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Keeping Our Cable Bill Tolerable Instead of OH HELLS NO

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If you’ve been reading for years, you know that we are cable-cutting flip-floppers. In 2014, we cut cable to save $100 a month. I usually could call annually and get them to keep our bill reasonable, but in 2014, they decided to call my supposed bluff. I decided not to bluff.

Restarted Cable in 2015

BUT in April 2015, 8 months later, our roommate and my close friend, Mandy, called “Uncle”. She wanted DVR again and was willing to chip in $50 a month. Mr. BFS also missed some of his live sports.

So, I took AT&T up on a deal and we signed back up again. Our bill went back from $65 a month with fees and taxes to $125 for a few months and then finally to the $150 a month, where it settled.

But our 1 year deal ended this past month and the bill jumped up yet again to $195.

Maybe Cancelling Again

I didn’t want to cover an unbudgeted $45 a month for a service that I really don’t use very much. I mean, Mr. BFS and I enjoy using the DVR’d shows a couple of times a week. But we both stopped watching as much as we did before we took 8 months off, and we never really got fully addicted again.

Mandy really enjoys the service and several shows. So I ended up asking Mandy what she would like for me to do. First, I’d call to see what deal I could get. But then I wanted to know whether I was getting it cancelled or if Mandy would mind covering the difference.

Obviously, I didn’t expect to convince AT&T of a good deal again.

LOVE Being Wrong

I decided to tackle the issue last Friday. I logged in online and tried the chat box. But after 20 minutes of back and forth while multi-tasking, the chat box guy had to admit he couldn’t help me save real money and suggested I call customer service.

So I called and went through another 30 minute back and forth with a nice guy who noticed me using the phrase “or we will need to cancel”. Those are apparently magic words that led him to transfer me over to the Customer Loyalty Department.

And after another 30+ minutes of explaining the whole situation and some more back and forth, the nice lady decided to “save me some real money”. She ended up signing me up for free HBO and getting me into another 1 year contract in exchange for a rate that was even better than we had before. It will be $120 with fees and taxes for 3 months and either stay there or go up to $140 total if we end up keeping the movie channels. By this time next year, we’ll know who is still living with us and what we’ll need.

I’m considering this a win for now.  We will cut cable again, but we can wait until our roommates move out now.  🙂


Tips to Keep the Cable Bill Tolerable

  • Be ready to cancel.
  • Explain the situation right away – you need to keep the services you have but for a lot less OR you’ll have to cancel.
  • Speak with the Customer Loyalty Department or Retention (whatever they call it with your company).
  • Aim for a deal as good as when you first signed up.
  • Avoid signing up for different services or even free offers UNLESS you can put the cancellation date in your calendar and will be available to follow through with it.

Good luck!

FYI:  I worked at a dead end cubicle job from 2005-2011 for about $30,000 per year.  I went self-employed in July 2011 and make between $70,000-$90,000 through blogging, professional pet sitting, hubby's reffing, and our rental home.  If you’d like to start your own site (link to my free step-by-step guide), I highly suggest checking out Bluehost (my referral link with a nice discount for you, PLUS a free custom header banner from me!).  Please contact me any time at budgetingfunstuff*at*gmail*dot*com with questions or just to brainstorm! I’d love to help!
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6 thoughts on “Keeping Our Cable Bill Tolerable Instead of OH HELLS NO

  1. I gave up cable over a year ago and haven’t regretted it for a moment. Congrats on your good deal, but personally spending over an hour and a half ‘negotiating’ with those con artists isn’t worth any deal I’d get at this point. I don’t miss the pricing games they pull one iota! My Roku combined with Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime give me more than enough entertainment to keep me distracted from real-life work. LOL.

  2. Out of the last five times I’ve gone for reductions, I’ve been successful 100% of the time. Of those five times, once I’ve gotten them to go back to the old price, twice I got them to come down between the old and higher price, and twice actually got them to go below what I’d previously been paying.

  3. @Amanda, thanks!

    @Denise, it’s worth it when the people who want it are paying $650 for a room every month. 🙂

    @Michelle, we missed it when we didn’t have it but learned to live without it and now it’s not that useful to us. BUT, when I’m really only paying $35 a month for it, it’s way easier to enjoy.

    @Money Beagle, congratulations!!!

  4. We’ve been able to score some reductions in cost over the last year. But I’m to the point where I’ve had enough of Comcast. We’ll be reducing our $160/month bill to $40/month when we switch. We’re forgoing all video services and only keeping home security with Comcast (for now) and getting internet service from another provider for another $40/month. We’ve vetted out our need for their DVR and video with having other streaming options and I’m working on setting up a computer based DVR. This will cut our bill in half.

    I hope to say we won’t be back once we actually cut the cord, but who knows. I can see us flip-flopping as well.


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