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


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When Zachary Cohn and his wife purchased a property in the Northgate neighborhood of Seattle, Washington, they failed to anticipate any trouble getting home World wide web support. It was only immediately after closing on the property in July 2019 that they acquired the undesirable news. “All six neighbors I share a residence line with are wired for Comcast, but our home under no circumstances was,” Cohn told Ars.

Comcast’s predecessor organization had wired up the community with cable a long time earlier and the ISP delivers superior-velocity broadband to the abutting attributes. But the cable Tv and Online service provider by no means extended a line to the dwelling purchased by Cohn and his wife, Lauryl Zenobi.

Cohn put in a lot of months seeking to get responses from Comcast on how he and Zenobi could get Web provider. Eventually, he contacted his Metropolis Councillor’s office environment, which was ready to get a real response from Comcast.

Comcast finally mentioned it would need putting in 181 toes of underground cable to join the property and that the few would have to pay Comcast about $27,000 to make that materialize. Cohn and Zenobi did not pay the $27,000, and they’ve been relying on a 4G hotspot ever considering that.

“I was just flabbergasted”

“I was just flabbergasted that a property like this, in an space like this, could probably have under no circumstances been wired for World wide web,” Cohn mentioned in a telephone interview. Because the household is “in the middle of Seattle, it didn’t even dawn on me that that was possible,” he claimed, introducing that the lack of World-wide-web service would be “a lot more easy to understand if I was two miles from my nearest neighbor.”

The Seattle Kraken hockey team’s $80 million follow facility is in the similar Northgate neighborhood, about a 50 percent-mile from the home. There is a important bus station in the spot, a gentle rail station that not too long ago opened close by, and an elementary school inside of about a 90-second stroll, Cohn mentioned, noting that the property is “well in just the Seattle town limitations.”

The house, designed in 1964, is also about 10 miles from the two T-Cellular Park, in which the Seattle Mariners play, and Lumen Field, the Seattle Seahawks stadium named right after CenturyLink’s Lumen brand. T-Mobile doesn’t provide its new house World wide web support at the property. CenturyLink presents World wide web service at Cohn’s address—but only its historical DSL with down load speeds of up to 3Mbps and upload speeds up to 500kbps. Cable and fiber just are not readily available at the dwelling.

Not our initial Comcast horror story

We’ve written about other men and women who purchased properties without having acknowledging there was no property Internet company, but those stories usually took location in tiny cities or rural locations. In some scenarios, Comcast’s web-site and customer company staff members falsely explained to house purchasers that support was accessible thanks to mistakes in the company’s availability database.

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

Zachary Cohn

Comcast availability data was not a problem in this circumstance, as Cohn mentioned he didn’t believe to check out that there was a Comcast relationship prior to closing on the Seattle household. “Truthfully, I did not even think to appear. What property in the middle of Seattle would not be wired for sensible World-wide-web?” Cohn stated.

Cohn contacted Ars right after reading a person of our earlier Comcast horror tales, hoping to get the word out to other people that an Online connection is no warranty even in densely populated cities—and even when all your neighbors have company.

Government broadband courses usually emphasis on “connecting neighborhoods in particular underserved communities, which I imagine is excellent,” Cohn claimed. But he desires people to know “there are substantial swaths of people today, equally in substantial geographic regions and in compact personal instances, that just hardly ever received linked to substantial-pace World wide web, and how tricky it is to go via life with no that kind of connection.”

While Cohn’s scenario is abnormal for the reason that all the surrounding houses have broadband, he is considerably from the only urban dweller without the need of contemporary services. It is specially a trouble in reduced-money locations exactly where ISPs have picked not to upgrade old phone strains.

Comcast junction box across the street

With the qualities abutting Cohn’s, there are overhead electrical power traces that Comcast used to extend cable to the houses. But “our power is underground and so… there are no poles to ride off,” Cohn explained.

The block is shaped like a triangle, Cohn mentioned, incorporating, “We are the only household on our facet of the triangle, and the other two sides each have a few residences.” On the aspect of the house that won’t experience its neighbors, there is an arterial highway. The closest Comcast junction box is throughout that road, “so they would have to dig underneath the arterial to join our house to that junction box.”

Cohn advised us the sellers disclosed in files just before the sale that World wide web wasn’t connected at the home, but he did not understand it wouldn’t be achievable to get services at all. Soon after the unsuccessful makes an attempt to get provider, “we had our agent achieve out to the sellers to figure out what essentially is going on here,” Cohn stated.

They learned that the prior owners struck a deal with a neighbor who ran a cable “from his Comcast hookup, across his home, across our property, and then into this property,” Cohn explained. The former house owners ended up leasing out the household, and “they form of created this previous-moment offer with the neighbor to appease the renters,” Cohn claimed.

But “when we talked to [the neighbor], he designed it extremely clear that he was really disappointed with that arrangement in the earlier,” Cohn explained. “I essentially persuaded our neighbor to carry on that arrangement until we could arrive up with some option.”


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