Couple shocked to learn ISP wants an exorbitant amount of money to connect their home to the internet

A couple bought a home in the Seattle, Washington area without checking internet availability. The seller disclosed that the house was not connected to the internet and the couple, who both spend multiple hours per day using the internet for work from home, disregarded it. Now relying on what sounds like a tenuous agreement to pirate a neighbor's connection, and their wireless hotspots, the couple is unhappy with what a telecom, known robbers on the internet superhighway, wants to charge.


Comcast ultimately said it would require installing 181 feet of underground cable to connect the house and that the couple would have to pay Comcast over $27,000 to make that happen. Cohn and Zenobi did not pay the $27,000, and they've been relying on a 4G hotspot ever since.

"I was just flabbergasted that a house like this, in an area like this, could possibly have never been wired for Internet," Cohn said in a phone interview. Because the house is "in the middle of Seattle, it didn't even dawn on me that that was possible," he said, adding that the lack of Internet service would be "more understandable if I was two miles from my nearest neighbor."

Cohn told us the sellers disclosed in documents before the sale that Internet wasn't connected at the home, but he didn't realize it wouldn't be possible to get service at all. After the failed attempts to get service, "we had our agent reach out to the sellers to figure out what actually is going on here," Cohn said.

I bought a home in an area with a rural co-operative ISP, and it was the only legitimate option in our Community Service District. Long-time residents told me how great the ISP was, and how happy they were to have broadband. I did not test it myself. I somehow thought proximity to the fairly large, moderately tech-forward city of San Francisco meant I'd have bandwidth to spare. "Broadband" means very different things in different places. I loved that home but moved to a place with fiber.