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Who Owns My DIRECTV Receiver?
By Swanni

Washington, D.C. (March 11, 2013) - Editor's Note: TV's Answer Man, aka Swanni, takes your questions regarding how to best use the latest products and services in TV technology. If you have a question about TV technology, ask TV's Answer Man by sending an e-mail to

Q. I have been thinking of dropping my DIRECTV service and switching to cable. But I am curious about something. What about my DIRECTV HD DVR receiver? Do I own it? Could I sell it after I drop my service? -- Harvey, Peoria, Illinois.

Harvey, it depends. When you sign up for DIRECTV, you can purchase your receiver. But it can cost up to $500 depending upon what kind of HD DVR you get, if you are getting an HD DVR. (DIRECTV says the Genie HD DVR would cost $500.) You'll have to pay a monthly HD DVR fee on top of that as well.

Because of the high costs associated with buying the receiver, DIRECTV often leases receivers to new and old customers. That enables you to just pay the monthly receiver fee.

However, keep in mind, if you're leasing your receiver and you drop your service, you'll have to return the unit to DIRECTV. If you don't, you'll have to pay a penalty. According to DIRECTV's web site, the company may charge a fee of up to $45 per standard receiver' $135 per DVR; $100 per HD receiver; $200 per HD DVR; and $250 for each Genie 'Whole-Home' HD DVR, plus $100 for each 'Client' box that goes with the Genie.

So back to your original question, if you can't remember whether you bought your receiver or decided to lease it, call DIRECTV to find out.  If you bought it, you could sell it but if you leased it, you'll have to send it back to DIRECTV or face a penalty.

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