If you are looking to save on your monthly bills, there is a really easy option. You can actually negotiate your monthly bills. This has worked for a lot of people and all you have to do is make a phone call. It really is that easy. You will never know just how much you can save until you ask. It may not be hundreds of dollars but every little bit counts.
You are probably wondering which bills can you negotiate? Any kind of payment is up for negotiation. It really depends on how many other options you have. The gas and electric bill may be harder to get a lower rate on because you only have one or maybe two options for those. But it never hurts to ask. The other bills that are easier to negotiate are:
- realtor commission
- mortgage rates
- credit car rates and fees
- lawn service
- trash pickup
- insurance ( car, house, boat, motorcycle)
- life insurance
These are just some of the things that can be negotiated. I’m sure there are many others but these are the ones I can think of off the top of my head. Now how do you even start to negotiate for a better price?
This is the most important thing you can do. Call several companies in your area that offer the same service and get quotes and offers. Get them to go as low as you can and let them know that you are shopping around. Take notes on everything that will be included and the price. Then you can go to the company you really want to work with and let them know what others are offering. If they can’t match it, then you know where else you can go.
Know What Deal you Want
Some companies may be able to offer you a lower price, while others may be able to offer you extra features like, free HBO or a Sports Package. They may even offer free equipment like a satellite company. If you don’t care about the extras, don’t take them. Stand firm on wanting a lower price over the extras. Sometimes they won’t budge on price but you will at least have gotten something for free.
Be Kind and Have Patience
Remember the old saying ” You get more flies with honey”? This is true when you are trying to negotiate. Be kind and courteous to the customer service rep. They will be more willing to work with you. Also, make sure you are able to be patient. You will have to go through automated answering and then probably be transferred more then a few times. Just stay on the line and don’t give up.
Take Excellent Notes
When you are able to get a lower rate, make sure you take note of the confirmation number and the representative’s name. If the deal isn’t reflected on your next bill, you know all the details when you call to figure out what is going on. Also, write down the date and how long the deal is good for. If it is only good for a year, you know when to call back and negotiate again.
Should you Bundle?
Before you get wrapped up in the bundle offers, make sure it is worth it. You may think you are getting a better deal if you get phone, internet and cable all together but if you don’t really watch TV then it is a waste. Take the total for all 3 items and divide it by 3 to figure out the cost of each one separately. You can then use this as a guide to getting a lower deal elsewhere.
Pay in Full
A lot of times you can get a discount if you pay the year in full. This is a great way to save if you are able to do that. I’ve gotten an 8% discount on my exterminator bill just by doing this. If they don’t advertise this as an option, make sure to ask. Most trash pickup, exterminator, and insurance companies can take you up on the offer.
Don’t be Afraid to Cancel
If you are getting nowhere, don’t be afraid to say that you can cancel and go somewhere else. I know you can’t really do this with gas and water because you really need those. Bills like the cable and phone are easier to do this with. Honestly, we don’t even have a cable bill because we watch all of our favorite shows on Netflix and Amazon Prime. If you consider Netflix is $8 per month and Prime is $8.25 per month ($99 per year) we only pay $16.25 to see all of our shows whenever we want. That is a lot better than a $75 cable bill! I was also able to get my yearly fees removed from my credit card bill when I told them I would just go with a company that didn’t have any fees. It is much easier for a company to keep a customer then to get a new one so most are more willing to negotiate when they think they will loose your business.
These are some ways you can negotiate your monthly bills and hopefully save some money from your budget. If you are in financial stress and can’t afford your utility bills, make sure you call the company before you get a termination notice. They may be able to work with you to lower your bill or put you on some kind of special payment plan. Some are actually required to do that if you are elderly, have a baby, or some kind of medical condition; it depends on the state. They may even be able to put you in touch with an organization that can help that you may not have known about. If you have any other ways to negotiate your monthly bills please leave a comment below or you can check out my post on how to save on cooling costs.