I’ve been reexamining my spending habits in order to dig out from under a pile of debt and to ultimately be able to cash flow more travel. Back in February, I cut the DirecTV cord and went to strictly a free HD Antenna. I am now using a Roku 3, an Apple TV, and 2 Tivos and saving over $60 a month by getting rid of DirecTV.
I also started to cancel a bunch of credit cards to save on annual fees and went to a debit card at the beginning of the year in order to manage my finances better.
In March, I did a small low spend credit card churn to pick up a few miles without train wrecking my new financial plan.
Which brings me to a new way to save money – the home phone. I’ve had a landline for the past 12 years though the majority of my calling now happens via wireless. I had stripped the phone down to just a dial tone, yet it was still costing me $30 a month. I’m sure you’re asking – why don’t you just get rid of it and go straight wireless? Well, the answer is mostly due to the fact that my cell phone is through my work and we didn’t want my wife’s phone to be bombarded constantly with telemarketers and other solicitors plus the fact that we’ve had the same number for 12 years.
I was looking at two alternatives in order to finally rid myself of the landline – Ooma and Obi. I originally ordered an Obi because it was the cheaper of the two at $40 upfront however I ended up returning it because the setup was just too steep of a learning curve. I don’t have time to go through all kinds of code in order to hack it to dial 911 (though I do see now that they’ve partnered with someone to offer that service).
Last week, Costco.com had the Ooma Telo on sale for $99. I decided it was finally worth it to cut the cord. The Ooma comes with the telo, an ethernet cable, and an AC adapter. Activating the machine online was a breeze and in about 10 minutes, I had it all setup. The cost to port your exsiting landline number was $40, but that fee was waived for signing up for their premier service for a year so I went ahead and did that. There a lot of cool features, such as being able to forward calls to a cell phone in case of a power outage or internet outage, the ability to get voice mails emailed instantly in mp3 format, plus a whole range of other feature I’ve yet to try out.
After seven days, my home number was ported and so I’m all set to finally cancel my landline and save at least $20 a month in the process. I’ve been happy with the call quality and extra features so far. This is another step in cost saving measures to dig out the debt and then have the ability to cash flow travel in the future.
What cost saving techniques have you implemented recently?