This fierce competition means there are lots of deals that allow you to save money on both your line rental and your call charges.
So, just as you'd compare the cost of your home insurance or gas and electricity before you buy, comparing the benefits and costs of the leading landline providers should be a priority.
How do deals for landlines work?
If you want a landline telephone in your home then you'll have to pay a monthly line rental fee to the supplier.
In the past, most people paid their line rental to BT but as competition in the home phone market has opened up, there are now lots of companies offering cheap landline phone deals.
When shopping around for the best home phone deals you should have an idea of when and how much you use your landline. This will enable you to find the cheapest landline deal for your usage.
Packages often provide free calls at the evenings or weekends or low rates on international calls.
Some deals also incorporate other services such as low cost broadband or digital television so you need to decide what you want from your home phone package before you start comparing your options.
What to look for when you compare home phone plans
There are several factors you should take into account when you're looking for the best home phone deals:
- Monthly line rental cost
- Monthly cost of associated 'talk' packages
- Contract length
- Call charges
Firstly, you should compare the monthly line rental cost. This is a charge you will pay to all telephone landline providers to benefit from the phone line itself. There's no difference in the service provided so it's generally a case of the lower the better.
You should also compare the cost of any talk 'package' offered as part of each deal and the benefits provided.
Look at the extent of the 'free calls' offered by each landline provider's packages and see what they charge for this. Go for the cheapest deal that offers free calls that you'll use, but don't pay for anything in excess of this.
When searching for the cheapest landline deals you should also establish how long you are committed to the landline provider. Telephone companies make you sign a contract for their services so you should be sure exactly how long you are signing up for.
Cheap landline deals often require you to sign up for 12 months, while there are some deals that tie you in for less time.
Finally, when you compare home phone plans you should consider the call charges. These are typically split into: local and national calls for evening, weekend and daytime periods. The cost of international calls to individual countries will also be specified.
Many landline providers offer some free calls on their deals while others specialise in offering low cost or free evening or weekend calls. Make sure you pick the package that charges you least for the types of calls you make the most.
For example, if you're out most of the day but tend to use your home phone during the evening and on weekends it makes sense to opt for the cheapest landline deal offering free evening and weekend calls rather than choosing a more expensive package that includes daytime calls.
Similarly if you use your telephone infrequently for international calls there's no point paying more for a deal that offers free international calls.