Leasing A Modem? Why Not Buy One

If you are currently a cable/DSL subscriber, you might currently be leasing/renting your equipment from your provider for a monthly charge. If this is the case, why not just buy one?

One thing providers do not want you to know is you can buy both DSL and cable modems relatively cheap. You may hear the “we won’t support it” or “if we change our signal it won’t work” excuse, but for the most part, this is non-sense.

Here are some of Newegg’s listings:

If you are paying $5 a month or more, these modems will pay for themselves in about a year, so in the long run you can save quite a bit.

If anyone hasĀ  done this, please post the modem you use and your ISP to help others out.


  1. Doesn’t always work when trying to save a buck. Called Brighthouse (my ISP) in Florida. You are leasing the modem but even if you elect to use one not provided by them the service fees remain the same. Crappy but true.

  2. R Alan Payne says:

    Does anyone have a list of modems that are compatible with various ISP’s ? My father has Clearwire for an ISP and leases their modem … but I don’t want to suggest he buy one that won’t work (especially from an online store where returns are difficult).

  3. I receive my phone from my cable company. My ISP claimed that I wouldn’t be able to go out and buy a cable modem and still get my phone service from the cable company. Is that true, or can I buy one that provides phone as well.

    • I receive land-line digital phone service on mine also. My modem in addition to the network RJ-45 jack has two phone jacks (the standard RJ-11 type you see in the wall) for connecting the phone. Were you to buy a separate modem with those RJ-11 jacks you most likely could not configure it with your existing carrier, so what the rep told you was most likely true.

      You could switch over to Vonage (they provide an add-on router that has the RJ-11 jacks), but then you wouldn’t be saving anything as you’d have to pay for the Vonage service. That is unless Vonage is cheaper for land-line compared to what you pay now.

  4. My ISP is Charter Communications, I have my own Linksys cable modem.

  5. Bill McIntyre says:

    Don’t forget about e-Bay. I signed up for Qwest DSL over 3 yrs ago and they provided the Actiontec 1701-WG modem (w/wireless) with 1 yr free rent. Before the 1st year of free rent ran out, I purchased an identical modem off of e-Bay for $23 & sent back the Qwest rental (saving $5/month). The modem I received was an exact duplicate & even came in the Qwest packaging. I’ve since ordered another one (for $21) just to have on hand for troubleshooting & as a spare. I didn’t have to bid for either of these two modems – that was their “Buy It Now” price. I’m pretty sure e-Bay had original modems for various other ISPs offering DSL, both new & used. Both modems I purchased were advertised as brand new/never used, and appeared to be so.

    The Actiontec brand may not be the most feature-loaded modem available, but I’ve never had any problems with it. I added a couple $12 switches from Newegg & have had no issues whatsoever with the 5-6 systems connected. The wireless has also worked flawlessly for the entire period (3.5 yrs).

  6. In the US the modem is sold to the users after the demarct point, while in Europe it’s the responsability of the ISP to provide you with one, and if it’s broken, the ISP will have to send you a replacement one as long as you send back the broken one. This is also applied when the user does not know how to do basics installation, the ISP sends a technician because when subscribing, the fees are taken. So the demarct point is inside the customer’s premises. What users do usually is to buy a router – switch (NAT) to share with other PCs in the house.

  7. I’ve been using COX for years. Not only did they encourage me to use my own modem but they gave me a list of the best available, and where I could buy them. When I switched my phone from COX to vonage COX again suggested the correct modem to use, and where I could buy it. Vonage agreed with the recommendations. Been using COX before the Napster era. They provide 24 tech support and their automated tech support is also great! Used COX in Califronia and Arizona.

  8. in new zealand, isps give you modems free, yeah thats right give you, you sure as hell dont lease them.

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