Home broadband world of pain

So I moved. Next door, literally, just a much larger flat.

These home broadband people, I'd been with them five years already.

No major issues, broadband stable / reliable.

But you would not believe how they could stuff up a simple home move.

Should I name them? The company has got two letters the same and it falls between D and F.

I told them I was moving and they prepared the migration

Then I was approached by a rather distressed elderly resident from the flat above the one I've moved into (which is still in the basement if the house) he was saying he'd had a letter from his provider that he was about to be cut off.

He asked me to contact them so I did with the letter but without his password they wouldn't deal with me. I said to them well can't you phone this guy (at this point I wasn't aware what the problem was) and they said they could not dial out to customers.

BTW that company has two words the same that rhyme with "walk" and I've heard Mickey Mouse things about them.

So I get on the phone to my provider to check in the address and turns out they were going to put my connection into the wrong flat so in realising the error they said they would fix it and at least the guy upstairs wasn't cut off.

I went down to one of their stores in town to ask them what they thought about this mess and if they could hurry up the process because I was now in the new property but there was still no access to anything.

Got one of those youngsters "I've been doing this fifteen years / I know everything" and TBH it didn't matter what I said although I DID say it (I don't want another contract) several times, he was looking at the screen going tsk tsk tsk I can't see what it is they've done here, your postcode is that, right? And that's your address, right?

Yes.

So he said that Is "have to have" a brand new contract and set about printing one out. If course that meant I'd have to wait three weeks before broadband and landline were activated.

Three weeks without any streamed football?!

So now we're at that point where the equipment has arrived.

I've got a filter splitter and three points (single boxes).

One is Openreach, one says NTL and a third one is at the bottom of the lounge wall next to a mains socket a fair few feet away from the other two.

Now I know how it was set up before and I've out everything in the correct place set-up wise, not just that, between the three boxes I have tried every possible combination possible.

You guessed it. Nothing. The activation time has passed six hours ago, the router is sat there flashing on and off and the phone is dead.

Also I found out that in December thus company removed £90 instead of the usual £30 monthly charge, I wonder what justified that and then I remembered they did this a few years back and I complained and they said it was their mistake and refunded me.

So later this morning I have to go to a friend's house to use her phone to call these people up to find out what's going on with this.

You can imagine it, well... we'll have to send out an engineer... the earliest I can do for you is ..

I'm not happy with this at all so as that agent in the town store set this new thing up that I didn't want (I signed for it though and accept that's the crux), what recourse do I have in telling them I'll rip it up and find someone reputable?

Because I'm at the end of my tether with them, I've had no landline or broadband for a month down to their incompetence and they've now sent emails saying your broadband is up and running and ready to use!

AND an email saying your bill is ready to view!

What! You want money for doing nothing!?

Thoughts?
 

wongataa

Well-known Member
When you move starting a new contract is normal. You were contracted for service at your previous address. When you move you break that contract so prevent exit fees etc ISPs will keep providing you at the new address providing you start a new contract with them. You are prefectly free to pay off the contract and change to a new supplier. It doesn't matter if you are moving to a flat next door or across the country because it is tied to your address changing.

Regarding the lack of service you will have to keep complaining to the ISP. Put in a formal complaint. The box you will want to plug the router into is the Openreach one. That is where the phone line comes into the property. The NTL box is for cable. Virgin Media bought NTL out. The other phone socket will be an extension from one of the others.

I would plug a wired phone into the Openreach socket to see if there is a dial tone. That would indicate whether the line is actually active. To remove any possible problems from any internal wiring that your ISP does not support remove the faceplate from the phone socket and plug things into the phone socket behinf the cover - the test socket. If nothing works then it is definitely a problem due to your supplier.
 
Plugged phone directly into Openreach.

Dead line.

I'll phone them this morning but as for "paying off" to leave, no chance.

The way I have everything I want set up with them, now TV and BT Sport add ons is £98pm.

Right now I could get all that and more for £81 if I choose to go back to Sky.

