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Ultrafast broadband access is becoming a priority for buyers of new homes, The Berkeley Group believes.

According to the developer, which is working with Openreach to connect major new housing developments with full-fibre broadband, ultrafast connectivity is almost as important to new home buyers as running water and electricity.

Indeed, the company said owners expect it to be available from the day they move in, while many people would be put off purchasing if the new properties did not offer high-speed connectivity.

Rob Perrins, Chief Executive of Berkeley, commented: "For new home buyers, high-speed broadband has almost become a given now.

"It is like the power steering on a car - no one asks whether the car they’re buying has it anymore."

Mr Perrins noted that the growing use of the likes of Netflix and Amazon Prime means people are consuming more and more bandwidth.

As a result, he believes that by installing ultrafast broadband in new homes, Berkeley can be confident residents will have the capacity for their future needs.

"The fact that Openreach’s network is open to competition is also a significant factor," he continued.

"People want a choice of broadband provider.”

Berkeley began working with Openreach to install free fibre-to-the-premises technology in developments consisting of 250 homes or more in February 2016.

However, Openreach reduced the threshold to 100 homes in May last year, before dropping it again to 30 homes in November.

More than 586,000 premises across 2,400 developments now have ultrafast broadband thanks to Openreach working with property developers.

Kim Mears, Managing Director of Infrastructure Delivery at Openreach, said: "We’re investing heavily in ultrafast broadband because we’re committed to giving the UK a first-class network, capable of delivering the very latest communication services for households and businesses."

She added that people are "passionate" about the speed and reliability of the broadband service offered by their communication provider.

This, she said, means the availability of ultrafast speeds can "strongly influence their decision on which new property to buy".

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