Saturday, August 30, 2008

Chopping costs slowly

Yesterday I finally crossed a couple more things off my lists of "to do" items.

I called the phone/Internet provider and shaved $20 off my monthly bill. I initally switched providers (we have two, one now owns the other, so any potential savings are marginal to zero) as I wanted a land line, and the alternative to cable Internet was ADSL. Bundled, the two cost me - now - $115 a month.

I also called and lowered the limit on my credit card. Because it's a secured card, I'm pretty sure I can't negotiate the interest rate, but I think I will try calling and see what I can do. I lowered the limit so that the less I have, the less trouble I can get into. And besides, it's all earning interest, but not the good kind.

So my monthly fixed expenses are as follows:

Rent: $550
Cell phone: $50
Phone/Internet: $115
Cable: $60 (I am having THE worst time letting go...)
Student Loan: $60
Car Insurance: $51.92
Savings: $250
WoW account: $15

So, there is a potential savings there of $125 if I cancel the cell phone, the cable and the stupid WoW (World of Warcraft) account. The WoW people aren't open on weekends, so I'll have to wait until Tuesday morning now, as it's the Labour Da, weekend, but it will be the next thing to go, as I really don't need (and, honestly, want) the game anymore. I rarely play it, so it's really pointless to keep paying for it.

After that, I'm going to look into changing my cell phone account, if it's possible. I have 9 months left on the contract, however, so I have three options. A) I can cancel the service and pay out what's left on the contract ($20 per month for each month left, which would be $180) or b) see if I can "sell" the phone and remaining contract to someone else, or c) see if there's a way to go to pay as you go instead of the monthly fee. Yet another option is to keep the cell phone and get rid of the land line, but that's a bit more complicated as I need a landline to have Internet, so I'm paying for it anyway. The easiest and cheapest option is to find someone to take over the contract from me, then I can go to "pay as you go". I like the security of a cell phone, particularly in the winter, so I'm not ready to let it go entirely, but I need a cheaper option.

And that leaves the cable. The easiest thing to do is just pull the plug and have it done with, but why can't I let go? I have DVDs galore to watch, dozens of books to read and god knows what else to do instead, so it's not like I'd lack for entertainment. I'd really miss my reno shows, though...

I know, I know. Excuses, excuses - it's easy for me to justify having it. It's not as bad for me as smoking (and I managed to quit that cold-turkey 12.5 yrs ago), but it's still an addiction, my last big one, actually and it's really frustrating me that I can't simply turn it off. I suppose the fact that I'm actually watching less is a start and I was doing very well in June/July, when I was getting caught up on a gazillion DVDs and movies and really enjoying NOT watching TV.

Argh!

5 comments:

Canadian Saver said...

Hmmm you won't be getting any coaxing from me regarding the cable, as I don't think I could give it up either. I don't go out to the movies so this is my entertainment.

I also need the peace of mind a cell phone gives me. Pay as you go sounds like a great idea! Hope you can get out of the contract...

notesfromthefrugaltrenches.com said...

It's a balance isn't it? You need to not feel "poor" but have other things in life that bring enjoyment.

Do you watch a lot of tv? I don't have cable, but get 4 channels without, so I'm OK.If I didn't get any channels I probably couldn't do it.

GOOD LUCK you're doing great!

Frugal Dreamer said...

Glad to have found your blog! I personally don't have cable and never could get into TV, but if you do, why not price out what a bundle with internet, phone & cable would be. I know in my location, savings are close to $50/month! Definitely something to consider!! Good luck to you! :)

Christine said...

I commend you on ridding of your WOW account. My son...would beg to differ. ;)

I wish I remembered the name of the company that internet tv that has like loads of good tv shows for a few dollars per month. I found it on some PF blog. If I find it again, I will let you know!

Good luck!

letters to elijah said...

regarding the cable... try hulu.com they have tons of shows online and it's all free! I would drop my satellite but I'm still under contract...

I like your site :)