Might be worth the wait
 

noiseboy72

Distinguished Member
My mother had a similar problem when she moved house. The new place had been empty for a year or so, as the old lady who lived there was in a care home but it was still maintained and with an active phone line but had never had broadband. When we tried to get the line provisioned, Sky told us that the previous owner would need to terminate their contract. We contacted the previous owners solicitor but they knew nothing about a contract and were unaware that the line was live, so we agreed to get a fresh line provisioned and any contract would lapse.

At this point the neighbours came round to say they had had a phone message to say their telephone line would be cut off on the date my mother's new line was due to be installed. A few panic calls later and the truth became clear. The lines were somehow swapped between the houses and the billing addresses incorrect. They had been paying each others bills for years!

We've left them to sort out the mess and Openreach have fitted the new line and new sockets. I think a lot of the issues are due to the many levels of companies involved, not all of which seem to talk to one another!!

Best advice is to stay calm on the phone to them, to ask them to explain any charges clearly but not to come over aggressive or abusive. That way they are more inclined to help you.
 
I can do calm. I'm not aggressive by nature anyway. But I'm brutally honest and direct. Either they sort this out to my satisfaction or I am free to leave.

Also because I am classed as a vulnerable adult if they want to haggle about paying them off I can just pass it on to a support worker.
 
To add, this is not the first time I have been treated badly by a communications company and the reason I won't go anywhere near BT.

So about seven years ago it was before I went into supported living I had a flat and had ordered services from BT and I'll try and keep this short and to the point.

The equipment arrived two days after the activation date and the parts supplied would not fit the sockets, I'm talking cables and stuff. I couldn't use the internet and that would have shown to them in the data usage.

I got Sky in then I remember and they said to take over the line they had to wait it get permission from BT!

Anyway BT kept sending bills for internet use blah blah blah which if course didn't get paid as I'd cancelled their direct debit.

I told them I wasn't paying for something I'd never used, course over months the amount went up to around £1300 I think it was.

Maisie (a support worker) was dealing with it while I was in supported living but after I left there and got another flat through debt collection agencies they hounded me until I got social services and autism parties involved then finally they dropped it, we even said, well we did actually, we wrote to BBC Watchdog to have my case put on there.
 

noiseboy72

Distinguished Member
I'm going to try very hard not to judge - or to preach..

Without commenting on your individual circumstances, it's important that when a contract is agreed - whether in person at a shop by signing papers or just by agreeing to terms online that the person understand what they are buying into, including termination, notice periods, credit etc.

Bad things to do:
  1. Cancelling Direct Debits. The debt will remain and will continue to increase. Failure to pay this off will result in credit score issues, county court judgements etc.
  2. Becoming aggressive, abusive or "direct" with call centre staff. Remember, quite often they are not empowered to make the decisions you want them to take and would need to escalate the problem to a manager. Therefore, you want them to be your friend - your ally. Saying "Sort this or I walk away" simply doesn't work. Saying "Please help me to sort this out so I can stay with you" is much more likely to get the outcome you want.
  3. Not cancelling contracts or giving proper notice. Just ending a contract by walking away is virtually never possible. You will usually have a "Cooling Off" period, but this is a specific period and you may still be liable for costs or charges during this period. Make sure you understand the terms and how to cancel.
  4. Not using a service doesn't in any way absolve you from having to pay for it. Think of it this way, if you bought a car on credit but then left it on your drive because you didn't have a driving licence, you couldn't stop paying for it, as it's still available to you. If you cannot get a service to work, you should seek advice in the first place. Wrong cables and unconnected sockets etc. are not good reasons to just walk away as they can be resolved - usually quite quickly.
  5. I would suggest that anyone with a condition that reduces their ability to understand contracts or responsibilities in any way should make the company aware of this at the outset - or if they would prefer not to, ensure that they have some support in place so that the contract can be explained to them prior to agreeing to the terms. Playing the "Vulnerable Adult" card at a later date is probably not helpful and if it went to court, you would need to prove that you were incapable of making decisions on your own - which could affect other aspects of your independent living.
Phone and broadband contracts get more complaints and defaults than anything else. The companies offering them have a lot to answer for here, as contracts and tariffs are overly complex, terms often not clear and the goods or services supplied may be of high value and easy to re-sell.

