Sunday, December 28, 2008

Bundles Not Always Cheapest, Shop Around

This is less about being green and more about saving $$$.

We are moving into our new home on fri/sat/sun (in 4 days) ~does happy dance~

So it's time to figure out who we are using for services like TV, Internet, and Land-Line Phone. The cheapest option is obviously to go without TV, and even without Phone if you just want to use your cell phone. You can also do away with the internet.

Now, if you want these services for some reason or another anyways but aren't sure you can afford them, SHOP AROUND!!! Even if you can afford them, still SHOP AROUND!!!!

I know it is so, so easy to look at the bundles at places like AT&T, especially now that they include cell phones in the bundles and think that's a great price, and it is, but it's not the best, and your options are limited. You may be paying for more service then you want or need, and so your bill could be lower if gotten from different providers.

At a place like the above you can get all four- Cell & House Phone, Internet and Television Entertainment for about $150. You can get Cell & House Phone, Internet for about $130 and House Phone, Internet and Television Entertainment for about $109 (notice the change, that's because you are paying for a higher cell phone package with the other one then you get in the four way bundle) and you can get House Phone and Internet for about $65 together. So that means you that even shopping around in the same company you could buy the House/Internet bundle and then the cell phone plan that you get in the 4 way bundle seperatly for $45 and get all three for $110, way cheaper then the $130 in the bundle of all three of them.

It can get even cheaper though. Call your area's leading home phone business(es), they normally have much better deals. The cheapest in our area for unlimited calling in town is $17 (we would be paying more through outside companies for the automatic free unlimited long distance, which we don't need because we have cell phones that we use for long distance)

Shop around for internet service, you will be amazed at the variation, especially between dial up and the different speeds of high speed. You can get people pc dial up for $10 Although if you are going to get accelerated it is $16 so if you can swing it I suggest just spending the extra $4 to get the lowest setting of high speed from another provider instead, but $4 is $4, do what your budget can do, sometimes that small of an amount can make the difference between what you can afford. the cheapest we have found available high speed at the lowest level (all we really need) that is available in our area is $19.95 from AT&T.

We use AT&T cell phone with an added line already, we are in a contract right now so that part of shopping around is not vallid for us right now, but you bet we will when this contract is up again! ;-)

We looked around and found that our cheapest option looked to be Direct TV $29.99 a month for 45 channels that include all but one of the channels we ever watch (the green channell unfortunatly is not on there, but I guess I can live without it) Our next cheapest option is $39.99 from dish network for 100 channels. We off course will go with the $29.99.

So lets see, we pay $55 for our cell phones (that's 2 not just the one provided in the 4 way bundle we talked about to beginn with) With what we've found we will pay $17 for our Home Phone. $19.95 for our High Speed Internet and $29.99 for Television Entertainment. That means that for all four we will pay a total of $121.94 for all four together each month. That's a $28 savings a month from that bundle price. Granted that is before tax and extras on the phone like text messaging and roadside assistance. We are doing a deal with free installation from Direct TV and a free box.

My main point is SHOP AROUND!!! $28.06 may not seem like a bunch but that's $336.72 a year less that we are spending and still getting a cell phone for each of us. If it was just the one cell phone like the bundle then we would really be saving $38.06 a month and $456.72 a year. For us these sort of numbers make the difference between being able to afford it and not.

Since the cell phone wasn't really applicable, if we don't count the cell phone in it then we are paying $66.94 for Televesion Entertainment, Internet and Home Phone, that is less then $2 more then what the bundle of just Home Phone and Internet cost and $42.06 less then what the bundle of all three was. That's saving us $504.72 a year!!!

Who knows, if you look around you might be able to find a better deal- just make sure you share! ;-)

Just remember to never stretch yourself too thin, always try to leave something to work with, just in case, if even at the cheapest these numbers take you to the max (or close to) of your budget then my advice is just to live without them until that changes, and I have taken that advice before. It's better then being in hot water with finances!

*Clip Art provided through free clip art site, if you know of any used here that is not meant to be free please let me know & I'll replace it.

About Me

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I'm a semi crunchy stay at home wife and mama of two boys. Extend Breastfeed, Cloth diaper, Cosleep, Babywear, Homeschool, Homebirth. My sons and I have some serious health concerns (allergies, growth hormone, kidney, lung, spine, etc...). We didn't realize they were genetic (or I had) until after Trace's birth. Tristian had some big medical and possibly/probably autism related delays in early childhood but also taught himself to read at 2yrs and started on math equations at 4yrs. Trace is bit delayed across the board by about 6 months, but as he's 1yr+ behind in height... it's not very noticable ;-) Trace is very musical and hands on. With plenty of common sense, love, good doctors and faith we are doing wonderfully!

This wonderful chapter in my life of discovering the green subculture has (mostly) ended. Living green on a budget has changed from the thrill of discovery to habit. This blog remains in rememberance- with occasionally crossover posting. I hope you join me- the same green mama on a budget, in a new blog celebrating life's daily experiences- LIFE O'KAY Still lots of crafts & crunchiness- with even more sweet family moments.

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