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Kiwi households miss out on savings by ignoring broadband switch
Wed, 3rd Apr 2024

Recent research from NZ Compare has revealed that six in ten Kiwi households are wrestling with managing their personal finances due to the growing financial pressures from a recession, rising cost of living and mounting interest rates. Surprisingly, a potential saving of over $360 a year by simply switching broadband providers is being overlooked, with only two in ten households even considering changing providers in the forthcoming year.

The survey was carried out by independent market insights agency, The Interpreters and incorporated the views of 1,452 representative New Zealanders. The findings exposed an interesting relationship between Kiwi households and their broadband providers. Over half of the respondents had not changed providers in over five years or surpassed this by never changing at all.

Generally, broadband customers rarely seek to change providers unless issues arise with their service or a house move dictates it. This consumer behaviour is largely shaped by the erroneous belief that a changeover of broadband providers is an overly complex and time-consuming task. This assumption contradicts another survey finding: 84% of households who had made the switch in the past two years found the process straightforward.

Gavin Male, CEO of NZ Compare explains, "It's not difficult to change broadband providers, especially if a fibre broadband connection is already in place. The new provider typically manages the majority of the setup process and many households can continue to use their existing router, thus avoiding the need to alter device passwords. Scheduling the changeover in advance means there is seldom any loss of broadband service. It's truly frustrating to see households struggling financially and paying more than necessary when the annual savings could cover a week or two of grocery shopping."

Male continued to highlight the financial irony for those customers who have remained loyal to their current broadband provider for multiple years. He notes that these longstanding customers have most likely witnessed a series of price increases in their bills and are essentially being charged a premium for their loyalty. Long-term customers are consequently paying more than is necessary, as evidenced by the series of price hikes implemented by major broadband providers towards the end of 2023, following an earlier set of increases in 2022. This has created a notable price gap between older and newer customers, with introductory deals being offered to attract new subscribers.

NZ Compare is striving to empower consumers by providing a user-friendly platform where they can easily compare different provider services and the potential savings that can be gained. Male emphasizes the essential importance of regularly assessing your broadband plan in order to secure the best value without sacrificing service quality.

Male concluded, "Switching providers or renegotiating existing contracts can result in significant savings, which in these challenging financial times, could provide a real boost to household budgets. I strongly encourage consumers to take a few moments to discover how much they could be saving by comparing broadband plans using NZ Compare."