Phil Spencer reveals the one thing you should never compromise on when house hunting

It's the non-negotiable you should always check

The last year has changed what we're willing to compromise on when looking to buy a home. But according to Location, Location, Location presenter Phil Spencer there is one thing you shouldn't be looking to compromise on - broadband.

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'Broadband got to have broadband, you just have to have it,' Phil Spencer told Ideal Home, urging current house hunters to check internet speed before moving. 'I don't think people will make compromises on that going forward.'

A strong broadband connection in every room of the house was something you could compromise on pre-pandemic with the safety net of the office or a nearby Pret wifi to rely on. However, now that working from home is likely to become the norm for many of us, checking the broadband before buying a home has become essential.

phil spencer with blue coat and white shirt

(Image credit: Steve Paston/PA Archive/PA Images)

'They might find a nice house in a place that they want to live, but if they're worried about going into lockdown or they're worried about the amount they're going to have to work from home in the future bad broadband will mean they won't buy the house,' continues the property guru.

How to check internet speed before moving

study room with white wall and wooden table with chair

(Image credit: David Giles)

Bad broadband is no picnic when you have a diary stacked with Zoom work meetings. While there are things you can do to make the internet faster, it is definitely worth checking the broadband speeds and deals that are available in the area before buying. You can check this on most price comparison websites, but it is also worth asking the previous owners or the future neighbours if there are any wifi dead zones in the house or neighbourhood.

While the working from home revolution has made us dependent on broadband, it has, in turn, made it easier for many of us to compromise on commuting distance. Phil points out that previously house prices used to be dictated by commuting distance, but the Channel 4 presenter predicts that this is all changing.

room with white shelves on blue wall and wooden table with chair

(Image credit: Future PLC)

'You could track the house price falling as the distance from the centre of employment to the length of train journey increased,' says Phil. 'I just don't think that is going to happen anymore, because people are working from home, and perhaps strangely found that they enjoyed working from home.'

To celebrate the creative ways many of us have been working from home this last year, Phil Spencer has teamed up with A Place in the Sun presenter Ben Hillman, and Wickes to judge the Wickes Home Office Awards.

The awards are looking for the most ingenious and clever home office ideas from garden offices to micro office spaces. You can still enter the competition via the website, but you'll need to be quick as it closes in under a week!

Related: Small home office ideas – stir creativity no matter how tight your home is on space

Have you checked the broadband at your future dream home?

Rebecca Knight
Deputy Editor, Digital

Rebecca Knight has been the Deputy Editor on the Ideal Home Website since 2022. She graduated with a Masters degree in magazine journalism from City, University of London in 2018, before starting her journalism career as a staff writer on women's weekly magazines. She fell into the world of homes and interiors after joining the Ideal Home website team in 2019 as a Digital Writer. In 2020 she moved into position of Homes News Editor working across Homes & Gardens, LivingEtc, Real Homes, Gardeningetc and Ideal Home covering everything from the latest viral cleaning hack to the next big interior trend.