when you get the keys to your new build house. Depending on how much work the developer has done, an engineer from the broadband provider might have to come in to install some final equipment before your new build internet can be activated.
Do new homes have landlines?
Most new homes will still be built with a copper BT landline, but you cannot assume this will always be the case. You should ask your developer for details on the type of cables being run into your new build house; whether it is a phone landline or a fibre optic cable for internet. The type of new build internet that you can get in your new home will depend on the type of cable that is being installed.
If you have a landline installed, you will be able to get a landline phone as well as FTTC standard fibre broadband for your new build internet.
If you have fibre optic cables installed, you will not be able to get a landline phone, but you will be able to get faster FTTP fibre internet. The ideal scenario is if your developer installs both traditional copper cables for a landline, alongside fibre optic cables for FTTP “full fibre” for your new build internet.