Are New Houses Built With Phone Lines? (Explained)3 min read

Landline phones have become a rare sight in today’s world, with most people using their mobile phones to make calls. Only 2.3% of people use landline phones exclusively in their daily lives, with most over the age of 65 years old. While the landline phone is rare, it still has its place in people’s lives.

A landline phone works during power outages and is a reliable option for anyone, no matter the location. To connect a landline phone, the phone jack was installed using a coaxial cable ran to the phone network to connect the landline phone. Installing phone lines is a straightforward process, making it an easy addition to new homes.

In this article, we will be covering if new houses still include phone lines and what you can do with home phone wiring.

Should You Install Phone Lines in a New Home?

For decades, phone lines were a standard part of every new residential construction project. You typically find landline phones in living room spaces or kitchens—easily accessible to anyone in the home. In 2004, the number of mobile phone numbers surpassed the number of landline numbers in the United States.

Since then, home phones have slowly declined in usage, and we have turned to mobile phones. If you are constructing a new home, you are likely wondering if installing a phone line will be worth it. The attitude towards this question is typically met with a “why not?” response among building contractors. 

The process of installing phone line wire is drastically easier during the initial home construction. Once the builders finish the home, the installation process requires tearing out parts of the home’s walls and pulling the wire across the house. In most cases, a home builder will add a phone jack to your new home without asking. 

Standard landline phone wiring with four twisted pairs is also inexpensive, running for $0.15 per foot of wire. If you want to build a home on a budget, running phone line wire will not eat into your budget. These costs make installing phone lines an easier choice, with most people agreeing to add the phone jacks.

What Does it Cost to Install a Phone Line in a Finished Home?

Phone line installation
Phone line installation

Things get a little more tricky when you want to install phone jacks in your finished home. While most homes already have phone jacks, things aren’t guaranteed for some newer homes to have any phone lines installed. If your home builder did not add phone lines, you need to call your local phone installer. 

According to HomeAdvisor, installing one phone jack in your home costs between $108 to $266. These costs can change drastically depending on the size of your home, as the installer will need to make a series of small holes throughout the home. If the installer does not have access to inter-wall space, these costs can double or triple.

The installer will need to run your phone line from the telephone pole and take the wire behind the walls. Running the wire is a tedious process that requires a flashlight and a lot of patience to complete. Most phone installation businesses charge $50 to $80 per hour for labor. If your home is large, you could be in for a larger expense than expected.

However, the costs of operating a landline phone network are very inexpensive once installed. On average, a landline costs $42 per month. You can make as many calls as you would like, and you are not limited during power outages. This consistent service is helpful in emergencies, and first-responders can link your address to your phone quickly.

How Do You Cover Unused Phone Jacks?

Phone jack
Phone jack

If you have a home with phone jacks installed, you may want to cover them up and create a more modern appearance. You can find phone jacks in all areas of a home, from under desks to high up on a wall. Covering unused phone jacks can take a little creativity to make them unnoticeable to guests. 

One of the simplest methods of covering phone jacks is placing decorations over them. Some ideas of coverings could be:

●       Mirrors

●       Wall Art

●       Dry Erase Board

●       Furniture

If you want to eliminate wall-mounted phone jacks, you can also patch them over. Take out the electrical box and phone wires from the wall, ensuring that you don’t damage any surrounding electrical wires. Place drywall in the cutout hole and paint it to blend it into the wall for a seamless repair.

This method may not work for those trying to patch only one phone jack as some phone jack systems are linked together. If you damage a phone jack in a bedroom, it will not work throughout the rest of the home. To keep your landline system working, the better choice would be to cover them on the wall.

How Can You Use Cat6 Wire?

While we have phased away from using landline wire in newer homes, we have replaced it with Cat5 and Cat6 wire. These data wires are typically installed by your internet or cable service provider and linked to a phone. Cat6 wires can also be used for a variety of applications other than a home phone.

You can plug your computer directly into the ethernet cable or link a router to the internet service. All of your home’s internet, cable, and phones will be linked using this wire. These cables are used for your internet service and can be utilized in security systems as well. There are a lot of possibilities with Cat6 wiring, leading to standard phone line wires disappearing.

Cat6 wire is used for faster computer network speeds and can reach 1000 Mbps of data transfer. If you are looking for fast and reliable speeds, the Cat6 wire is the better choice for your home. It is also the primary wire installed by phone installers, leading to cheaper installation costs.

Conclusion

While landline phones have gone out of style for the new generations, phone lines are still standard for new home construction. The easy installation process leads many contractors to add them when the home’s walls are unfinished. However, a home phone can also be linked to your internet service for a more cost-efficient option. 

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