Tips for Lowering Three Major Bills Over the Phone

It’s no surprise that in today’s debt-ridden economy, we’re always looking for ways to save money. It seems that while we’re taking on more debt, the bills keep getting higher. Fortunately, there are several key ways you can save on three major bill headaches: your auto insurance bill, your cable bill, and your phone bill. And cutting costs doesn’t always have to mean cutting corners. By following these legitimate tips, you could save a few hundred per year the legal way. Here’s how you can lower these three major bills over the phone:

Auto Insurance

There are several ways you can lower your auto insurance bill by just making a phone call. However, these different methods aren’t always obvious. According to Mercury Auto Insurance, “There are plenty of insurance cost cutters, but many people don’t reach out to their insurance providers to discuss ways they can save.” For starters, if you have multiple people insured, you should be able to receive a bundle discount. If you have your teens insured, some of them may even be able to get a discount based on their grade point average.

A clean driving record and defensive driving classes can also be great cases for lowering your auto insurance premiums. Before you take your accident prevention course, call your insurance provider and ask them if they offer discounts for taking a defensive driving course. In some instances, it may even make it easier for you to lower any points you might have.

Lastly, some other ways to cut costs include installing anti-theft technology (which benefits you and your insurance company), improving your credit rating, and opting to take public transportation here and there for lower mileage and premiums.

Cable Bill

Just last week, the Leichtman Research Group found that the average cable bill was $107 per month. Many of us depend on our cable as a primary form of entertainment, even if we have other streaming services like Netflix and Hulu. While cutting off this luxury exclusively might not seem very plausible, there are still various ways you can lower your bill to save a little more annually.

First, take a look at your current usage. A report conducted by the Nielsen Group discovered that, while most people have about 200 channels on their plan on average, they only actually use 20 of them. Instead of wasting money on these extra channels, why not downsize your current cable package? You can also save money by eliminating some of the unused cable boxes in your home, and getting rid of optional services like DVR.

Lastly, you should do your research with other cable companies. If you find that your current cable company isn’t willing to work with you to help you save, consider moving to another company. Even if you’ll be charged a cancellation fee, your savings might offset this. In this case, you should make your cable provider aware of this. Providers will often do what they can to retain their customers, and therefore tend to sweeten the deal moments before you officially cut the cord.

Cell Phone Bill

Ah, your cell phone. One thing is certain: you can’t do without it. Unlike a cable bill, your communication with your work, family, and friends is a necessity, and not a luxury. And if you’re like most people, your cell phone bill is a major costly expense every month—but it doesn’t have to be. Especially when hidden fees on cell phone bills tend to be common.

Family share plans are a great way to save a little extra money each month. You should also pay attention to your data usage, which can eat up plenty of pennies. To begin with, you should always be using data while you’re over a Wi-Fi network. However, you can also analyze data usage across different apps on certain devices, like the iPhone. Simply head over to your Settings, click Cellular, and select the apps that you don’t want to use with data.

Lastly, consider moving to a no-contract phone company. Depending on where you live, this could be a much better cost-efficient option for you. Most people believe that no-contract services like Metro (which was recently purchased by T-Mobile) don’t work as well as their contract counterparts. This couldn’t further from the truth, and in some cases, you’ll find the opposite to be true. For as little as $30 per month, a Metro service with unlimited call and text could do the trick. And if you don’t like the service, simply turn it off without facing any fees or penalty charges.

One thing to keep in mind with no contract plans, however, if that you typically have to purchase the phone outright and there are no “upgrade” options. This might be a little more challenging if you want the newest phone technology and can’t afford to shell out a bulk sum. However, buying a phone outright is always cheaper in the long-run than paying in installments.

photo credit: cafecredit Save Money via photopin (license)

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