Cell phone usage makes up a large portion of most people budget. It does not start out that way but over the years, our cell phone bills keep going up. Our devices these days are more complicated and costly and they use much more data. This hunger for data resources costs us more and more each month but luckily, there are ways to cut back on our cell costs. Here are the easiest and most effective ways.
Buy A Cheaper Device
One of the biggest costs of having a cell phone is the phone itself. Years ago, you could get a very capable phone for several hundred dollars. Now, a top of the line one is going to cost well over a thousand dollars.
You need a cell phone loan these days just to be able to afford it and in fact, that is what most people get. They get a new phone through their provider and then get charged 40 to 50 dollars a month over the course of the contract to pay for the phone. That is a 500 to 600 dollar additional phone cost a year. Money that could be better spent elsewhere.
The best way to cut down on this cost is to simply buy a cheaper device and buy it yourself. If you like cutting edge, just buy one model behind the latest and greatest phone. It will have almost all of the same features but you can pick up a refurbished phone for $300 when the top of the line model cost over 3 times that.
Performance wise, you will still get a performer. That refurbished phone was once a top of the line model and will be just as capable as a new model. You just might not get the latest camera or trendy feature.
Keep Your Phone Longer
Another way to save money on the phone itself is to simply keep it longer. A high end device has more than enough memory and processor power to last well beyond the 1 to 2 year service time that most people tend to give them.
In fact, if you take care of your phone, there is no reason that it can not last twice that time. For a good device, 4 years should not be a problem.
The biggest issue for most people with an older phone revolves around the battery. If the phone is still working, this should not be a reason to replace it. Many phones come with easily replaceable batteries. Others can be replaced by the manufacturer for a reasonable rate and a new battery could help that old phone perform like new.
Another issue with an older phone is app bloat. Over the years, you have probably downloaded a ton of apps and deleted few of them. Get rid of apps that you do not use or even do a hard reset on your phone and take it back to factory settings.
Switch To A Cheaper Plan
There is a lot of competition in the cell phone industry. The big players are constantly trying to get people to switch other character. If you want to stick with the major players, you can probably save a few bucks a month by going to a different one. If you are under contract, they may even pay your cancellation fee.
An even better way to save money is to move to a pre-paid plan. These plans understandable have a stigma about them. It used to be that if you had bad credit or owed money to a major carrier that you had to use one of these services. Not the case anymore.
The biggest difference between a regular carrier and a pre-paid one is that you pay your bill at the beginning of the month instead of the end. Besides that, they use the same towers and the service is nearly identical. Many of these pre-paid companies are even owned by the major carriers.
True, you will no longer get a subsidized phone but the major carriers do not do you many favors in that regard anymore. They have gotten away from giving you huge discounts on phones but still kept their monthly rates high.
Cut Back On Service
Take a minute to look closely at your service plan and see where cuts can be made.
The biggest mistake people make that causes them to waste money on their bill is buying too much service. Unlimited internet, for example, is great buy if you are only using 4 gigs a month, you are wasting money.
Take a close look at your data usage over the last several months and then pick a plan that covers you with just a little buffer. No use paying for things that you do not need.
There are a lot of ways to save money on a cell phone as long as you are willing to make a few sacrifices.
As long as you do not have the latest and greatest, you can still get a great phone and have great service all the while saving a lot of money.
If your ultimate goal is financial stability and building wealth, cutting back on your cell phone and cell phone plan is a no brainer.