The monthly bills are piling up. You’re afraid that they’re getting out of control. You want to trim them down, but you’re not sure how to do that.
Don’t worry. Read these 10 strategies for trimming your monthly bills:
1. Cancel Unnecessary Subscriptions
You’ve signed up for dozens of subscription services over the years. It’s likely that you don’t use every single one of them as much as you’d like to. Maybe you have a subscription to an online magazine that you never seem to read or a gym membership that you haven’t used in months.
When it comes to these subscriptions, you need to stop telling yourself that you’ll eventually get around to using them. That’s probably not true. So, stop wasting your money on these monthly payments and cancel the subscriptions as soon as possible.
2. Drop the Premium Plan
Some subscription services will have tiered plans for customers. The top tier (or the premium tier) offers the most perks in exchange for a higher cost. If you’d like to save on your monthly bills, you should move your subscription services to a lower tier.
So, say that you have a premium plan with Netflix. This is $19.99 per month. You can swap that for the Standard plan, which is $15.49 per month. Or, if you want to save even more, you can choose the Standard with Ads plan — this only costs $6.99 per month. That could save you $150 in a year.
3. Cut the Cable
If most of your entertainment is coming from online streaming services, then you should make the difficult choice of cutting cable. Dropping this service should really reduce your monthly entertainment spending.
4. Negotiate with Your Providers
Do you have a free weekend? Then, you should call up some of your providers to negotiate your monthly rates. You can do this with your internet, phone and home security providers. Call the main companies and ask to talk to a customer representative. Let them know that you have been a loyal customer and you are unhappy with the size of your bills. You’d like to reduce your rates.
They may offer you a lower rate so that they can stop you from running off to their competitors.
5. Shop for New Providers
If negotiating with your providers doesn’t yield the results that you want, then you may want to comparison shop to see whether there are some better deals out there. Many companies will have tempting offers for new customers in order to snag them away from competitors. Take advantage of this.
6. Lower Your Interest Rate
Credit cards have famously high interest rates. These high interest rates can impact your outstanding account balances and make your monthly billing cycles harder to contend with. So, if you’d like to lower your monthly bills, you should consider calling up your credit card issuers and asking them to reduce your interest rates. If you have been a loyal customer and you have been consistent with credit card payments in the past, it’s possible that your issuer will drop your rate.
7. Use Less Credit
Speaking of credit — you should do your best to reduce your credit use. Remember that credit is borrowed. It needs to be repaid with interest. It will cost you more to use your credit card than to use the earnings sitting in your checking account. So, try to use your debit card to cover expenses as best as you can.
8. Use a Balance Transfer Card
If your credit card’s balance is far too high and you’re struggling with its billing cycle, you should consider getting a balance transfer card as a solution. You could move your high credit card balance onto the balance transfer card, which will have a 0% interest rate for an introductory period (typically a year). It will give you a brief period of time to whittle down your balance without having to worry about compounding interest.
9. Cancel Mortgage Insurance
Do you pay for private mortgage insurance (PMI)? Plenty of homeowners have to sign up for this insurance plan in order to mitigate any risk of default for the lenders.
The good news is that you don’t have to pay for this insurance forever. If your home equity has reached 20% (essentially, your mortgage balance is at 80%), you do not have to commit to this payment plan anymore. You can cancel the plan.
In some cases, the plan will automatically cancel when your mortgage or home equity reaches a certain threshold. You don’t want to assume this automated cancelation. Check yours to make sure that you don’t have to pay more than necessary!
10.Boost Your Insurance Deductible
Another simple change that you can make to lower your monthly bills is to contact your car insurance provider and ask to increase your deductible. The higher your deductible is, the lower your insurance premiums are. So, you will spend less on your monthly bills. According to Forbes Advisor, you can save between 7-28% per year on car insurance by increasing your deductible.
The Risk of Higher Deductibles
Of course, increasing your deductible comes with a risk. If you ever file a claim with your car insurance company, you will have to pay this higher amount out of pocket. So, you should only consider this change if you have an emergency fund sitting in a savings account.
What if you don’t have enough savings to cover a deductible? If you ever find yourself in a tricky situation where you don’t have enough savings to cover an emergency expense, you may want to borrow funds through a personal loan. You don’t have to search far for personal loans — you can find options near you that can help you get through this situation. As long as you meet all of the eligibility requirements, you can submit your application online.
Ideally, you should have an emergency fund filled with enough savings to cover a surprise cost, like an insurance deductible. Borrowing funds through a personal loan will just give you another bill to pay.
Your monthly bills don’t have to be this high. You have the power to lower them. Follow these tips and watch your rates drop and the savings pile up.