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CostHelper > Consumer Electronics  > Phones & Communication > Phone Line

Phone Line Cost

How Much Does a Phone Line Cost?

low costLocal calling plan: $15-$30/monthaverage costLocal and long distance plans: $45-$75/monthhigh costBusiness lines: $25-$60/month for one line
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While many households are choosing to rely solely on cell phones, landlines remain useful tools for accessing Internet DSL connections and 911 emergency services.

Typical costs:

  • Basic phone service that includes unlimited local calls generally cost $15-$30 per month, depending on additional features. For example, AT&T[1] charges $23 for a home residential line that includes a few additional basic features such as caller ID, call waiting and voicemail.
  • Home phone service plans that include local and long-distance calling cost $30-$45 per month. For example. Comcast XFINITY calling plans[2] with unlimited nationwide calls start at $30. Plans typically include other calling features such as caller ID and call waiting.
  • Some phone companies connect calls on high-speed Internet connections. The plans allow both long distance and local calls for about $10-$30 a month. For example, Vonage[3] offers international calling plans that start at $26 per month with a one-year commitment and a three-month introductory price of $10 per month.
  • Single-line business calling plans typically cost $25-$60 per month. For example, Verizon business lines[4] with local calling only start at $25 per month; plans with long distance calling as well start at $50 per month. Multi-lines plans cost more. For example, Charter Communications[5] charges $25 per phone line and additional features are billed separately.
Related articles: Long Distance Phone Calls, Internet Phone Service, Internet Access, Cordless Phone, Cell Phone Plan

What should be included:
  • All home phone landlines should include unlimited local calling and a listing in the local telephone directory as well as access to 911 emergency services.
  • Some plans include additional features such as caller ID, call waiting and voicemail.
Additional costs:
  • Additional charges such as federal and local taxes apply to phone lines. Typically, taxes account for less than 1% of the total bill.
  • Optional maintenance insurance (charged as a monthly premium) will cover any in-home wiring repairs and service. This costs about $5-$10 per month.
  • Some home phone plans require one-time fees for setup, activation, installation and equipment rental or purchase.
  • Phone lines require customers to purchase phones for various locations in the house or business. Cordless phones are popular for both uses and cost $10-$300, depending on the features.
  • In some states, such as California, low-income households can receive discounts on a basic home phone line. Expect to pay $6 to $10 monthly for the phone line plus unlimited local calling. Recipients of the discount are often required to provide proof of low-income, such as receiving aid from the country of residence.
  • Bundling phone service with other services such as Internet or cable television provides discounts. For example, Charter Communications[6] discounts business lines packaged with Internet service. Comcast[7] offers discounted deals for customers who combine multiple services as well, with packages for voice, Internet and TV channels starting at $100.
Shopping for a phone line:
  • Connect my phone[8] provides a search engine to find phone line providers in the local area.
  • When switching landline providers, users can often transfer the existing phone number to the new provider.
  • When selecting a phone line service, examine previous phone bills to get a clear idea of how many calls are made locally, in state and out-of-state.
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