Monday, September 14, 2009

Bills, Bills, Bills

Sometimes paying bills just makes me a little bit crazy. Maybe it is because we have entirely too many bills!!

Hubby and I just recently started Baby Step 1 of Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace and have been seriously examining our bills. By the end of this month we will be done with step 1 and on to step two. But what have we done so far to start freeing up money?

We did start doing some money saving things last summer when I started couponing. Obviously the coupons alone made a major change in how much money we were spending. I went from spending and average of $300-$350 a payday on groceries, household supplies and dog food. To spending $150-$200 a payday. Also this year I have been adding in birthday gifts for friends into that amount and I added in school supplies this year. Those items were never added in to my pre-couponing amounts.

The second thing we did was make a change with our satellite. Now I have to confess I don't think I could ever do away with t.v. I am such a night time t.v. junkie. However I was still hoping we could drop our bill. I went to dish networks website and found out they had added a new family friendly package that was only $24.99 a month, plus the cost of DVR. We also kept Starz but it was a significant drop from what we were spending monthly.

A couple month ago when we started considering doing the Dave Ramsey thing to get totally out of debt we started really looking at what we were spending every month. Where else could we make changes?

Cell phones! We have 3, hubby's, mine and the girls share one. I have always hated the cell phone bill but need the cell phone. At first we thought we would drop the girls and get them a Go phone, just so we could be in contact with them when they go somewhere. So hubby called up Alltell and had a nice conversation with the phone rep. After he got off he told me our phone bill went from $140 to $85 and we didn't lose anything!! $55 off and didn't lose anything at all!!
So guys I am telling ya, call up your cell phone company and see if they can hook you up.

Next I had Starz canceled. We had been carrying it along with our Family pack for the last year and well it wasn't even being watched anymore. Also when I canceled it I realized it had went up $2 in the past year. So dropping Starz is an extra $13 a month.

The internet/house phone is another pet peeve. We do not use the house phone. There is not even a phone plugged into the wall. As a matter of fact we have a Magic Jack for a house phone. Yet we still pay a house phone bill.

You see the only company in my area that does Dry Loop is Verizon. Verizon is our phone/internet provider. We have high speed DSL and love it. However our bill is $85 a month! I called before about the Dry Loop and it is $50 before tax and they have to send someone out to the house to run new stuff and I just didn't feel like messing with it.

Thankfully my BFF was over and she was telling me how she got her phone/internet bill dropped. So we just went online here, chose the Good Double Play bundle and ordered it online saving an extra $5. Now our bill will be $45 plus tax, probably around $50. We will now save $30-$35 a month on this bill and all it took was a few clicks and we were done. I got confirmation a couple days later that it had been changed.

My point is that it dosen't hurt to ask. Bills that you may think can't be changed, can! Just in the last month we have cut $100 off 3 bills and I can do a lot with and extra $100 a month.

4 comments:

Sonia said...

Boy, we really need to do this, we have verizon for our cell phones and we pay $150 and thats with a discount, I wonder if they would work with us? Also our Internet will be going up to $43 but I think I'm calling them if they wont keep it at $19.99 I will go somewhere else. We really need to cut our bills

Amber said...

I would definitely give it a shot!! I was thrilled that our cell company was willing to knock down our bill.

Dylan said...

Amber nice blog, and congrats to you and your husband on on effectively cutting back on your cell bills. I wanted to add, however, that while you were able to seriously slash your wireless costs, you still might be able to further lower what you pay. I work in the consumer advocacy division of the company Validas, where we electronically audit and subsequently reduce the average cell bill by 22 percent through our website, http://www.fixmycellbill.com. Put simply, Validas guards against the frivolous and unnecessary charges that over-inflate an estimated 80 percent of cell bills. You can find out for free if fixmycellbill.com can modify your plan to better suit your individual needs by going to the website.

For more info, check out Validas in the media, most recently on Fox News at http://www.myfoxtampabay.com/dpp/consumer/conlaw/lower_cell_phone_bills_072409.

Good luck on saving more money in this tough economy.

Dylan
Consumer Advocacy, FixMyCellBill.com

Anonymous said...

Enjoyed the post - I just posted about Ooma, a VOIP service that is VERY reasonable - you only pay for the equipment, then the service is free. Here's more info about it:

http://www.omniswami.com/2009/09/free-voip-home-phone-service-from-ooma-ooma-review/

Best, Dave