The following is a contribution from Monica at Monica on Money. If you’re interested in contributing to Frugal Rules, please consult our guidelines and contact us.
Canceling your cable to save money can be a controversial topic. Some people “NEED” cable, some people love cable because it’s entertaining for themselves and their kids, and some people watch cable just because they grew up watching it. But others have no problem cancelling the cable to save more money, to pay down debt, to pay off credit cards, or to save for retirement. So, is cable really a “NEED” or just a “WANT?”
Certainly, there are several reasonable options instead of cable these days. There’s the very popular Netflix or Hulu for only $8 per month. There are also the smartphone Apps that allow you to watch TV shows if you have a subscription. There’s the Apple TV, which is a one-time cost of $99. RedBox is another inexpensive option at only $1.29 for a movie per night. These options are MUCH less expensive than a cable subscription and allow you to still watch TV shows or movies once in a while.
But, the bottom line is that if you need more money, cancelling your cable is a quick and easy way to save about $100 per month.
Think about this for a moment in terms of 5 years. In reality, many people with a cable subscription easily pay over $200 per month for prime channels like HBO or Showtime but we will stick with an average of $100 per month for this calculation.
With Cable: In just five years, a cable subscription could cost $6,000! Wow! I personally would rather have the $6,000 to pay off my mortgage or save more for retirement. If you have debt, $6000 would certainly help pay down your debt too. What could you do with $6,000 in extra money?
Without Cable: Instead of watching cable, you will be amazed at how much time you instantly have to achieve your goals, whether they are personal goals or financial goals.
- If you’re in school or college, you will have more time to study for exams and job search.
- If you have kids, you will have more time to spend quality time with them.
- If you’re single, you will have more time for friends and family.
Without Cable: Your productivity will also increase exponentially! You will become MUCH more productive. Bonus: You might even become more active and healthier too.
- You will have more time to work out daily instead of sitting on the couch.
- You will have more time to cook dinner at home.
- You will have more time to find new hobbies that you’ve always wanted to do, like learning to paint or play the guitar.
- You will have more time to join local social outdoor activities, like a running club.
Do you have cable? Would you consider cancelling your cable to save more money?
Editor’s note: I’ve purposely stayed away from talking about cancelling cable as I am a bad PF blogger and enjoy our cable. That said, that’s the beauty of personal finance, because it’s a personal choice. I do definitely agree with Monica though, if you’re needing to cut expenses or pay off debt then cutting the cord is a great way to free up more money each month.
The preceding was a guest blog from Monica who writes about Saving, Budgeting and Frugal Living on her personal finance blog, Monica On Money. She recently wrote an article about Saving $8400 By Not Having Cable For 7 years.
Photo courtesy of: Philip Stewart