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Rural Farmowners: Do you still have a landline?

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  • Rural Farmowners: Do you still have a landline?

    I'm curious because I'm tempted to get rid of our land line. We hardly ever use it, cell service is generally good at our place since we have a wide open space around us and the tower is about 5 miles away. It costs me something like $48/month just for the basic service (no long distance, etc.) However, it freaks me out to think of what could happen way out in the boondocks if the cell service goes out or if (God forbid!) something like 9/11 or an earthquake happens and all the wireless circuits are busy. Especially with all the critters we have. We don't have DSL or anything like that, our internet access is via a wireless card as well.

    Just wondering what other country bumpkins do... any tips for cheaper home phone service are welcomed too (though Verizon is our only option ATM).

  • #2
    We had an ice storm here in 2009. The power was out at the house from Tues at 2900 hrs to the following Tues at about 1100 hrs. From my lving room window I can see three towers, two of which I know are cell towers, about three or four miles away. I could charge the phones using the car, but none of my towers had power and I had to find the one spot in the living room where I had near line of sight to a tower about five miles away, and pretty weak at that. So I was happy to still have the land line and here ATT is pretty cheap.

    Where I used to live there was no cell coverage. It was hard getting an unobstructed southern exposure for a dish too. If I wanted cell service I could walk 10 minutes straight up the hill or drive a little longer around.

    When I lived in an apartment in town, cell phone was easy peasy.
    Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
    Incredible Invisible


    • #3
      We have perfect cell phone coverage at our ranch. We aren't in way out in the boons, though.

      But I haven't had a landline since 2004. Cell phone only. Always been fine.
      Equine & Pet Portrait Artist
      **Morgans Do It All**


      • #4
        I still have my landline (Verizon too) for those reasons. I have an old fashioned phone that plugs in the wall so I can use it if the power goes out. However, in the last two years we've had 2-3 storms that took down the phone lines in addition to cable and power, so the cell was the only thing working anyway. Of course one of those storms also took out AT&T's tower signal, so only those with other mobile services had a signal... The landline would be the first "luxury" to go if I needed money, and if they raise the rates again, I will be canceling--just not worth it (I pay about $50, though I have LD and call waiting pkg, it is a 1yr special they offered).
        "A good man will take care of his horses and dogs, not only while they are young, but also when they are old and past service." Plutarch


        • #5
          We have both, land line and cell.
          We use both about the same.

          Most new computer programs are too fast for our slow phone lines, so can't use dial-up for a computer at all any more.
          If we had the newer lines, it would make more sense to still have land lines, if nothing else for the computer.


          • #6
            We're in a valley and have terrible cell coverage, so still have a landline.

            I'd dump it in a second if we had good coverage though.


            • #7
              We got a booster and dumped the land line even when the cell phones didn't work the best at home. We were getting charged an extra $22 a month in taxes just because we lived a distance from town so we dumped them. We were paying $70/month for just a land line, not even long distance, just the phone.
              “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” Stephen R. Covey


              • #8
                Not too far out in the country anymore but have kept the landline for two reasons.

                First, after the sudden derecho storm last year, all of our cell phones were dead or dying - just happened to be a coincidence that had we had power, they all would have gone on the charger that night. The only way we could have called out was the landline.

                Secondly, I keep the landline to have a number to give to people who I would prefer not have my cell phone number.

                We still have dsl through our landline too, not too sure if we could keep that without the landline, but have never asked.


                • #9
                  Have both landline & cell phones.

                  Will never get rid of the landline. Simply don't want to depend on just a cell phone in the event of an emergency. While yes it's true that the landline is out of order during a power outage, I've also had batteries die &/or cell phones crap out unexpectedly as well.

                  While I'm not WAY out in the boondocks, my farm is off the beaten track & situated in a manner where it's a good distance from & completely out of sight of neighbors. I feel the extra monthly bill is worth the peace of mind.


                  • #10
                    I do not have cell coverage out at our place, so obviously we have a land line.

                    That said, we are prone to power outages, and they can last for a while - the land line does not need power or recharging to work. My land line works when the power is out - even when the power is out for days.
                    APPSOLUTE CHOCKLATE - Photo by Kathy Colman


                    • #11
                      I have a landline at my farm because that is the only way I can get DSL and 911.

                      I have a cell phone but I have to drive about 10 miles to get service.

                      I am not happy about spending close to $150/mo for telephonage. But I travel a lot and have a house in town too.


                      • #12
                        I have both. Very basic land line service, with a phone in the house and one in the barn. No call display, call waiting, voice mail, etc. Costs me approx. $30 per month. I only use the cell phone for emergencies and the rare long-distance call. It is never turned on otherwise. It barely gets a signal from inside the house, and not at all from inside the barn.

                        I'm all for not having all one's eggs in the same basket.
                        My Equestrian Art Photography page


                        • #13
                          We have both (though only local service on the LL). I have contemplated dropping the LL but keep it for 911 purposes, and because it is clearer than my cell when I dial in to conference calls for work. It's about $30 a month.

                          We can't get any sort of DSL -- we have an wireless router for internet service.


                          • #14
                            We aren't rural rural but still outside of town. Cell coverage at my house is frustrating at best so we still have a land line. Like some of the other posters, I also do not like giving out my cell number to most people.
                            My blog: Crackerdog Farm


                            • #15
                              We have both as we have a security system that links with the landline and I like having quick access to 911 in case.


                              • #16
                                No landline. I get better reception on the farm then my parents get in their house in town.

                                Internet is some wireless thing I can bring wherever I want to create my own hub. We REALLY miss cable internet (because there was no data limit). Which reminds me to try to sell my Roku.
                                DIY Journey of Remodeling the Farmette: http://weownblackacre.blogspot.com/


                                • #17
                                  I *hate* the data limit, TTP. I work from home most of the time so it is a major inconvenience. I drive to Panera when I need to download a bunch of PDFs, etc. and still sometimes I have to go over.


                                  • #18
                                    Yes. I hate the inconsistency, unpredictableness, and battery requirment of cell phones. Plus I can't hear on them worth a crap. Give me a land line any day of the week for my home phone.
                                    I can be sitting in one spot and not move and go from 4G with 4 bars to 1G with 1 bar on my cell phone.
                                    Not to mention the unpredictable but invaribably short battery life when you need it.


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by fordtraktor View Post
                                      I *hate* the data limit, TTP. I work from home most of the time so it is a major inconvenience. I drive to Panera when I need to download a bunch of PDFs, etc. and still sometimes I have to go over.
                                      When we go to Barnes and Noble, or somewhere with free wifi, we bring every device to do updates! Work and personal i-pads, Nook, laptop, phones, you name it.
                                      DIY Journey of Remodeling the Farmette: http://weownblackacre.blogspot.com/


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by Appsolute View Post
                                        I do not have cell coverage out at our place, so obviously we have a land line.

                                        That said, we are prone to power outages, and they can last for a while - the land line does not need power or recharging to work. My land line works when the power is out - even when the power is out for days.
                                        Originally posted by showidaho View Post
                                        We have both as we have a security system that links with the landline and I like having quick access to 911 in case.
                                        We have some phones that don't require a charger and base station and those don't need electricity to work.

                                        Our basic security is also thru the phone line, but not all is.

                                        A land line with a cell phone gives you more than one option.

                                        The land line is a nuisance on telemarketer calls, caller ID is your friend there.