An example here would be the Iphones my daughters have. They are on a 2 year contract, but at the end of it, they have to return the phones - or pay an additional year to own them. If this wasn't understood, they could have disposed of them after 2 years without realising that they had not fully paid them off.

I know how frustrating it can be when services are not delivered on the day your expected them - trust me, I've been there, but simply de-camping to another operator is rarely the right choice. Give companies time to sort things out, don't just walk away or summarily cancel a contract without discussions with the provider and it might be best to seek some support first, before things go really wrong.
 
Thank you @noiseboy72 that was a nice post.

I just re-read it and it was informative and useful.

Though number 4 I completely disagree with.
  1. Not using a service doesn't in any way absolve you from having to pay for it. Think of it this way, if you bought a car on credit but then left it on your drive because you didn't have a driving licence, you couldn't stop paying for it, as it's still available to you. If you cannot get a service to work, you should seek advice in the first place. Wrong cables and unconnected sockets etc. are not good reasons to just walk away as they can be resolved - usually quite quickly.

Despite requests they refused to solve anything and in that case and where you ought to get 28 days choice same as when you buy anything I would think Consumer Rights would help in that. Since then I hate BT and don't want anything to do with them.

Anyway can't change history, I felt totally justified what I did, more than that BT didn't get away with it.

5. I would suggest that anyone with a condition that reduces their ability to understand contracts or responsibilities in any way should make the company aware of this at the outset - or if they would prefer not to, ensure that they have some support in place so that the contract can be explained to them prior to agreeing to the terms. Playing the "Vulnerable Adult" card at a later date is probably not helpful and if it went to court, you would need to prove that you were incapable of making decisions on your own - which could affect other aspects of your independent living.

It would probably be better but then I never talk online about my condition, not on my blog, on social media, anywhere really even though I know that being super literal it impairs my understanding in so many ways. I just want to be the same as you guys on here and treated as such, see?

I don't want to be on the phone and say I'm autistic please treat me differently. In that case if it went to court I have access to support and diagnosis and medical records that would show an incapability and that would be on my side.

About the contracts though like you say they are tricky and I will tell you after that time with BT support workers said in future DO NOT enter into any written contracts.

So why did I?

Two reasons, first that guy in the store put the paper over and asked me to sign it before I fully realised what it was, however I'm afraid that is down to me to check but the second thing is I have had my daily support decimated to the point of me getting more help from forums actually plus the social worker I did have is gone, long term sick with mental health issues.

And it's just more that for me in case of emergencies a landline is essential.

Though I feel frustrated like would be normal I didn't express it, just explained the situation on the phone as it is.

I just spoke with the company and they can see there is no working line. Contacting Openreach and then responding is proving difficult. I am now back in the flat and waiting for a scheduled call from them to see when they can fix this.

Anyway I thank you for making those points and I do understand what you say about contracts is right, we can disagree on number four even if I am wrong my brain will always think that I am right. That's just how it feels

I think what hopefully will happen now is that they will fix the line problem and I will just stay with them for the next 18 month of the contract
 
Last edited:

IronGiant

Moderator
My daughter is having broadband installed at the end of the month and it's already annoying me...

Simply because an adult has to be present, I drew the short straw and I'm not a morning person. :laugh:
 
Must have an 8-12am slot and you know, they'll probably get there for 11am.

Meanwhile it's 3pm and not a peep out of the broadband 'providers'.

Perhaps at teatime I could cautiously put the cable into the box and see if some miracle has taken place.
 
Nothing. And they want to take £34 for leaving me without a landline or internet for a month. I really would like to go back to Sky. I'm wondering if tomorrow I tell them that's what I want, what they will do.
 

noiseboy72

Distinguished Member
They cannot charge you until the service is available, so they should credit you for any time billed before this time.

My point in rule 4 is that if the service is available, but you have not been able to access it due to problems outside of their control, they have the right to charge. Incorrect connections in your home are not their problem unfortunately, although they will often try and help and get BT sockets changed over to the correct type.

In your case now, they have not provided the service - or are they still providing it at your old address? In both cases, you could not access it, so a refund may be due.

Give them a call and explain you have been waiting for them to call you to sort out the problem. Just ask what the current status is.

