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This is a money saving tip for the 50/50 Challenge.
Today's tip should take more than 20 minutes to do. If you can just get out your bills and bank statements for the last month and review them, you may be able to save yourself a bit of money or plug a money leak. I want to share two stories showing why it's important.
Cable Bill- Scary Jump In Price
This happened to me last year and it still shocks me how off the customer service representative was. Basically we moved from our apartment to our town-home and I was looking for a deal through our cable company. At the time we were paying around $50/month, using Time Warner cable and internet and Skype as our land line. As we called to transfer service to the new place, the customer service representative helpfully mentioned that for a mere $10/month more, we can substantially upgrade our cable.
The bill wasn’t $60-$70 as I expected, it was $140.23. $140. For just cable and internet. Ridiculous. Fortunately we got everything fixed; it was just annoying to have this mix-up in the first place.
When you check your bills, make sure you what you're being charged for is the service you receive.
Hidden Fees on My Checking Account
Another story about reviewing statements involves my business checking account for a while ago. I noticed a $5/month charge to my account a while back that I didn't remember signing up for. It turns out that it was a fee for downloading account information for Quicken. First off, I was a bit annoyed that it was a fee just to download the information. Plus not being told about it when I grabbed the file was a bit shady. I decided that the ‘service' was not worth it to me.
A simple email to customer service was able to adjust this to my account. It's not huge amount saved, but it comes out to $60/year for about 10 minutes of effort, not bad.
Checking Bills and Bank Statements
I don't think that banks and cable companies are out to get customers (ok, maybe a little 😛 ) but I do know that nobody cares about our money like we do. It's up to us to keep an eye out. Have you've been able to save money by checking out your bills for extra charges? Have you had fees removed from your checking account?
Photo Credit: Michael David Pedersen