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A renter’s guide to choosing the best internet service

When moving out of home for the first time, or choosing to rent a house, deciding which internet service provider to go with is as important as electricity and water.

With internet access being such an important part of work and our social lives, it makes sense to choose the best one. So, what’s the best choice for renters?

There are plenty of advantages to renting, including the freedom to move around, less responsibility and no major down payments.

When it comes to connecting essentials at your rental property, you’re spoiled for choice when it comes to service providers for energy and internet. It’s worth exploring your options and choosing a plan that best suits your needs – whether it’s speed, flexible payment options or value for money, here’re a few things to keep in mind.

Consider your need for speed

The nbn™ network has the potential to supercharge the average Australian internet connection, but how fast is fast enough?

Internet speed is measured by the number of data bits per second (bps) that travel from your device to the internet and vice versa. When considering options, you’ll need to decide how much bandwidth you need and research what speeds are available.

Multiple devices using one connection generally need a higher speed plan to allow all devices to operate efficiently. A great option for households of two to four people is a Home Standard plan. This will ensure everyone in your household can partake in their favourite online activities, whether it’s streaming music and movies in high definition, playing games online, sharing memes and photos, or video calling with friends and family.

Enjoy flexibility

One of the many benefits to renting is that you can move around with greater flexibility – if your lifestyle changes, it’s easy to change your home address to suit your needs. When renting, it’s also important to consider flexible internet plan options, such as:

  • Short-term or ‘no lock-in’ contracts. Signing up for long contracts can sometimes save you money, but it can also be difficult to leave or change your address. Find a provider who allows you to change plans, cancel or re-start whenever needed.
  • No exit fees. If you’re renting, watch out for plans that charge exit fees or early termination fees. You could end up paying additional money if you need to switch before the end of the term.
  • Naked internet plans. ‘Naked’ is a term used to describe internet plans that come with no home phone line rental. If you have no need for home phone calls, then avoid the hassle of a home phone.
Woman smiling using her laptop in kitchen

Bang for your buck

Whether you rent or own your own home, it’s a good idea to shop around and keep an eye out for the best deals that fit your needs and budget. Here are some things to look for:

Low set-up fees. At first glance, an internet deal may look like a bargain, but look out for set-up fees – there are providers that handle the set-up for you at low or no cost.

Value for money. Comparing fees across different providers can be overwhelming. Comparator websites can be useful tools to quickly compare nbn plans from a range of internet providers. The cheapest plans are normally slower in speed, so if you want something a bit faster, you may be looking at higher prices.

Savings for multiple services. Did you know some providers offer discounts if you have more than one connected with them? It can also make things easier for your household to have your internet, home and mobile phone connected all in one place.

Avoid potential roadblocks

When it comes to picking an internet plan, you always want to make the best decision based on your circumstances and avoid any potential roadblocks. Here’s a couple of things to consider:

  • nbn network availability. Check with your real estate agent or landlord to see whether your rental property is nbn ready.
  • Bill sharing and convenience. If you live in a share house, you might like to consider how you and your housemates are going to organise paying your bills. If you’d rather pay your energy and internet bills all in the one place, with the same provider, this can sometimes also save you money.
  • Assess the number of multiple connected devices. Having multiple devices connected at the same time can impact your internet speed. Count the number of devices your household typically uses and choose the best plan to suit your data usage. Speak to an expert service provider about whether your current plan meets your specific needs.
  • Upgrading equipment. Ensuring your equipment is up to date can help improve your experience and internet speed. Consider upgrading devices, such as modems, that were made before 2009 and may be outdated.

Finding the ideal plan is a balancing act and may require you to shop around based on how much data you need at a price that fits within your budget. As always, it’s best to weigh up what you value in a plan, and see what services are available in your area and compare your options.

If you're a customer of AGL, you might feel more comfortable signing up to a more convenient plan that also offers value for money – you’ll receive a discount on your internet plan when you combine your energy and internet plans.

And that's not all – because we know a sustainable future matters to you, we also offer certified Carbon Neutral options on our mobile and internet plans, so you can enjoy being connected knowing you’re helping to support a better tomorrow.

Now all in one place

You can save on your internet plan when you combine with AGL energy.

Discount on internet plans: appears on your AGL Telecommunications bill. If you leave your energy plan(s), the discount will no longer apply from the end of your billing period.

nbn™, nbn co and other nbn™ logos and brands are trademarks of nbn co limited and used under licence.

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