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Can anyone help?

Gjk86

Member
I have recently bought and moved into a house and tried to order a phoneline/broadband with Vodafone. Vodafone cancelled my order because on their system there is already a contracted live line to my house. Turns out the previous owner hasn’t cancelled or moved his broadband. The previous owner is refusing to cancel his broadband to my house (not sure why, guessing he doesn’t want to pay to come out of his contract).

Vodafone, and EE won’t touch me unless it’s for a second line but I don’t really want to pay £150 for the pleasure. Is there anything I can do? The line to my house is contracted to a company called V4 but they’re no use to me and not helpful in the slightest.

Could I plug a router in and use his broadband?(I’m guessing I would need the router to been set up for this provider?)
 

Pheasant

ULTIMATE Member
Have you been in touch with previous owner to discuss why he hasn’t cancelled the existing utilities and services in their name (as I’m sure he is incumbent to do under the contract for sale).

Failing a positive response a little nudge from your conveyancing solicitor may help to nudge them.
 

plunet

Casual Member
I would suggest getting the solicitors to talk to each other. The former owner is failing to relinquish control of services to the property that impact your enjoyment of the property you have purchased.
 

matseffect

Regular Member
Yeah I would speak to your solicitor about it. I am guessing what's happening is you are placing an order with your provider they submit a request to take over the line this then sends a notice to the current account holder, the previous owner in this case who tells his ISP to cancel the take over.

Very odd he won't give you a valid reason.
 

Pheasant

ULTIMATE Member
…in the meantime, does the line have dial-tone?

If so I’d call him from there and thank him for taking care of the inclusive calls to your relatives…in North Korea 😎

Seriously don’t go overboard, but be prepared to repay what you reasonably use.

Also thank him for the inclusive broadband - even if you can’t actually access it. May give the twit pause for thought.
 

CarlO1460

ULTIMATE Member
I’d just plug a router in and use the free broadband whilst you can.

Raise a complaint with Vodafone and provide documentation and say this person no longer resides at the property and no longer has a right to have services there. Could some what be a breach in their terms and conditions for not providing accurate information.

They should be able to cancel it.

Not sure if the person understands that if Vodafone don’t service the new property with the same package, he doesn’t have to pay any exit fees?
 

dabigm

ULTIMATE Member
This seems like one of those legal situations that should just not happen. I would put your complaint in writing to Vodafone, say that this person is paying to have a service provided at a property owned by you and you don't want that service provided to that person but at your address.

Then if they won't shift, you can go to the ombudsman but that process takes weeks (8 weeks minimum).
 

matseffect

Regular Member
I don't know a lot about it but I THINK ISP's hands can be a bit tied in these situations sometimes. Surely this sort of thing has to be covered as part of any standard house sale in the legal agreements etc?

Hope you are able to get it sorted quickly and without too much fuss.
 

Mark.J

Administrator
Staff member
ISPreview Team
I think the advice given above is pretty solid. The old owner has a duty to resolve this, and the solicitor involved in your sale should be able to express that to them.

It's certainly an unusual situation, but I think we can all agree that the old owner is being a total dick :) and doesn't have the law on their side. If he/she is worried about the cost of cancelling, then I suspect they'll be even more concerned about also having to pay your legal costs, if it were to go to court.

You could of course have a new line installed, but if this is on Openreach's copper then the 2nd line may not perform as well as the first. I'd probably then bill the old owner for the cost of the new line. However, you'd still need to resolve the status of the original line, as obviously it's part of what you now own.
 

candlerb

Top Member
Could I plug a router in and use his broadband?(I’m guessing I would need the router to been set up for this provider?)
In principle that could work, but as you said, how you configure the router depends on which ISP was providing the existing service, and in many cases you'll need a valid username and password from that ISP. I've never heard of V4 Telecom before and don't know how they are configured.

I don't buy the reason that the seller intentionally won't terminate the service to avoid a termination fee - by the end of the contract they'll have paid more in rental.

However, I found this post on MSE about a similar problem with V4:

There, somebody was unable to get them to terminate, even when they were the customer and accepting to pay the termination fee. V4 kept rejecting the line takeover, just as you found.

Therefore, it may not be the seller's fault, and whilst it's still ultimately their responsibility to resolve this, you can cut them a bit of slack.

Maybe you could ask politely if they will let you borrow the old router so that you use the broadband while the termination issue is being resolved.
 

Bawlk

Casual Member
The line to my house is contracted to a company called V4 but they’re no use to me and not helpful in the slightest.
V4 Telecoms are the worst, terrible to deal with and wont let you cancel mid contract nor upgrade, I had a relative use them and we tried to switch providers and they kept blocking the transfer and wouldn't release the number at all. They scammed my relative into signing up for ADSL as it was for people with "Light usage", they wouldn't even let us upgrade to FTTC for the remainder.
Luckily FTTP was just available so the new provider just provisioned that instead.
 

TBM

Regular Member
I had a similar situation, moved in and TalkTalk refused to cancel the existing connection. Sky however accepted my order and when O.R. arrived the Engineer said "Not those (slightly fruity language) ers again. I'll disconnect them at the exchange". Went away, back inside the hour and the line was clear, I had my telephone no. and broadband installed. So it can be done if you can get an order accepted by an ISP.
 
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