Is Your Cost of Living Higher than it Should Be?

Cost of Living

By Guest Blogger, Liz Nelson

Many of us live beyond our means whether by accident or by choice. If you’re not paying attention to the amenities around you, it’s easy to get wrapped up in adding services and features to your way of life. Have you ever stopped and tallied up how much you spend per year for each of the creature comforts you enjoy? Have you asked yourself what your cost of living is and what it should be? Some of these can be quite expensive when you add them up. Some common household features include: Phone Service

We are an interconnected world. As more than 90 billion smartphones are in the pockets of the people of the United States, various companies try to out-maneuver each other by providing the best deal. Are you sure you are getting the best deal for your money? Many land-line services are far cheaper than using a cell phone that could die during an important call or it receives poor reception in your home. Some people have gone so far as to get rid of various phone services all-together and invest in Voice-Over-IP devices such as Magic Jack. If you have a strong Internet connection, it’s hard to beat $30 per year for telephone service.

Television Services

If you don’t put much stock into watching various channels, is it worth having so many? Many of the most popular shows can be found on the Internet today. If you don’t utilize the TV that often, it may be a bill you really don’t need to add to the pile. Various cable and dish companies have a variety of packages that could greatly reduce your monthly bills for entertainment. If some of your favorite shows are not available online, choose these packages.

Internet Services

Aside from bragging rights, are you actually using your Internet to its full potential? Or is the extra speed sitting there wasting your money every month? Of course using higher speed Internet can help reduce your television bills if you receive all of your entertainment from online resources. However, simple browsing and Facebook updates don’t require an expensive connection. Look at your priorities and find the best deal for your absolute needs.

Getting the Bundles

Many companies will bundle services together in order to make them vastly cheaper than paying for all three of the above separately. Many companies are getting into bundling features such as Verizon with its phone and Internet router. This allows you to plug in a land-line telephone while using 4G LTE networking for your browsing needs. This isn’t including any of the other services and features offered by cable or satellite companies. Instead of settling on the first name in the phone directory, it is usually best to look around and find the best deals you can for you needs. It’s all about considering your priorities and not what sounds “cool.”

Always keep your options open and keep a look out for the better deals. If at all possible, try to avoid contracts that lock you into a service fee that could wind up being exceptionally high. You may be impressed with the amount of services and bundles that are not generally advertised if you ask the provider. In some cases, you may find the deal of a lifetime simply by asking them directly. Before buying into a new service or agreement, ask yourself, “Is this necessary for me to have?”

This is a guest post by Liz Nelson from She is a freelance writer and blogger from Houston. Questions and comments can be sent to: