Are you still paying for cable or satellite TV? C’mon man! Where’s your sense of adventure? What are you waiting for? It’s time to ditch the crusty old dude and party with the good looking Chad on the dancefloor! Save some serious skrilla and cut the cord to cable today!
We cut the cord several years ago and haven’t looked back. Cutting the cord to cable was one of the first steps we made to get our financial house in order. We used that extra $100 a month as a launching point to saving more and spending on the things we really want…like travel. Plus, not mindlessly watching so much TV gave us a whole lotta extra time – time we used to start this blog and change our life!
And then, there’s the issue of service. OH. MY. GOD. I would rather watch every episode of Caillou than deal with the total and complete incompetence of cable providers. Been there, done that.
It’s Time to Cut the Cord
Apparently, we aren’t the only people who feel this way. According to NBC News, “The nation’s top nine cable companies lost about 145,000 video subscribers in the third quarter of 2015 — compared to a loss of about 440,000 subscribers in the same quarter of 2014, and a loss of nearly 600,000 subscribers in 3Q 2013.”
Ouch. That’s got to hurt. No wonder most cable companies jack prices up each year and outsource their call centers to Timbuktu.
If you’re someone who’s still holding on to their outdated cable service, seriously dude, it’s time to let go. Cutting the cord to cable and satellite could save you upwards of $800 or more per year. With so many different options these days, you won’t even be sacrificing on quality or content.
Benefits of Cutting the Cord
Honestly, cutting the cord to cable TV opened up a whole new world of possibilities for us. Some of the benefits are obvious, like saving money. Others, not so much. Here are a few:
- Save money – Why pay $100/month for 3 channels you watch and 197 you don’t? Cut the cord and only pay for the channels you use.
- More time – Watching less TV gives you more time to pursue other things…productive things, like starting a blog or another side hustle.
- More freedom – No more dealing with ridiculous cable or satellite contracts.
- No dish on your house – No more ugly dish on your roof.
- Watch what you want – Instead of mindless channel surfing, cord cutters actually get a better TV experience. Usually, you have to make a conscious decision about what you want to watch – meaning you tune into the shows you really want to see.
- No more crappy service – No more sitting on hold for hours and getting transferred 37 times before talking to somebody who can’t help you.
- Save money – Did I mention yet that it’s waaaaay cheaper?
Equipment for Cord Cutters
Unless you want to go cold turkey, cutting the cord to cable means that you’ll need a few small pieces of equipment to get your entertainment fix. However, these are generally one-time costs that can be recouped within a couple of months of going cable-free.
- Roku – This bad boy is our most important TV viewing device. It hooks up to your WiFi and allows you to stream about 100 different “channels” – including Netflix, Hulu, Sling, Amazon and more. There are a few different versions that will run you from about $50-$100. We go with the Roku 2 on our TV sets…and it rocks our socks off!
- Antenna – If you want access to your local TV channels, find yourself a decent antenna. Not only can you watch those channels for free, you can also see them in HD. We’ve used this antenna for years, and it’s pretty rad. Or try this one, which one of our friends just bought.
- DVD Player – You’ve almost certainly got one of these already, but if you don’t, go get one. You can buy a quality DVD Player for under $40 these days. Use it to watch the movies you have, or hit the Redbox once a week for family movie night!
- DVR Recorder – You don’t need a Tivo subscription or a cable box to record programs. This DVR recorder does that for you with no added expenses.
TV Options for Cord Cutters
When we first cut the cord to cable, our TV viewing options were limited. Now, there are tons of streaming services available. Not only that, some of these services are actually putting out their own awesome content. Our personal favorites are Netflix and Hulu Plus.
Netflix is the perfect fit for somebody who likes to binge watch their favorite shows – like me. (I think I blew through Breaking Bad in about 3 weeks.) Plus, if you’re into great original series and documentaries, Netflix is your ticket. With shows like Orange is the New Black, House of Cards, and Making a Murderer, Netflix is one of the top producers of quality content in the entertainment industry! The rest of their selection is pretty great too. If you have kids, there’s a ridiculous amount of programming available. The pricing is also pretty affordable at $7.99 per month for the Basic package, $9.99 for Standard, and $11.99 per month for premium. And, if you’re a commitment-phobe, you can cancel at any time.
If Mama can’t live without staying current on her stories, Hulu Plus is definitely for you. Several shows from ABC, NBC, and Fox are available for replay the day after they air. This totally rules, especially if you prefer not to watch shows as they air or if you missed your favorite show while you were out. Additionally, they’ve got some of our favorite guilty pleasures available for viewing – like MTV’s The Real World and The Challenge, all of the Real Housewives series, and Keeping Up with the Kardashians. We also use Hulu Plus to watch a lot of Rick Steves’ Europe. They’ve also got a pretty large selection of movies available, although we generally use Netflix or Amazon for that. However, I am interested to see some of their new original content, like 11.22.63, coming out soon!
Other Available Options
Even if you don’t have a Roku, there are a lot of other ways to get your TV fix. Here’s a pretty good list of some alternative TV options.
- Hulu Plus
- Amazon Instant Video
- Amazon Prime Video
- RedBox Instant
- Project Free TV
- Google Chromecast
- The Apple TVbox
- com (for sports streaming)
- Yahoo Screen
- Network websites
See? All that and no cable contract needed! For the tightwads out there, some of those services on the list are even 100% free to use.
Just Cut It
Right now, minimalism and frugality are in. Jump in, the water is warm. It’s time to order your shows a la carte and not pay for the whole buffet. Join us in the cord cutting revolution! We’ll never go back…and we don’t think you will either.
Do you still pay for cable or satellite service? How do you get your mindless TV fix?