September 25, 2023


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Couple bought home in Seattle, then learned Comcast Internet would cost $27,000


Couple bought home in Seattle, then learned Comcast Internet would cost $27,000

Aurich Lawson | Getty Pictures

When Zachary Cohn and his wife bought a residence in the Northgate community of Seattle, Washington, they didn’t expect any difficulty receiving property Net provider. It was only immediately after closing on the dwelling in July 2019 that they realized the terrible information. “All 6 neighbors I share a property line with are wired for Comcast, but our residence by no means was,” Cohn advised Ars.

Comcast’s predecessor enterprise had wired up the community with cable decades earlier and the ISP presents significant-pace broadband to the abutting houses. But the cable Television set and Web provider provider never ever prolonged a line to the dwelling acquired by Cohn and his wife, Lauryl Zenobi.

Cohn invested lots of months attempting to get solutions from Comcast on how he and Zenobi could get Internet service. At some point, he contacted his Metropolis Councillor’s business office, which was in a position to get a actual response from Comcast.

Comcast eventually explained it would call for installing 181 feet of underground cable to link the dwelling and that the couple would have to pay Comcast over $27,000 to make that come about. Cohn and Zenobi did not fork out the $27,000, and they have been relying on a 4G hotspot ever given that.

“I was just flabbergasted”

“I was just flabbergasted that a household like this, in an region like this, could possibly have in no way been wired for World wide web,” Cohn explained in a cellular phone interview. For the reason that the home is “in the center of Seattle, it failed to even dawn on me that that was attainable,” he reported, incorporating that the deficiency of Online support would be “far more comprehensible if I was two miles from my nearest neighbor.”

The Seattle Kraken hockey team’s $80 million exercise facility is in the identical Northgate community, about a fifty percent-mile from the residence. There is certainly a important bus station in the spot, a mild rail station that just lately opened nearby, and an elementary school within about a 90-2nd stroll, Cohn said, noting that the residence is “properly within the Seattle town limitations.”

The residence, built in 1964, is also about 10 miles from both T-Cell Park, exactly where the Seattle Mariners participate in, and Lumen Industry, the Seattle Seahawks stadium named soon after CenturyLink’s Lumen brand name. T-Cell won’t present its new property Net services at the dwelling. CenturyLink presents World wide web assistance at Cohn’s address—but only its ancient DSL with down load speeds of up to 3Mbps and upload speeds up to 500kbps. Cable and fiber just aren’t offered at the house.

Not our initial Comcast horror story

We have created about other men and women who acquired properties with no noticing there was no dwelling Internet provider, but people stories usually took location in compact cities or rural areas. In some scenarios, Comcast’s internet site and consumer company workers falsely explained to dwelling customers that services was out there due to faults in the company’s availability database.

Zachary Cohn and Lauryl Zenobi.
Enlarge / Zachary Cohn and Lauryl Zenobi.

Zachary Cohn

Comcast availability knowledge was not a issue in this situation, as Cohn claimed he did not consider to test that there was a Comcast connection in advance of closing on the Seattle house. “Truthfully, I did not even think to glance. What home in the center of Seattle would not be wired for realistic Net?” Cohn said.

Cohn contacted Ars just after examining just one of our preceding Comcast horror stories, hoping to get the word out to many others that an Internet relationship is no guarantee even in densely populated cities—and even when all your neighbors have support.

Federal government broadband programs generally aim on “connecting neighborhoods in distinct underserved communities, which I assume is good,” Cohn said. But he wants people to know “there are large swaths of people, both of those in significant geographic spots and in little particular person conditions, that just never got connected to superior-speed World-wide-web, and how tricky it is to go through lifestyle without that type of link.”

Though Cohn’s situation is unusual for the reason that all the bordering houses have broadband, he is far from the only city dweller without present day support. It’s especially a difficulty in decreased-earnings areas where ISPs have decided on not to improve old phone traces.

Comcast junction box throughout the road

With the houses abutting Cohn’s, there are overhead energy lines that Comcast employed to lengthen cable to the properties. But “our electric power is underground and so… there are no poles to journey off,” Cohn explained.

The block is formed like a triangle, Cohn reported, incorporating, “We’re the only residence on our aspect of the triangle, and the other two sides every single have 3 homes.” On the aspect of the household that does not facial area its neighbors, there is an arterial road. The closest Comcast junction box is across that highway, “so they would have to dig under the arterial to join our property to that junction box.”

Cohn advised us the sellers disclosed in files just before the sale that Internet wasn’t linked at the home, but he didn’t recognize it wouldn’t be attainable to get support at all. Right after the failed tries to get service, “we had our agent arrive at out to the sellers to determine out what in fact is going on in this article,” Cohn said.

They uncovered that the preceding home owners struck a offer with a neighbor who ran a cable “from his Comcast hookup, throughout his residence, throughout our residence, and then into this property,” Cohn reported. The earlier proprietors have been renting out the home, and “they kind of produced this very last-minute deal with the neighbor to appease the renters,” Cohn said.

But “when we talked to [the neighbor], he made it incredibly distinct that he was pretty unsatisfied with that arrangement in the past,” Cohn mentioned. “I in essence certain our neighbor to continue that arrangement until we could occur up with some choice.”


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