New homes in the UK will get the opportunity to be connected to superfast internet, either for free, or for a fixed, co-funded price, it was announced on Friday.
The Government is working with Openreach, BT's local access network business and the Home Builders Federation (HBF) on an agreement to deliver fibre connectivity to new properties.
Under the agreement, Openreach will introduce an online planning tool for homebuilders, which will show them if a certain property can be connected to fibre for free, or if a contribution is needed.
In case of a contribution, the housing industry will have access to a 'rate card' from Openreach, which will show any fixed cost the homebuilder would be required to pay. In a press release following the announcement, it was said that Openreah will make a 'significant contribution itself', before seeking any funds from the developers.
The announcement also adds that, according to some estimates, more than half of all new homes can be connected to fibre for free.
“The Government’s ambition to build 1 million new homes over the course of this Parliament will house families and future generations to come,“ said Digital Economy Minister Ed Vaizey. “Broadband connectivity is just one thing that home buyers now expect when buying a new build, so this industry-led push to make superfast, or indeed ultrafast, broadband speeds available by default in new homes represents a very important step in meeting the UK’s digital needs.”