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I easily cut over $160 from my monthly expenses by eliminating only one bill.
How? I Cut the Cord!
The price of cable is astronomical nowadays! At one point, it was costing over $200/month for a bundle package of cable and internet.
Realistically, cable and satellite TV have way too many channels for most people to ever find time to watch. I feel like it’s just a tremendous waste of money (and time) overall.
However, I love coming home in the evenings and relaxing in front of the tube to unwind before going to bed. So here’s what I did to save money but also keep in-home entertainment:
1. I cancelled cable and got high-speed internet only (at $49.99/month). The introductory price was I think $34.99/month, but then increased to $65/month after 12 months. I called my service company and was able to renegotiate the price down to $49.99. Make sure you shop around for prices and negotiate/renegotiate prices. This alone can save you tons of money.
2. I spent $35 (one-time purchase) and got a Mohu Leaf TV Antenna to receive free, over-the-air local HD channels. This works great and I get all the local channels, including the news. There’s plenty of antenna options out there, and for cheaper than $35 too. I just like the flat option of the Leaf and I can hide it behind the TV so it isn’t even visible.
3. I spent $35 (one-time purchase and I got it on sale) and got an Amazon Fire stick for streaming Netflix, Hulu, Sling and tons of other apps. There are many free to download apps with free streaming content. You don’t need an Amazon Prime membership to utilize the Fire stick, but if you have a membership, this is the best streaming device to have and then you have access to all of Amazon’s streaming content as well. There are other great streaming devices such as Roku, AppleTV, and Google Chromecast.
4. I definitely get my binge-on with Netflix and Hulu. This costs approx $16/month total and I get so much content. (Note: Hulu was running a promotional price of $5.99/month for 12 months when I signed up). Netflix costs the most at $10/month.
5. I love my HGTV (especially Fixer Upper with Joanna Gaines and House Hunters), and for only $20/month (and no contract) I can use Sling to stream HGTV and other live TV shows such as CNN, AMC, ESPN, History, A&E, and more. It’s a pretty awesome deal for $20/month. There are several, customizable “A La Carte” channel packages available and premium channels like HBO and Starz too.
**HBO Hack: If you are a Game of Thrones fan like I am, but hate to pay the HBO premium all-year long, get Sling. You can add HBO for $15/month with no contract and then cancel it hassle-free when you decide. You can do this all online as well.
I have now been cable-free for almost 3 years now and I don’t miss it at all. I absolutely don’t miss paying over $200/month either.
At this point with Netflix, Hulu and Sling I pay about $36/month and it’s probably still way too much content for me to watch, so I may end up dropping Sling to save another $20/month, because let’s face it, TV can be a major time-sucker.
In the end, I am still saving over $160 a month (that’s $1,920 per year) over having cable.
**Side Story: When my dad (who is over 60) found out how much money I was saving by cutting the cord, he decided to ditch cable as well (he was paying over $120 for just basic cable+internet). He bought a Roku Express and streams Neflix and Sling. He cut the cord almost 2 years ago, and doesn’t miss cable at all. Pretty “Millennial” of him, huh?**
Your turn: How do save money on your must-have entertainment options?