This is Part 2 of the “Digital Landing Save Money Series,” as we look at ways you can save dough on home digital services.
Are you finding a surprising pain in your backside, perhaps in the same pocket as your wallet? Odds are pretty good that you just opened the bills from your Cable and Internet providers and found that it hurt. The average family spends about $70 a month for Cable TV, and then they pay another $40 for Internet — that’s over $100 a month for what is primarily entertainment. That is a lot of money. Many families spend less than that per month on the essentials like power and water!
Cable and Internet Providers
Rate Increases Ain’t Right
It seems that every few months, there is a price increase and you don’t recall seeing any warning. You just open your bill one day and there it is — another $10 slapped in there. Ten dollars may not seem like much at the time, but if they do it every three months that means that your bill has gone up $40 in a year. Over your two-year contract, you are paying over $900 more than you originally intended. That can be a fair amount of money. That $900 can be used for a lot of things — you can buy some new clothes, fill up the car a few times, even use it to contribute to your retirement or the kids’ college fund. In this economy, every dollar counts and all of us are feeling the crunch.
|Digital Landing – Save Money Series|
|Pt 1: Lower Your Cable Bill|
|Pt 2: Fight Rate Increases|
|Pt 3: Alternatives to Cable and Satellite TV|
|Pt 4: Tips to Saving Money On Internet|
|Pt 5: 10 Money Saving Tips & Apps|
First thing you need to do is look closely at your contract. Are you out of your promotion period? That would explain why you would have a drastic price increase. But if you have been a customer for a while, then look at the bill you just received and look at a bill from a year ago, I bet that there is still a significant price difference. You should be able to look at your old bill online on their website.
Whether you’ve been a customer for years or just a few months, it doesn’t matter. You still have a right to fight back. You don’t need to take these price increases laying down. We need to let these big companies know when we have had enough. There are a few simple steps you can take to fight that rate increase from cable and Internet providers.
- Start out by calling your cable and Internet providers and tell them that you object to the price increase. Odds are pretty good that the service rep will offer you some sort of deal. If you like the deal, then take it.
- If that doesn’t work, ask for the cancellation department. This will get you representatives who have the training and the authorization to cut you the best deal. Their job is to retain customers and prevent them from canceling their accounts. Let them know that you want to cancel your service because the bill has gone up. If they don’t offer you something good at that point then tell them that their competitor will give you comparable service for less. You’d be surprised how quickly they start offering you options to lower your bill, since they obviously don’t want you to go to the competition. If too many people jump ship, then the company starts to lose money, and lost revenue means that they will start laying people off. It is in the best interest of the rep to retain you as a customer. Also, many of the companies offer bonuses or incentives to reps that manage to retain a customer and sign them to a new contract.
- Odds are pretty good that the deal you got is for a limited time only, so mark your calendar at three or six months, so that you can review your bill and repeat your spiel — ask the company how they can help you to save money. It may seem like a tediously repetitive process, but in the end, you have the potential to save yourself hundreds of dollars.
When making your call remember the following;
- Always be friendly. It’s up to the rep what they offer you, and if they don’t like you, then they may not offer you the best possible deal.
- Quickly research competitors’ deals before making the call. You’ll need to actually name the competitor when referring to a counteroffer.
- They want your business, so make them work for it.
- You don’t HAVE to cancel your subscription just because you threatened to. If you couldn’t get a better deal, but you honestly don’t want to change providers, then don’t. You are the one in control.
People all over North America have been fighting the rate changes from their cable and Internet providers for years and saving themselves money. By complaining and objecting to rate increases, you are letting your opinion be known and joining your voice to the hundreds of others doing the same thing. Perhaps one day the corporations will hear us, and realize that it is us, the public, that can make or break their company.