How to Choose the Best Internet for Your House

on Friday, 17 May 2013

Are you trying to decide on an Internet plan for your home? Whether you know which ISP you want to choose or are clueless about what you're even looking for, choosing the best Internet can be tricky. Many areas offer multiple choices for Internet service providers, and each ISP offers several plans for different needs. If you're a heavy downloader, your needs will be different from someone who only uses the Internet to check email once a day.

There are a few factors you can consider when choosing the best Internet for your house. Availability in your area, speed, and price are the three most important factors to think about when you're choosing your Internet plan.

Availability: which options are available?

The most obvious factor to consider is the availability of various Internet speed and ISPs in your area. Some rural areas can only get satellite Internet or dial-up, while urban areas often have fiber-optic, high-speed, and other cable-based options. You will probably have two or three different options for ISPs, depending on your area, and certain ISPs will be more common in particular neighborhoods. If you have just moved in, ask you neighbors which options are the most popular. Some providers have a reputation for being slow to send technicians, or they don't have exclusive access to Internet cables in your neighborhood and have to rent them from other providers, which can increase the price you pay.

Speed: what do you need?

If you're a casual Internet user and don't plan to download, play games, or stream movies, lower-speed options will be fine for your needs. If you're a power user or your household is constantly using several devices to connect to the Internet, your needs will be far greater. High-speed Internet will help you make sure you don't get frustrated while waiting for files to download or websites to load while browsing. Don't go cheap on speed if possible - it's usually worth paying more for a plan that suits your needs rather than trying to limit your needs.

Price: what can you pay?

The deciding factor for most people is pricing. Different plans often come with different pricing. Think about what you're used to paying for Internet service, and consider how much you can afford to pay when deciding on your maximum possible number. Try to find a plan that isn't this exact amount per month, as fees for 911 service, modem rental, or other mandatory services will add to the cost of your plan. A cheaper plan isn't better if it includes unreasonably small data or bandwidth caps each month, or if it comes with speed that doesn't suit your needs.

Choosing the best Internet plan for your needs is a matter of balancing the available plans on speed and price. Try to choose a provider flexible enough to give you an upgrade if you find that a plan simply doesn't suit your needs. Often, providers are willing to bundle your Internet with other services if you want to further reduce the price. Don't settle for the first Internet plan you find.

Tyler Root is a real estate agent. He loves sharing his best tips for moving into new homes on house and family blogs.