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Business use of residential broadband

Community Veteran
Posts: 4,767
Thanks: 102
Fixes: 19
Registered: 14-07-2009

Business use of residential broadband

Most of the week I work from home as a "sole trader" - meaning my business is me; I don't have any partners or employees.  I frequently use the Internet as a source of information for my work and from time-to-time to download a file I need.  I am on a Residential broadband contract with Plusnet and this had never worried me until on another forum I was shocked to read that the terms and conditions for BT Residential Broadband specifically seem to preclude what I am doing unless the customer has permission.
Quote
Using the service – BT Broadband Options
You must not use the service for any commercial or business purpose whatsoever unless we have given you permission to do so. If we find that you are using the service in for business or commercial purposes we reserve the right to limit or terminate the service immediately.

All I can find in the Plusnet terms and conditions is
Quote
Using the service
You may only use the service for your own personal use and enjoyment. You must always follow our acceptable use policies in the way that you use your chosen services which can be found on http://www.plus.net/info2/legal/aup.html.

Since I am the business, any business use is personal use so it looks like I am okay (of course, I abide by the acceptable use policy). 
Any comments?
8 REPLIES
Plusnet Alumni (retired) orbrey
Plusnet Alumni (retired)
Posts: 10,540
Registered: 18-07-2007

Re: Business use of residential broadband

Not a problem at all with us, you'll be fine Smiley
Community Veteran
Posts: 2,557
Thanks: 172
Fixes: 2
Registered: 27-05-2011

Re: Business use of residential broadband

so matt has put your mind at ease  Cool Smiley
I used to run a business and the main issue for me was the VAT situation i was putting the BB services through the books (not plusnet).
Most posts on the forum relate to people using a domestic service and the complaining about response times to faults and help desk etc. People really shroud pay extra it they cant live with domestic type service agreements.  Lips are sealed
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Community Veteran
Posts: 6,735
Thanks: 12
Registered: 02-02-2008

Re: Business use of residential broadband

Quote from: Matt
Not a problem at all with us, you'll be fine Smiley

That comment will be of great interest to people looking to move from Be to PlusNet as a result of the Sky takeover, many of whom are sole traders or other types of "home worker".
The Be contract (for Unlimited or higher products) specifically allows business use as a sole trader (or more in some cases) but standard Sky contracts do not.
The situation going forward has not been clarified by Sky, though existing contracts are still in force for the time being.
Support levels are a different issue, it's specifically whether the type of use is valid or not that is the main concern.
Plusnet Alumni (retired) orbrey
Plusnet Alumni (retired)
Posts: 10,540
Registered: 18-07-2007

Re: Business use of residential broadband

The only thing we'd say is, if your business depends on your broadband, *at least* have a back up service. If you're on a residential tariff with residential SLAs, don't claim that you're losing thousands of pounds a day as a result Smiley
Community Veteran
Posts: 4,767
Thanks: 102
Fixes: 19
Registered: 14-07-2009

Re: Business use of residential broadband

Thanks Matt, very helpful.  I would have to be making thousands of pounds a day before I could be losing thousands of pounds a day if something went wrong - so no worries there!
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,735
Thanks: 12
Registered: 02-02-2008

Re: Business use of residential broadband

Quote from: Matt
The only thing we'd say is, if your business depends on your broadband, *at least* have a back up service. If you're on a residential tariff with residential SLAs, don't claim that you're losing thousands of pounds a day as a result Smiley

Absolutely.  Grin
I've seen people try to make such claims and they get very short shrift (quite rightly) from people like me pointing out that if it's THAT important to you then pay for an appropriate service, not one with a domestic SLA.  Crazy
Routefinder
Grafter
Posts: 376
Registered: 01-08-2007

Re: Business use of residential broadband

Also, many employed folk work from home some of the time and VPN connect to their company systems..........................so is that in BT terms 'running a business from home' or simply as Matt infers using the BB connection for business purposes which is AOK from a common sense point of view where the user is not expecting a business SLA level Cheesy
James
Grafter
Posts: 21,036
Registered: 04-04-2007

Re: Business use of residential broadband

Quote
1.1 You are required to sign-up to an appropriate account type depending on your required utilisation. Home accounts are provided for Consumers. If you wish to use your account commercially then you must sign-up to a Business account or Teleworker account where appropriate. For guidance, we consider commercial use to be at a level above that which is running a part time Business or supporting any kind of hobby. Business accounts must be used if the account is to be used from any official Business Premises while Teleworkers are considered to be commercial use of a residential connection.

Working from home some of the time isn't an issue.  If you are using the connection to work full time, you're best off on a business package.