Family of 5 saves 2k a year in bills

Bills… Bills… Bills.. I hate paying bills. I mostly hate paying bills because I would rather spend my money on my family or on fun family trips. I started sorting our monthly bills basically into 2 categories: Necessity and Live Without. My necessity was water, gas, electric, auto/home insurance, etc.

I started by cutting our “Live Without” pile. We were paying $30 a month in life insurance on our kids which is great but we didn’t need 25k in life insurance per child. So I dropped our coverage and saved us 1/2 of that now only paying around $12 a month which doesn’t seem like a lot but in a year that’s over $200.

Every 6 months I call all of our billing companies and see if there are any specials going on that can lower our bills. Almost always, I can get our bills dropped by $15-$30. I decided to finally do that with our auto insurance. I called our current provider and they couldn’t lower our bill so I decided to call an insurance broker who basically is likes and you give them your auto information including drivers license information and they compile a list of every auto insurance provider out there and the cheapest you can get it.

We were paying $150 a month for our auto insurance ($900 every 6 months) we were shocked when we received our compiled list of potential insurance agencies. We switched and now are paying $380 every 6 months. Instead of paying $1800 a year on insurance we are now paying $760 a year!! I am sad to say that we had been with the previous agency for over 10 years.

Next we looked at our cellphones…something unfortunately we have become accustomed too and we believe we can’t live without them (we could if we had to)! We were paying around $150 for 2 phones with Verizon. We had unlimited text and call but NOT unlimited data. We called Verizon they offered us a lower bill around $120 but it still was not the cheapest or unlimited data. I researched it for several months and asked many customers who were currently using this plan and we decided to make the switch. We switched to StraightTalk. We pay $95 a month for unlimited text, call, and data…that’s for both (2) phones.  At first, we were a little skeptical because you do have to buy a card each month to add to it however you can have it automatically withdrawn which is what we did so it’s just like Verizon to us except cheaper. The coverage is the exact same I haven’t had any issues in the country or in the city with service/reception. You can purchase a Straighttalk card here. You can also use your existing Verizon phone or any other carrier phone. You have to put in a serial number to verify your phone will work and if it doesn’t you can purchase phones through them.

TV/CABLE!! We use Direct Tv and we just recently signed a new contract although it was for only $70 a month that is still high for television. Once our contract is up, we will be switching to the Amazon Fire TV. You have to have Amazon Prime which we already pay yearly. This is around $80 a year and you get free movies, free 2 day shipping, free books. The Fire Stick is $40 up front. You can purchase apps from it such as Netflix/Hulu/FOX Sports. If you just purchased Netflix an Hulu you would spend less than $15 a month for your television bill. You can do monthly apps such as Fox Sports for around $5 a month or Disney Jr. When you break it down for the Fire Stick and Amazon Prime its $10 a month plus the Netflix and Hulu that’s $25 a month. Even if you added a few apps you still are not paying anywhere near $70 a month.

I am continuing on my savings journey with a few more ideas for electric and gas bill. I’m always looks for new fun ways to save if you have any suggestions or things that have worked for you share them please!

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