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Coupon Abbreviations
  • SC = Store Coupon
  • MC = Manufacturer Coupon
  • SS = Smart Source
  • RP = Red Plum
  • PG = Proctor and Gamble
Coupon Terms
  • WYB = When You Buy
  • B1G1 = Buy One Get One Free
  • .75/1 = 75 cents off one item
  • .75/3 = 75 cents off three items
  • EXP = Expiration Date

Going Nuts? I can help you understand coupon terms and abbreviations

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I recently spent some time on our local NBC news affiliate to talk about how we can all save money on our bills!  Monthly bills can feel very overwhelming and also can make you feel very stuck, but there are ways to save on them! If you’re willing to make a few changes, you can really save quite a bit of money.

Tips to Save on Your Monthly Bills:

Internet

-Check and compare rates from all companies.

-Call companies with competitor rates in hand and see if they will match or beat the rate.

-Never rent your cable modem. Renting your modem costs $5.99 per month.  You can find new or used ones for as low as $40.  Look on your cable providers website to see a list of acceptable modems (Time Warner in particular is very picky).

Phone

-Drop your home phone.   I’d say over 50% of people I know don’t have a home phone anymore.  You don’t need one to get internet either (and don’t let a phone company tell you that you do).

-Cellphones: Join multiple family members on one plan.  It is only $30 per month for another line versus $75+ to have your own plan.

Cable

-Get rid of cable.  I know that is hard for some of you… I’ve been telling you this one for years.  Cable doesn’t feed you, clothe you or keep you warm.  If things are tight this should be the first thing to go!

-Get a streaming device such as a Roku or Google Chromecast.  This is a one time cost to buy the device and will let you watch tons of things over the internet on your TV (no new TV needed).  There are CNN and Fox News channels, the Weather Channel and so much more that is free.

-If you want more to watch subscribe to Netflix or Hulu for $7.99 a month or look into a free trial of Amazon prime.

Electricity

-Sign up for budget billing to make your monthly bill the same every month.  This doesn’t save you anything other than a small heart attack when you open the bill after subzero temperatures in January.  It makes your bill the same amount every month.  If you end up over paying throughout the year then your last bill of the month will be a lot less.  If you underpay they spread out the amount over the next years bills.

What are some other ways you save on your monthly bills?

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    • Barbara

      We will never go back to contract cell phone plans again! We save so much money and stress using pre-paid cell phones. StraightTalk is our favorite. Recently my phone quit working and when I went to look on their website for a new one, I ended up getting one for free with the purchase of my monthly card…with free shipping too! ($30 for all.)

      • Donna

        Absolutely – the only way to go is prepaid or pay as you go and Straighttalk works great for me, I have my husband on TracFone and my son on TMobile. What a difference in our cell phone charges. I will figure out which is best for whom and go from there. Right now we went from over $200/month to less than $70 and I hope to do better.

      • Sandy

        Barbara – are you restricted quite a bit on talk text web etc? Or do they have good plans as far as smartphones go?

    • CathyV

      I save on my cell phone bill by using Solavei! They pay me $5 a month for every member I refer as long as they continue service. Between a few close friends, my mom and dad, and my husband, I have FREE service with plans starting as low as $29!

      And when I use the purple pay card where the money is deposited, I get cash back at tons of retailers.

      Feel free to click through my profile and send me a message on Facebook if you’d like to hear more about it.

    • Amie

      We used to pay $120 per month with Verizon, but switched to pageplus cellular, who use Verizon’s towers, and pay $24 per month for 2 phones. We have limited plans, but since we mostly communicate online, it works for us.

    • Jacki Gross Osborne

      People think I’m nuts for only having free over the air HDTV, but I put my savings away and I use the internet to watch shows I miss!

    • Stephanie

      We have no cable but subscribe to Netflix. We use Boostmobile for our cell phones. My husband pays $35 for his unlimited text, voice and data. I pay $45 for unlimited text, voice, data AND international calls to my family all over the world!! International texting included!

      • Liz

        What international plan do you have? :)

      • noetab

        can you share? I’m interested too…

        • Mindy

          If you need something for international calling then look into Viber with any smartphone. You can also text for free internationally with Whatsapp or Voxer.

    • Debbie

      I’ve been thinking of switching to roku, can any one share their experience with it? do you need a receiver for each tv?

      • Nicole

        We just got roku, and we are very happy with it. I believe you do need a box per tv, but remember it streams via the Internet, so you will need a good Internet plan to be watching on more than one tv at the same time. Just do your research. I think those people who are dissatisfied with roku just weren’t aware of exactly what it is. It isn’t going to be like regular tv. We live ours. Worth the money we are saving!

