Wifi black spots in student rental

My daughter is renting a house with other students and the broadband is paid via a set monthly fee of £20 per week each to the agency which covers all utilities, including broadband.

Her bedroom is in the basement and the wifi doesn't reach it. Virgin said it will require a mesh system but won't provide this as it's up to the landlord/agency. The agency said their contracts are run as business accounts so range issues are nothing to do with them. 

We've already purchased a TP extender but this hasn't worked. So will my daughter have to pay for a mesh system herself?

It seems unfair when the house is let to 7 students all paying £20 per week for bills but only her room is affected.

Any advice please?


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  • Alderbank
    Alderbank Posts: 2,700
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    Why hasn't the powerline extender worked?
  • Not sure if the distance from the router is too far. The router is on the ground floor at the front of the house. Daughters bedroom is in the basement at the back of the house. It's a very old house with thick walls.

    Other than that... I don't know why it's not worked.
  • sammyjammy
    sammyjammy Posts: 7,301
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    you could try putting the extender in the room above the basement assuming its floorboards and the front of the house has a concrete floor that might work.

    If that doesn't work it doesn't seem very fair but not sure if there is anything she can do about it, very inconvenient particularly for a student.
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  • iniltous
    iniltous Posts: 2,986
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    edited 8 November 2023 at 8:36AM
    It’s a bit confusing to state a set monthly fee of £20 a week ? , so is it weekly or monthly ,  but admittedly that’s not really the issue , 


    If the terms of the tenancy are the all the utilities included for one fee ,if so  then the absence of one item  ( broadband ) when the other utilities ( electricity , water etc  ) are available , then chances are the landlord will do nothing , and won’t reduce the ‘fee’ , but you could ask .
    Obviously if the items were individually listed , for example like , water £5 , broadband £5 , electricity £10 making  £20 in total,  then you would have a good case to not pay the £5 broadband fee.

    Is the TP extender a WiFi or ‘ powerline’ type extender, ?, 

    If your TP extender is not the ‘power line’  type of adapter  , try a pair  of them  , from the broadband router  ( so obviously you would need access to wherever the router  is located ) you provide an Ethernet cable to the first powerline adapter plugged into the mains ( adjacent to the router ) then in your daughter room the other powerline adapter is plugged into a mains socket and an Ethernet cable to your daughter’s device, basically this uses the house mains wiring to ‘carry’ the Ethernet ‘signals’ between the adapters , but is essentially a wired not wireless system, so although it’s OK for plugging in a laptop that has an Ethernet connection , without extra equipment would be no use for wireless devices like phones , iPads etc.


  • It's weekly, per person. Covers all utilities including broadband. It's quite common for student lets to do this. 
  • It's not a reduction in fee that we're looking for. It's a solution to the problem. Ethernet is not possible due to layout of house and lack of sockets.
  • Olinda99
    Olinda99 Posts: 1,214
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    the solution to the problem is a mesh system or Wi-Fi extender so I suppose the problem nets down to who is going to pay for it
  • iniltous
    iniltous Posts: 2,986
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    edited 8 November 2023 at 11:02AM
    Unfortunately if some sort of WiFi /mesh system were needed to enable the basement flat to make use of the buildings broadband , then you would be supplying it yourself, not only that , presumably these devices would need to be located either in common areas ( hallways , kitchen, bathroom ) where they wouldn’t be ‘secure’ and would potentially need the landlords agreement, or in another students flat ( which would need that student to agree to its placement ) assuming there is a flat with an agreeable occupant that is also in suitable location to allow your daughters flat to connect to whatever device was placed there , a minor point , these devices are mains powered , if the number of power outlets are limited, and that’s the reason for not using powerline adapters asking another flat occupant to use one of their mains sockets for a WiFi/mesh device may be tricky 
  • Grumpy_chap
    Grumpy_chap Posts: 14,451
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    Jmb333 said:
    My daughter is renting a house with other students and the broadband is paid via a set monthly fee of £20 per week each to the agency which covers all utilities, including broadband.

    Her bedroom is in the basement and the wifi doesn't reach it. Virgin said it will require a mesh system but won't provide this as it's up to the landlord/agency. The agency said their contracts are run as business accounts so range issues are nothing to do with them. 

    We've already purchased a TP extender but this hasn't worked. So will my daughter have to pay for a mesh system herself?

    It seems unfair when the house is let to 7 students all paying £20 per week for bills but only her room is affected.

    Any advice please?


    It may be worth looking at where the incoming router is located.
    What floor is the router on? How many floors are there in total?  What "obstacles" are between the router and the basement room?
    Is the router in a communal area, or is it within one of the tenanted rooms? 
    If the latter, has the tenant in that room positioned the router right into a corner, or positioned something else so that it restricts the signal?
    Depending on where the router is located, a slight repositioning may solve the issue.

    I suspect that an "extender" of some kind will be required.
    The first thing here is to understand why the TP extender has not worked.
    Is that a wifi extender or a powerline extender?
  • Clive_Woody
    Clive_Woody Posts: 5,845
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    To be honest you can get a pair of decent MESH routers relatively cheaply (probably more so with black Friday approaching) and she could take them with her when she leaves. I use them around our house and they make a huge difference ensuring fast Wifi everywhere. I've got a TP link MESH system which was really easy to set up and has a handy app.

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/TP-Link-Dual-Band-Coverage-Parental-Controls/dp/B0B8DXJ8XP/ref=sr_1_3?crid=1N7KZCRABZRXE&keywords=mesh+router&qid=1699443044&refinements=p_89:TP-Link&rnid=1632651031&s=computers&sprefix=mesh+router,aps,75&sr=1-3&th=1
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