Evaluating Your Cable Bill: 4 Ways You May Be Wasting Money

I evaluate all of my monthly expenses every few months, but my primary target this time was the cable bill. It had been creeping up over the last year or two, and it finally crossed the line of what I was willing to pay.

Evaluating the cable bill is more than just deciding whether I want cable or not. I went through every charge on the bill, making a conscious decision whether it was worth the cost.

Land Line

I’ve contemplated dropping my land line for years. I recently tracked incoming calls and found I received less than ten calls in a week, and all of them were telemarketers. It’s time to say goodbye to the landline and save the $40 a month I’m paying for the service.

If you haven’t dropped your landline, I encourage you to do the same call analysis. Most people use their cell phone for all their calls, and the landline is completely obsolete.

Broadband Service

If you have broadband, determine if it’s something you really need. For most people internet access is viewed almost as necessary as electricity, but if you don’t need it certainly drop it. If you’re keeping it, make sure the level of service is the right fit for you as many providers offer different download speeds. You may be just as happy with a little slower speed if it saves you some cash.

Cable Package

Cable television providers frequently change their cable packages. Evaluate what channels you watch, and determine if you have the right package for your viewing habits. For years I’ve had a package that included most of the movie channels. Given I can’t remember the last time I watched a movie on cable, I’ll be looking to downgrade my package.

Equipment Rental

If you have broadband service, you may be incurring a cable modem rental fee. Call your provider and ask if that fee can be waved. If they refuse, consider buying your own. You’ll have to shell out some money initially, but over the life of the product, you’ll save money.

Look at what cable boxes and DVRs you’re currently renting and ask yourself if you can get by with less. I’ve got a cable box in my son’s room that was attached to his television. He moved into an apartment at college with friends over a year ago. I’ve got a DVR attached to a television that nobody watches. This is just money I’m throwing away each and every month.

Over the last few years, incremental price increases have caused my cable bill to bloat to a level I can no longer accept. With just a few minutes of analysis of my cable bill I can bring my service in line with my usage habits, and shave a significant amount of money off my monthly bill.

How about you, Clever Friends, has your cable bill gotten out of control? When was that last time you analyzed it for waste?

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