Do I Need A TV License?

TV Licensing LogoWith all the new ways of watching TV today we thought it would be a good idea to give you some basic information about the UK’s TV Licensing laws.

Now, the fairness of a TV license in the first place is a discussion for another day.  What we wanted to do here was to give you the information on whether you actually need one and the costs etc.

All the information in this post has been taken from  We urge you to pay a visit to this site and have a look if you are at all unsure about your situation and what your legal requirements are.

According to the site, you need to be covered by a valid TV Licence if you watch or record TV as it’s being broadcast. This includes the use of devices such as a computer, laptop, mobile phone or DVD/video recorder.  The current costs are £145.50 for colour and £49.00 for a black and white TV Licence.

There are certain exceptions to this but there are also situations where you might think you are covered but you aren’t.  It’s important to note that a TV license covers one residence only.  If you have multiple homes or properties, you may need more licenses.  The following lists break down most people’s situations.

You need a TV Licence

  • You watch or record live TV on any electrical device.
  • You are a standard UK home owner.
  • You are a Tenant in a house or flat.
  • You are a student living in student accommodation.
  • You are a business with a TV for staff or customers.

You don’t need a TV License

  • You watch TV programmes online AFTER they have been broadcast.  For example, iPlayer, Youtube, NetFlix etc.
  • You sell TV’s (Including demonstrating and setting up).
  • You are 75 or over (you must apply for 3 year exemption).

You are entitled to a discount

  • You are a student and don’t live at your accommodation over the summer.

Please understand these are the general rules.  If your situation isn’t clear-cut you should check for more information.

About Craig Armitage

Engineer at Coastal Repairs
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