Day 29 of the January Money Diet – Research Major Expenses

Homework assignment #29: Today’s challenge is to explore alternatives to your major expenses and make sure you’re getting the best deal in those big expenses you pay for over and over, year after year.

In the next week, research your costs or get new competitive quotes on life, homeowner’s, health, disability and auto insurance, telephone service, internet, cable, trash pick up, etc.

Call your phone or cable providers and ask about bundling discounts. If your employer offers several health insurance plans, take 30 minutes to review the policies and see if you’re getting the best deal. I pay for my own health insurance, and I use eHealthInsurance to easily compare plans and rates each year. If you’ve had the same auto and homeowners’ insurance policies for many years, you might find a better deal by using an insurance broker who represents many different companies. Maybe your cable company offers a better deal on a land line, or vice versa. Sometimes companies will match the rates of their competitors if you ask.

Think about it:  if you can reduce even one major expense by doing this exercise, you’ll have more money to invest or pay down debt. Check out the latest deals and see if you can save some money on recurring expenses, and you’ll be way ahead in the year to come.

P.S. In case you’ve just joined us, the January Money Diet is a challenge to take a 31-day break from nonessential spending. You can learn more about the money diet here — and jump right in!

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Win a Deluxe Happy Simple Living Gift Basket

In honor of the January Money Diet, I’ll be giving away a gift basket chock-full of home and garden goodies plus several books at the end of the month. On January 31, 2013, I’ll draw one random name from everyone who commented during the month and that lucky person will win the gift basket. I hope you’ll stop by often this month and share your own ideas, thoughts and experiences about taking a 31-day break from nonessential spending.

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About Eliza Cross

Eliza Cross is a full-time writer and the author of a dozen books about food and home design. She has been blogging about simplicity and sustainable living since 2006.

10 comments to Day 29 of the January Money Diet – Research Major Expenses

  • Deborah Gore

    I am planning on checking on our house, life and health insurance.

  • Carolyn

    Ah, yes – lstyear our homeowners/auto insurance had gone up a few thousand $ over a few years (I know – should’ve checked before), so we checked, looked around and saved a few thousand with another company. (No, we’ve had no claims w/company A!) Hope company B works well – sure is cheaper. NEwspaper renewal -would have dropped but kept on phone till a reasonable rate was offered. Phone/internet? I whined since monthly bills kept rising – nice guy offered a way better price (shoulda got it in writing); this month’s bill was higher than he’d promised, BUT definitely lower than it had been! Win a few/lose a few!

    • You made several good points with your comment, Carolyn – sometimes just calling and asking will get a reduction in fees. I’ve had this experience with the phone company. And yes, getting the deal in writing via e-mail or using online chat is always a wise idea! 🙂

  • aurora mattison

    anytime i can bundle and save i take advantage of with a few expections. thanks for the advice especially in today’s economy.

  • ElainieMay

    We compare health and life insurance costs each year. There is such a disparity. We have saved so much by doing this.

  • Jane

    Happy I found this website! We are doing a major budget overhaul this month in preparation for some big life changes coming up.

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