      • bookie1973

        I have two roku and have never have a problem. I subscribe to hulu plus and nexflix cost is $18. “Roku players are the easiest to use and have the biggest and best selection of entertainment choices with over 1,000 channels, including Netflix, M-GO, HBO GO, Hulu Plus, VUDU, Amazon Instant Video, PBS, A&E, History and lots more.” You can rent movies from your house via roku . I got a walmart money visa debit card that I add money to-$3 load charge .But I do not have to worries about someone overcharging my card.

      • elje

        Roku is good. I need one higher than basic internet plan to be able to use internet when computer is in use.
        its worth it.

    • musicladycarla

      great tips! Thanks for sharing!

    • Lauren Wickersheim

      I’m so confused about home phone – Verizon said we HAD to get one in order to get internet, but we never use it (I don’t even know the number) and all we get are telemarketer calls. I want to get rid of it, but Verizon said it was required.

      • guest

        verizon uses dsl – which means needing a phone line. that is what my hubby says – he works on installing cable and phone lines within his company (he does not work for verizon though)

      • Jennie

        You don’t need to keep an actual phone plugged in, just have the wiring available for the DSL.

      • Sandy

        That’s odd – I told the sales person at verizon that we had ATT internet because we had ATT phone. She said we did not need phone to get internet and that Verizon had internet.

    • Debbie Carr

      does the roku or google chromecast use up your internet time. We are limited to our time ( can’t think of the internet lingo that it is called. i have never heard of it but would be interested in finding out more. We only have local channels which does not provide us with much of a selection.

      • bookie1973

        Its base on the plan , internet speed , and the company you choose. I have U-verse but its cost a lot but I never have any data overage. After I watch my roku I just unplug and go back to broadcast tv. If you have a laptop you can plug the HDMI into the tv and watch some of the movie channel on roku. Most of them require you to register first to stream. Also some Kmart carry the boxes if you need to put on layaway.

        • susanthecouponer

          How do you get the sound on your TV when you have your HDMI hooked to your laptop. I don’t get sound on the TV, just the picture. Would love to know.

          • bookie1973

            you have to select HDMI in your tv menu

          • bookie1973

            you have to select HDMI in your tv menu

      • elje

        seriously what is internet time in this age and time? I know It existed when dial up was the connection. I havent heard it these days at all till like now. My cable provider doesnt have this internet time thing. Its just per month – i use it or over use it or dont use it. doesnt matter I pay the same.
        and I also have rabbit ear antenna to get some basic free over the air hd channels and others.

      • Angela Williams

        Debbie, you mean gigabytes! And yes, roku or google chromecast will use your gigbytes (GB) on your internet plan. So it would be best to have unlimited high speed internet, not a jetpack or other little black box for internet through a cell phone provider. Hope that helps.

    • Lynn

      A little off topic but you can see movies forFREE in the theaters! It’s the premier before it’s opened to the public. Just sign up at gofobo.com and type in your zip to search for a movie. Sometimes they will even email you the passes. I’ve been doing it for 3 years and go a couple times a month! Saved lots over the years! You have to get to theater about an hour before the movie starts because they pay for every seat so they want to make sure there’s enough people. Kids movies are shown on Saturday mornings sometimes! Happy movie watching!

    • Mommyof1

      Some power companies allow you to check your daily usage for the day prior. This has really helped me keep things in check.

    • blessedwith2

      What about watching football games live? I know this isn’t a necessity, but it is important in our family. Go Noles!

      • Cara Beth Wilson

        this is EXACTLY my concern. We don’t want to lose the ability to watch football OR basketball. If I could figure this out, I’d be sold!

        • suemac1

          Same for us – the only thing holding us to cable is sports. Go Gators!

          • Tracy

            Same for us, except my husband likes all the sports: football, basketball, racing, etc. Still searching for the answer!!!

      • Megan

        I’m from Charlotte, and 100% of Panthers games were televised locally through FOX, NBC, or CBS. I don’t have cable and I never missed a game! Not sure how it works with college games or basketball, though.

    • coupon_dude

      If your refrigerator or freezer is 10 or 20 years old, get a new one. It may sound counter-intuitive to spend that much money to save money, but technology has improved a LOT.

      I hung on to my 22 year old refrigerator, thinking I was saving money. I was wrong. When I finally had to get a new one, my electric bill literally dropped by 30%, and getting a new refrigerator was the only change that I had made. With savings that big, cost of the new refrigerator will be recouped in only 2 years.

