How to reduced your bill and get extra money in your pocket – Part 1

In these days of ultra-competition, service providers are looking for every opportunity to strive for customer retention. Do you know you can leverage this climate to negotiate your bills to reduce your payments by switching service providers’?
This article highlights the process of how you can reduce your bills and get extra cash in your pocket by shopping around – every so often – to ensure you’re on the best rates.

Switching your service provider

To start with, every one of us has to pay one bill or the other each month, e.g. broadband, water, electricity, phone, TV/cable, etc to pay, but there are means of ensuring you’re not paying more than you have to pay. I’ll tell you my story on how I reduced my monthly outgoings by close to 25% by using to compare different service providers ( is a free, impartial online comparison and switching service. uSwitch helps people to compare prices on a wide range of products and services from gas and electricity and broadband to car insurance and mobile phones).

I compared my TV/cable package costs with what’s available out there from the other TV service providers; after which I made a phone call to my existing cable service provider to find out if they could do a deal for me – or to see if they had any ongoing promotions which could have brought my monthly subscription fees down. The customer service officer promptly replied “no”, at which point I referred him to the uSwitch website to another provider that would give me more features than what they were providing for me – at a reduced price. I requested my existing provider should price-match the alternative provider to retain my business, else I was prepared to switch to the alternative provider on

After haggling for a while, during which the customer service officer offered an 8% reduction, followed by 10% off my existing deal; at which point we reached an agreement on a matched price. Furthermore, we also noticed that I had been paying for the HD version of the cable package, that I didn’t even need or use. When I asked the gentleman to remove the HD version of the service the price came down massively to about 25% less than my existing monthly subscription, and I was given another six month half price package as a further incentive to remain with the company.

Based on this my story, I have summarized the steps on how to reduce your bills and get extra money in your pocket, below:

Research the competitors

Researching your provider’s competitors is very important step, I cannot place enough emphasis on this as you have to know and compare your current service provider features.

There are many comparison websites you can use to research the competitors, I uses uSwitch. The site will provide you with all the information about the packages on offer from your providers’ competitors. After reading about the competitors packages, if you don’t understand their product offerings, you can call them for clarification. If you are looking to switch your TV/cable package, these are some of the questions you might want to ask:

  • Does your package comes with Sky Sports and Sky Movies?
  • How many months’ contracts do I need to be committed to?
  • How many freeview channels come with the package?
  • Does your HD service cost more?
  • If I want to switch from my current service provider can you pay my termination fees?

Apart from asking the providers these question you will need to see what people that have been with them are saying about their customer support and how good their services are? As I said earlier this first step is very important as there is no point in reducing the cost of service but getting poor support and, subsequently being unable to use the services you’ve bought.

Determine if it worth switching or call for negotiation

Determine if it’s worth switching, or worth your while calling your existing provider to negotiate

Call the service provider

Call your existing service provider to see if there are any deals or promotions that they can offer you, if not tell them that you got an appealing offer from one of their competitors’ (ensure that you mention the name of the competitor) and you want them to match the offer otherwise you are thinking of cancelling your service with them to go with their competitor. This will open up the negotiation channel. You will have to use your negotiating skills at this point.

Note: If you can’t negotiate successfully with the existing provider, then tell the customer service personnel that you will call back as you want to think about your options. If they tell you that you are locked into their contract for X months, you may still be able to switch if, from your original discussions with a potential new provider, they’ve already confirmed they will pay your termination fees.

I hope this strategy will work for you as it works for me.

I’ll continue in my next post, so be on the lookout!

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IT Consultant/Architect at Alpha Consulting Holdings Limited
I am an IT Consultant/Architect, freelance writer and blogger.
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