WALLA WALLA - Charter will increase rates next month for its largest group of cable users.
Expanded Basic customers, who make up roughly 85 percent of Charter's customer base, will see an increase from $55.99 to $58.99 per month.
The rate increase will not affect customers who are part of bundled packages or receiving other current promotions.
Senior Communication Manager Kevin Allen said rising programming costs is the main reason for the rate hike.
Basic cable, the lowest tier available, will remain the same at $24.99; the last time Charter saw a rate increase was in December 2009.
Charter will also take a 40 percent increase to its modem rental service, from $5 to $7 per month.
Allen added the modem rental service includes technical support, and that customers have the option of buying their own modem, either from Charter for a one-time fee of about $50 or from another vendor.
If you buy a replacement modem from a separate vendor, you will need to return your Charter modem so you aren't charged the monthly fee.
If you buy a modem from Charter, you can have the fee carried over several bills.
Customers can still lock in rates prior to the increase, which starts next month.
If you are interested in getting Basic cable for $24.99, not all Charter sales lines offer this lowest tier of service; if you want Basic cable, you will need to call the direct Charter line at 888-438-2427.