      Don’t forget to check with your electric company to see if there is a rebate to have them recycle your old refrigerator. My electric company offers $50 AND they haul the old one away for free.

    • Tammy Corbin

      If you cut the cable cord – TIVO is a must for us. Works with antenna, just need internet to get the program guide. If you are looking into TIVO get the best box you can afford. 300 hours and 4 programs work well for me.

    • Pergocheesy

      Instead of paying a monthly fee for a home phone, we bought an Ooma box. You pay one time for the box and it runs off of your internet. This way we can still have a home phone. It paid for itself in under a year.

    • Lisa

      We put a timer on our hot water heater it goes off at 11 pm at night and comes back on in the morning 7am would of left off longer but have 2 grown boys sometimes they shower late
      Also we have internet I thought the modem hooked up to phone line if u cut off house phone won’t that mess up internet ?

      • susanthecouponer

        How do you put a timer on your hot water heater?

        • Susan

          You can buy them at Lowes and Home Depot.

        • tammie

          how long does it take for the water to heat up in the morning?

    • Kristi

      We have PlexTV and our internet (AOL) both through our local phone carrier which is NorthState Telephone, between those 2 services, we pay $112 per month, we basically watch ESPN, Disney and Fox and a few others, is this a deal?
      Our cellphone plan is through Verizon, me and my husband and daughter share this plan (all smartphones), we pay $120 per month for unlimited talk and text and currently have 2 gigibytes in which we all share, is there something better out there for this?

    • Ben

      We’ve been using Republic Wireless for the last 2 months and it’s been wonderful. After being with Verizon for 2 years we decided paying a subsidized monthly bill was like throwing away money. No-Contract cell service plans are cheaper b/c you aren’t paying for that free iPhone that really costs $500+. Yes they cost more upfront b/c you have to buy the phone but with Republic wireless, $299 gets you the American made Moto X and $25/month for 3G unlimited talk, text, and data. They also have 4g plans for $40/month. It sounds too good to be true and service would be terrible but coming from Verizon and living in the country I cannot tell the difference. They also advertise by word of mouth.

    • tori729

      We use Puretalk for our cell phone. It is prepaid and I have a couple apps on my phone that allow me to make calls for free from my home internet connection. We pay $15/month for two phones plus $30 every few months to reload the minutes because we use more than it comes with. The worst part is you have to pay for your phone but that allows me to not have to have a data plan and still have a smartphone.

    • Jen Beaver

      Wow! This is eye opening for me. Thank you Jenny! AND thank you to all of you who shared your cell/tv/internet advice in comments!!

    • Toni

      Can anyone recommend a small, reliable, quiet, economical model of a portable printer? I need something that I can take into a library so that I can print internet coupons. (You see, we live in a rural area three miles from the center of town but one mile away from cable access. AT&T does not have DSL out here, and Cox cannot provide internet because we’re too far from their nearest remote. Our only internet options cost about $10 per GB, which translates into our family not being able to afford to do what we need to do online. I hate to throw everyone else off the internet and just keep it mostly to myself, so after divvying up what we can afford, no one in the family gets near enough access for their personal agendas. I often go without being able to print available coupons. Dial-up internet in our experience is bad where we live. It has meant waiting up to 30 minutes for links clicked on to spool up.)

    • Josh

      I recently called my service providers to negotiate with them and to hopefully lower my bills.
      That was just a waste of time: I spent more than 1 hour on the phone, to only be told that I would not get any discounts.
      But then I read an article about a company called BillXperts.com that is specialized in saving people money on their bills by negotiatng with their service providers.
      So I sent them my bills and a week later they came back to me with over $45 of savings on my cell phone and TV bills.
      Would definitely recommend going to their website, http://www.billxperts.com

    • Canel

      Tips on Saving long term is to have the US Broadband America that was passed by Congress in 2009. America should be Wireless as we have the technology to do so. Think about this! Basically Free wireless internet [there is no cost for Internet as it is free], there is no cost for GPS as it is free, there is no cost for TV, Radio, police radar to name a few. If we got rid of the Tel-com’s that are promoting cellular each mobile phone owner would save around $50 per month X 300,000,000 users would stimulate the economy at first round of $15 Billion a month. How do we do this? Vote out anyone that has been in Congress more than 6 years. “Six Years and Out” and out for six years. In 2016 that would be 34 US Class III Senators and over 300 House of Representatives. If they can’t get re-elected PAC money does no good. They are suppose to be public servants but after Six years they become Politicians. http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00P08JC6K/ref=rdr_kindle_ext_tmb has a non-Partizan approach in how to become a Republic again.