Sense & Centsibility Blog

Money Saving Tip of the Week: How to Survive Without Cable

Whenever someone finds out that I don’t have cable, I often hear…”how can you live without cable”? On occasion I get a far more sympathetic response. For example, I may get an “oh, I’m sorry” usually accompanied by slight head tilt to add a sprinkle of pity. The truth is there are times when I really wish that I had it. I know this because when I stay with my brother (who is an avid TV watcher) I consume so much HGTV and DIY network that I see the same shows run for the 2nd time! I can’t get enough! However, the average monthly cable bill is $75 ($900/year) and I have plans for that money. Unfortunately, cable just isn’t part of those plans. So here are some tips for coping with a cable-deprived life.

Take "Supplements"

In order to stay strong you must supplement your network TV watching with internet. Most cable networks have websites that allow you to watch episodes of your favorite shows when you want to see them. The benefit of this is like Tivo, you watch it whenever you want. The only drawback to this is that you don’t often get to watch the most recent episode so you will still need to shush everyone at the office when they start talking the episode that was on last night.

Stay Mentally Sharp

Join a book club. I know that this sounds cheesy but I have to say, it changed my life. I am starting to read the list of books that I thought I had no time to read over the last few years and it’s a good reason to get out and socialize. In addition, the next time someone asks you if you caught last night’s episode of the show you have never heard of (because you don’t have cable!) you can say. No, I was at book club last night. They may think you are intellectual or boring but either way, you might avoid the pity head tilt!

Build a Strong Support System

When life gets rough, you really find out who your friends are. In trying times your friends will fall into two categories, those who invite you over for the game that is only on ESPN and those who don’t. There may be others who are living with the lack of cable in their lives and you need to support them too! I suggest holding a support group meeting at the local restaurant with ten TVs…you know they will have the game on there.

If you don’t want to jump in and make a permanent decision, sometimes cable companies have the option to temporarily cancel service, i.e. for 3 months. And summer is the perfect time to try this out. You too can live a happy and fulfilling life even if you don’t have cable. Plus, think about what you could do with the money you can save...

Want other tips and tricks to save money throughout the year? Call LSS at 888.577.2227 or GET STARTED ONLINE right now. It never hurts to get a second set of unbiased eyes on your finances. Take action today to improve your financial situation!

Author Ashley Hagelin is a Certified Financial Counselor with LSS Financial Counseling and specializes in Reverse Mortgage Counseling.