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It seems almost impossible to catch a break with the cable companies. Cable bills seem to only get more expensive and often unexpectedly.
Fortunately, rather than just accepting increasing cable costs as a fact of life, there are ways you can reduce your cable bill. Here are 8 ways you can lower your cable bill today.
1. Negotiate, Negotiate, Negotiate
Check your cable company’s website and their competitors’ websites to see what your current cable package (or similar packages if you cannot find your exact package) would cost new customers. Chances are the introductory promotional cost for your cable package or something similar will be significantly cheaper than what you are paying today.
Call your cable company to highlight this fact and make a request to keep your existing package but at around the same cost that you see online.
Your cable company is a business, so it is in their best interest not to reduce rates if they can help it. Just be patient as not all representatives are helpful and you may need to call in several times before you find someone who is willing to help you.
2. Threaten to Cancel
Sometimes the only way to get any type of deal is to threaten to cancel your cable subscription. This is because the representatives, in the cancellation department, are actually authorized to offer you better rates and packages.
Explain to the representative that while you would love to keep your cable service, you can no longer afford the high cost. The representative should try to work with you and come up with different offers to prevent you from canceling your service.
There is a reason why the cancellation department is usually not called “the cancellation department” and are referred to as “the customer retention department” instead. Their job is to try to keep you on as a customer and only cancel if all else fails.
3. Get Rid of Premium Channels
Premium channels like HBO, Showtime, and Starz can set you back quite a bit on your monthly cable bills. Removing these channels from your subscription can save you up to $30 per month.
If not being able to watch your favorite shows such as “Game of Thrones,” “Homeland,”, or “Outlander” is too much to bear, then you can get rid of those channels when the season is done and add them back when the season starts up again. You can also look into subscribing to their streaming services such as HBO Now, Showtime Anywhere, or Starz, which can sometimes be cheaper than what the cable company is charging you.
4. Return Additional Receivers
Do you have more than one receiver in your home? Perhaps in guest rooms and other rooms that aren’t really being used. If so, returning those additional receivers can save you up to $10 per receiver per month.
5. Ditch the DVR
Did you get DVR to prevent you from missing your favorite show? Fortunately, most networks let you watch your favorite show on-demand by the very next day.
Not being able to fast-forward through commercials is almost as if you didn’t miss your show in the first place. Plus dropping DVR service can easily save you a few bucks every month.
6. Bundle Your Services
Rather than get your television service from one provider, your internet service from another, and your phone service from a third, bundle the services together under one provider can save you as much as $55 a month.
Just be careful not to sign up for any additional channels, phone packages (i.e. international calling, second line for fax), or super fast internet speed that you don’t need. Remember you are trying to save money and not end up paying the same or more for your bundled package.
7. Downgrade Your Plan
And if you are already paying for those extra channels and services mentioned above, it is time to downgrade your plan to one that best suits your needs.
Downgrading your plan can save you as much as $35 per month with most providers.
8. Use Your Own Modem
Just as cable boxes come at a cost, most cable companies also charge you a monthly rental fee to use their modem in order for you to connect to the internet. And this rental fee can cost up to $15 per month.
Fortunately, most cable companies allow you to purchase your own third-party modem and not have to rent from them. The initial one-time cost may sting some, but the modem will pay for itself in just a few month’s time.
Be sure to check with your cable company to get their list of approved modems before you start shopping around and buying a modem.
Whether you use one or all of the above ways to lower your cable bill, the savings can prove to be quite significant. If you have any other tips on how to lower one’s cable bill, please share in the comments below!