Remember rule 2 - be polite, you need someone to help you, not feel like they are being verbally attacked. If you tell yourself that it's not the person who you are talking to that has caused the problem and that they want to help you, it may be easier to stay calm.

I completely understand that you may not wish to tell every call centre operative you talk to about about your Autism, but it is a fact of life and both you and they need to make provision for it. Can you get a support worker or just someone you know and can trust to be on the call as well? That way they can help you with the conversation and help you get proper resolution.

All the very best :)
 
@noiseboy72 thank you I also just remembered something important that you raised, you said it was better that people were aware beforehand of a disability which is right I agree but at the store when I was with my friend Viv and before I signed any bit of paper I did say it to the young man at the desk I had autism so he did know or at least he was aware but as I said before, it was like he just did what he knew he wanted to do, I can remember saying several times to him it was not what I wanted, but he just did it anyway, does that help change anything for me?

Yes my friend can act as an advocate as she is a carer when I call them tomorrow and I have just pasted the main details of this problem on their community forum.

Also I am aware that I can be a bit headstrong, you have a calming effect with words and you explain things well, thank you again.
 
Last edited:
Update, finally they did phone and it went really well and I think it is a result I am reasonably happy with.

There is an external fault and Openreach cannot do anything until Friday. Apparently the line is active inside the property but there's a fault somewhere between the exchange, something like that anyway, I'm no engineer but I did say I wanted to leave and go back to Sky, they said if I was willing to wait they could put me on a new digital contract £10 a month cheaper so they will contact me Monday to finalise that, in the meantime the fault could be repaired by the weekend.

@noiseboy72 they said I was on day one of a 14 day cooling off period? So I would have been able to cancel.
 

hippo99

Distinguished Member
they said if I was willing to wait they could put me on a new digital contract £10 a month cheaper so they will contact me Monday to finalise that
Remember to find out if this £10 cheaper is perpetual or time limited to say 6 or 12 months, after which it would go back to full price. Best to clarify beforehand so you don’t have any unexpected surprises in 6/12 months time etc.
 

WeeScottishLass

Distinguished Member
Glad to hear you're getting it all a bit more resolved!

Sounds like it's been really difficult and frustrating so I feel your pain!
 
Thanks @WeeScottishLass it's nice to have people around who know better and will help and I'd actually forgotten @hippo99 would be useful in these situations but I think that while in my heart I could see a new Sky deal with a few channels I don't have at the moment, the man at EE I spoke with last night did a good job of one, actually apologising for the issues and two reducing the contract price, in turn I've given them more time to put it right haven't I so let's see if they can find where the fault is and get me turned on, in a manner of speaking.
 

WeeScottishLass

Distinguished Member
Thanks @WeeScottishLass it's nice to have people around who know better and will help and I'd actually forgotten @hippo99 would be useful in these situations but I think that while in my heart I could see a new Sky deal with a few channels I don't have at the moment, the man at EE I spoke with last night did a good job of one, actually apologising for the issues and two reducing the contract price, in turn I've given them more time to put it right haven't I so let's see if they can find where the fault is and get me turned on, in a manner of speaking.
Getting a reduced contract is atleast some decent progress for all the upset they've caused you!

Hopefully they can get it all sorted out and you can get properly back online again.
 

IronGiant

Moderator
Must have an 8-12am slot and you know, they'll probably get there for 11am.
Nailed it :thumbsup: They're about a 20 minute drive away too, so it's not really on to say "phone me when they get there".
 

The latest video from AVForums

Bowers PI7 wireless in-ear headphones review coming soon to AVForums
Subscribe to our YouTube channel

Latest News

Apple's new iPad Pro features mini-LED display
  • By Andy Bassett
  • Published
Apple launches new M1 powered iMac for 2021
  • By Andy Bassett
  • Published
Apple introduces new Apple TV 4K with High Frame Rate HDR support
  • By Andy Bassett
  • Published
Trinnov Audio announces Crestron Home driver
  • By Andy Bassett
  • Published
Rotel announces upgrades to 14 and 15 Series amplifiers
  • By Andy Bassett
  • Published

Full fat HDMI teeshirts

Support AVForums with Patreon

Top Bottom