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New UK homes must have Gigabit broadband, while access law is huge for tenants

All new homes built in the United Kingdom must be able to support Gigabit internet (1,000Mbps), the government has announced.

The amendment to the Building Regulations (2010) make it a legal requirement for property developers to install the latest infrastructure, capable of hitting the maximum speeds offered by internet service providers like British Telecom and Virgin Media.

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This should prevent developers scrimping on connectivity and ensure new builds are future-proofed with internet speeds capable of streaming 4K and 8K video and games on multiple devices, the government says.

While 72% of the UK can already access the Gigabit speeds, the new requirements should bring the tally above 75% in the near future.

Another new law will also help millions of other tenants and leaseholders receive infrastructure upgrades to enable faster connections. The government says the new Telecommunications Infrastructure (Leasehold Property) Act (TILPA) will make it easier for the major broadband companies to access properties like blocks of flats, when faster speeds have been requested by a tenant.

Previously, unresponsive landlords have held up the process. However, under the new law the government estimates that 2,100 residential buildings will receive upgrades per year. The scheme will benefit nine million people overall.

In a media release, Digital Infrastructure Minister Julia Lopez said: “Nothing should stop people from seizing the benefits of better broadband, whether it is an unresponsive landlord or a property developer’s failure to act.

“Thanks to our new laws, millions of renters will no longer be prevented from getting a broadband upgrade due to the silence of their landlord, and those moving into newly built homes can be confident they’ll have access to the fastest speeds available from the day they move in.”

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