Money Saving Ideas for 2018
There are so many money saving ideas floating around that it is sometimes overwhelming. The key to saving money is to take it 1 step at a time. You need to learn to make small changes. If you know that you aren’t ready to give up that extra cup of Starbucks or cut the cable then don’t do it. The last thing you need is to get turned off which could have an adverse effect on many areas of your life. However, if you are ready to start saving money then I am going to share with you 52 money saving ideas you can start implementing in your life for 2018 and I am going to do it one week at a time.
Week #3 – Ooma
Some money saving ideas go hand and hand. Last week we cut the cable but most people have a triple play package from their Internet/cable provider. If you have a landline you might be wondering how to get around cutting the cable without losing your telephone service.
Most telephone services cost $20 a month which is quite high considering everyone and their mother has a cellphone and barely uses their landline.
I have a landline because I have kids. If I go out I want to make sure I have multiple ways to contact them in case the babysitter is texting or watching Youtube.
Anyway, the solution is Ooma..
What is Ooma?
Ooma is a company that offers voice-over-IP (VOIP) calling using an Internet connection to support a range of communications solutions for your home.
Ooma provides free home phone service once you purchase our device for a one-time fee. Plug your high-speed Internet and existing home phone into Ooma and call anywhere in the U.S. for free. You pay only applicable taxes and fees. You’ll enjoy clear, landline quality voice and included features like caller-ID, call-waiting and voicemail.
So that is Ooma in a nutshell. The savings is great and the process was very simple to set up.
Here is what I did.
If you have a telephone number already established on another provider there is a fee to move that number over to Ooma but the savings is totally justifiable. Personally, I didn’t care so I switched my number and avoided the fee which was a blessing in disguise.
I used to get a lot of telemarketer calls on my other number but once I switched to Ooma I never got another call again. So, that was a hidden gem for me once I realized my phone wasn’t ringing for no reason and it was all because I made the switch.
The best part is Ooma only costs $5.99 a month and there are no fees or telephone wires and I can call anytime anywhere with a clear reception.
I love Ooma!
Week #2 – Cut the Cable
Cutting the cable is one of those money saving ideas that you have heard many many times before but, to this day, I have friends that tell me they can’t live without their favorite TV shows. That means it still needs to be said.
I have a question. How did you make out financially in 2017?
Let me give you some facts on those cable companies that host those shows you can’t live without:
- Time Warner’s market cap is $72.88 Billion
- Comcast’s market cap is $191.81 Billion
- Verizon’s market cap is $214 Billion
And guess what? Each one of those cable companies is working night and day to get you to continue to say “I can’t live without my show“.
Ok so you still can’t live without your favorite TV shows. That is fine because you don’t have to.
Let me offer a great alternative for cable so you can save money and still watch your favorite TV shows.
SlingTV is a great alternative to cable that offers live TV streaming that gives you the choice, customization and control you deserve. Set up is super easy and it only costs $25 a month and not a penny more. There is no cable person, no cable box and no extra (hidden) fees. And if you really love TV you can add packages to it for an additional cost.
For example during the baseball playoffs I added a comprehensive sport’s package (that included much more than baseball) for $10 and then canceled it once the series was over. Then when my wife’s cousin came to visit from Colombia I added a Spanish TV package that had every show you could imagine en español.
Sling TV even offers a DVR to record your favorite TV shows for an additional $5 a month.
Anyway, I cut my triple play package at cable and kept my high speed internet for streaming and stock trading. Then I joined Sling TV in November of 2016. 14 months later I have saved $88 a month or $1232.00.
Sling TV is not the only live streaming service in case you were wondering.
Check out Direct TV and Youtube Live as those are just as good.
Week #1 – The Expense Ratio
This is one of the money saving ideas that will benefit you for the rest of your life and it is very easy to do. If you have a company saving’s plan like a 401k, IRA or any amount of money invested in funds or ETFs then check the expense ratio now.
The expense ratio is the annual fee that all funds or ETFs charge their shareholders. That means that if you have $100,000.00 invested in a fund or ETF and you are paying .75% annually you will pay $650 more in 1 year than someone who has an expense ratio of .10%.
In 10 years that savings is $10,592.84. In 30 years that number jumps to $94,159.26.
There are many factors related to investing that you might not be comfortable facing. If that is the case then this book changed my life and helped me to understand the true value of an invested dollar. Hopefully it can help you too.
In addition to that you can speak to your financial advisor at work or your brokerage firm and see if you can find a fund or ETF similar to Vanguard’s low fee index fund like VTSAX.
Check out this article I wrote in 2017 on the expense ratio between Vanguard VTSAX and Fidelity FSTVX.
Some of the links in this post are from my sponsors. I thought you should know because honesty is better then sugarcoated bullsh*t.