How to Find Cheaper Home Internet Services
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Technology has transformed the way we do business, receive healthcare, and communicate with our loved ones, yet 1 in 4 U.S. households go without Internet access often because they can’t afford it.
High-speed home Internet services, which costs about $40 per month on average, can be a budget buster for many retirees living on a fixed income as well as lower-income families. Fortunately, there resources available that can help you locate low-cost or discounted services in your area. Here’s where to begin.
Through partnerships with Internet providers like Comcast, Cox, AT&T, T-Mobile, Mediacom and others, EveryoneOn can help you search for services in your area that provide high-speed (4G LTE) Internet at a very low cost. Most participating companies charge around $10 per month, with no contract and no equipment fee. However, for non-income qualifiers, there may be a one-time setup/equipment fee of $62. Data plans will vary too.
To start your search, go to EveryoneOn.org and type in your ZIP code and click on “Find Offers” button, or you can call 877-947-4321. You’ll then need to answer a few questions regarding you household financial situation so the Internet services you’re eligible for can be located.
Some providers offer their services only to people with limited financial resources, however there are others that offer great deals to everyone regardless of income. What’s available to you will depend on where you live.
Also note that in addition to the low-cost Internet services, EveryoneOn also provides referrals to affordable computers and free computer classes. Most of the companies they work with offer refurbished tablets for usually under $100, and computers for under $160, which are available to everyone. And, they provide referrals to free computer classes that are typically offered in public libraries across the U.S.
To qualify, you’ll need to show that your annual household income is at or below 135 percent of the Federal Poverty Guidelines – which is $16,038 for one person, or $21,627 for two. Or, that you’re receiving certain types of government benefits, such as Medicaid, food stamps, SSI, public housing assistance, veterans pension or survivors pension benefit, or live on federally recognized Tribal lands.
To apply, you’ll need to contact an Internet provider in your area that participates in the Lifeline program and ask for an application form. To locate providers in your area, visit LifelineSupport.org or call 888-641-8722. Once the provider verifies your eligibility, they will begin service. (NOTE: The Internet companies that participate in the EveryoneOn program do not currently accept the lifeline subsidy.)