I had to make a call to our internet provider – our latest payment wasn’t showing up on the bill.
I knew this was going to waste a lot of time.
After dealing with the problem, I made a casual enquiry as to when our contract expired. I had received a very good offer from the competition and was considering switching. Funnily enough, our contract expired three days before.
So I asked the question:
Can you do me a better deal?
40 minutes later and I saved us $360 over the next 9 months or $40 a month less than what we are paying now and with the same service, download limit etc. After 9 months our contract amount reverts back to what it is now, with a 10% discount every month.
And I spent the 40 minutes on the exercise bike – exercise for the day done – $360 in the pocket! Not such a waste of time after all. Nor a bad way to multi-task your exercise time, although the lass on the other end of the line might have thought the heavy breathing was a bit creepy.
A 32% a year saving on just one expense isn’t half bad. Now imagine if you made this phone call for all of your providers and saved even just a small amount on your:
- Electricity / Gas
- Mobile phone
- Credit card
Just a small saving with each will add up to hundreds of dollars over the course of the year. That’s a few extra hundred I would rather hold onto.
Here’s another good example of why you should question your bills.
When we first bought our house, I nearly died when we got our rates notice. I thought it was way too expensive. Everyone (family and friends) I spoke to said the same thing:
Welcome to reality. Deal with it.
Instead of "dealing with it", I made a quick call to the local council and asked the same question:
What’s the story? Can you do me a better deal?
It turns out they had made a mistake on our rates notice. One call saved us $270 a year. What did I have to lose by making a quick call? Nothing. What did I have to gain? If I had just sucked it up like everyone told me, we would have been paying an extra $270 every year that we shouldn’t have been.
It just goes to show that it doesn’t hurt to ask.
Melissa Goodwin is a writer and the creator of Frugal and Thriving who has a passion for living frugally and encouraging people to thrive on any budget. The blog is nine years old and is almost like her eldest baby. Prior to being a blogger and mum (but not a mummy blogger), she worked as an accountant doing other people’s budgets, books and tax.