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HOW TO REDUCE YOUR CABLE BILL
The best decision I ever made to reduce my monthly expenses was to get rid of cable but before I did that, I reduced my cable bill as much as I could.
In a recent study by DecisionData.org, the average household cable package is now $217.42 per month!
Not to mention that most cable users are also subscribed to streaming services (Netflix, Hulu, etc) on top of their cable bill.
So how can you cut your cable bill?
1. Start with a good cable promotion
Try and get the best deal when you first sign up. I waited to sign up for my cable plan until they were offering a $400 gift card, free movie channels for a year, and zero setup fee.
Update 2020: I finally cut the cord! Check out how to get rid of cable and still watch what you want!
When you do this be sure to read all the fine print and see if you have to cancel anything before the promo ends to avoid any charges.
If you’re still stuck with a contract with your current cable provider, then don’t be shy to call and ask for a better deal! Tell them you’re a loyal customer and that you want to know what they can do for you.
Most of the time they will offer you something. Tell them right out you’re looking to lower your bill and you want to know what your options are.
2. Buy your cable equipment instead of renting it
Most cable bills consist of rental equipment fees. You may be paying for cable boxes you hardly use! Consider downgrading your boxes and returning a few if you have multiple. This should not affect your contract if you’re in one.
Look at your bills and see what equipment you’re paying for and see if it would be cheaper to just purchase that equipment upfront. Depending on how long you’ve been in your plan, this may be a better deal.
For example, most of us bundle our internet with our cable which is an added cost. To save money, buy your router instead of paying a monthly “rental” fee.
If you’re in a 2-year plan at $10 a month to rent the router then your out of pocket for the two years is $240 versus buying the router from them for say $150 (or cheaper if you shop around). Ask about other equipment you may be able to purchase instead of rent.
I did this over 3 years ago and still have the same router so that decision has saved me a ton!
They may try and sell you on the latest and greatest but in all honesty, I work from home and my 3-year-old router works perfectly fine.
3. Decide what you really need
Do you need a DVR? Most shows are On-Demand and can be watched at any time so really think about what you would use the DVR for.
I thought I would miss my DVR but I don’t miss it at all.
I was a huge DVR fan, I loved the fact that I could pause a show and watch my favorite shows anytime I wanted to. But now with everything being on-demand and able to be streamed as well there really wasn’t a need for one.
If you decide you still want one, do you need one in every room? Or will one DVR for the family work? Do you need a box in every room? Remember like I mentioned above, you’re paying a monthly rental fee for those boxes.
Every little expense adds up.
Downsizing your Internet service may also be an option. If you’re paying extra for the most bandwidth available, consider whether you need it. Start with the lowest plan and upgrade if needed.
I have several devices on wi-fi and I use the lowest bandwidth plan and it works just fine.
They will tell you that you need more but I work from home and have never had any issues on a 200mbps plan and was also fine on a lower plan. So depending on how many people are in your home and how the service is in your area, start low!
4. Take advantage of reward & loyalty programs
Check with your cable provider to see what types of loyalty rewards they may have. Verizon offers Verizon rewards which are an excellent way to rent free movies or cash out for gift cards. Take advantage of referral programs as well. Refer friends and get money or rewards.
Some plans also now offer free Netflix or Hulu and other freebies so make sure you check.
5. Get rid of cable altogether
I’m slowly replacing my cable with HD Antennas in my home. Each of my cable boxes was costing me $10 a month.
Update 2020: I finally cut the cord and got rid of cable completely! See what I’m using now, here.
I grabbed this HD ANTENNA from Amazon and it paid for itself in less than two months. The longer-range the more channels you should be able to grab. I bought the 30 mile one and where I live I’m able to get a bunch of local channels and my TV is super clear! It actually looks better than cable!
I also grabbed a Fire TV from Amazon and use Amazon Prime for streaming movies and NetFlix can be streamed from the Fire TV as well.
Need more assistance? Check out my article on How to Get Rid of Cable and Still Watch What You Want!
Do you have tips on ways to reduce your cable bill? Share them in the comments.