Phone and Broadband firms will be forced to tell customers if they could be on cheaper deals under new Ofcom rules.
Under new rules set out by Ofcom, Broadband, TV, mobile and home phone companies will be required to tell customers when their contract is coming to an end and show them the best deals available to them.
Ofcom says that more than 20 million people have been stuck with subscriptions beyond their lock-in, without realising. They also want companies to remind customers that they can change their package.
Ofcom first announced its plan to help secure end of contract deals in July last year, when the regulator announced that often customers were paying way too much for their deals. Ofcom said people who bundle their landline and broadband service together pay an average 20% more when their contract agreements end, this rises to 26% when customers also bundle TV services. They believe that about 1 in 7 customers do not know whether they are still tied to the original deal.
TV, Phone and Broadband providers now have until February next year to update their systems and must start informing their customers. Companies will need to text, email or send a letter to their consumers between 10 to 40 days before their contracts come to an end.
Ofcom’s consumer group director Lindsey Fussell said: “We’re making sure customers are treated fairly, by making customers are treated fairly, by making companies give them the information they need, when they need it. This will put power in the hands of millions of people who are paying more than necessary when they’re no longer tied to a contract.”
How to make a complaint to your provider:
If you have a complaint about a mobile, broadband, phone or TV provider follow these steps:
- First stop is to complain too your provider.
- If they can’t solve the issue, you can ask them for a deadlock letter, you can then refer your complaint to an independent resolution service.
- If after eight weeks, and you still haven’t got a resolution, then you can contact the Ombudsman Service to help resolve the issue.