As some of the Twitter folken are aware, I’m in the process of finalizing details for my forthcoming transition back to the East Coast for my usual summer of Sox. At some point between May 1 and, say, May 15th, I’ll be pulling up stakes and migrating from Denver to the family place in Georgetown, ME.
Unlike last year, however, the plan this summer is to rent my loft here in town out rather than letting it lie fallow. This introduces the typical moving complications that I’m used to dealing with, but one that I’m not. One that involves telephony. One that I’d love suggestions on.
Herewith a description of the problem, past solutions, and so on.
A few years back, we acquired the 866-RED-MONK vanity toll-free number, which has proven reasonably popular. At least among the non-PR types that don’t default to my cell phone given any opportunity. The way it works currently is this: AT&T holds the toll-free, and redirects to a number of our choice. It used to be our number in Maine when I was based there, but these days it points to the landline here at the home office. This works fine when I’m here, and less fine when I’m not.
When I’m not here, obviously I’d prefer to not have the toll free point to a line here. Initially, I thought Grand Central would prove to be the perfect solution, and tried to point our toll-free at that. AT&T disagreed, and declined to point our toll-free at a number that didn’t have a physical address associated with it. Ultimately, my “brilliant solution” was forwarding the landline to Grand Central, so someone calling the toll free would get bounced as follows:
Toll-Free==>Landline==>Grand Central==>Grand Central #s
Fun stuff. With renters poised to occupy the space here, however, I’m not going to be able to pull that off this summer, as I need to disconnect the line. Ergo, I need a more elegant, not to mention permanent, solution.
Here are the things I’m thinking of.
- Move the Landline to VOIP, Point the Toll Free at That:
This has the same problem as Grand Central – the lack of a physical address – though I could probably fake this better simply by billing it to the office here in Denver. Still, it’s unclear if I could sneak this by AT&T.
- Move the Toll Free to Someone Other Than AT&T:
I’d be happy to do this, but know very little about toll-free providers. Particularly whether any of them are VOIP friendly or not.
- Lose the Toll Free:
It’s not essential to our business, but I’d prefer not to lose it if that can be avoided.
- Get a Landline in Maine, Point the Toll Free at That:
This is problematic, due to the fact that getting additional lines at the family place is complicated (we’re on an island), and that I don’t typically rent an office for the entire duration of my stay.
- Point the Landline at Another RedMonk Employee:
We could do this, of course, but given that a great many of the people that dial the toll-free are looking for me specifically, this would be less than convenient.
As you can see, none of my options are looking great. Those of you with more VOIP expertise than I possess are actively encouraged to suggest anything that might work.