Yesterday I went down an unexpected road, but I’m so glad I did. You should consider doing it too, as it won’t take you long but will probably save you a lot of money.
Oldest has to be added to my auto-insurance policy. I called my current carrier, answered the questions, and found out that adding him would more than double my premium! I expected some increase because 1. additional person, 2. that demographic is one of the worst from an insurance perspective. So the rate increase was expected, but I didn’t expect double.
Naturally, I was motivated to shop around.
Long story short, after about an hour on websites and telephone, I now have my auto AND homeowners insurance with a different company (both the old and new are reputable, national companies). Both new policies have increased coverages. My homeowners premium went down almost $100/year. My auto premium went up only about $250/year, which IMHO is quite reasonable.
Drastic savings, better coverages, and only took about 1-2 hours of my time.
That’s not atypical. Companies are changing pricing and service plans all the time. We just get in the habit of paying the bill, and who knows how much money we’re throwing away. About a year ago my cable modem got fried in a thunderstorm, and when I went down to the service office to get a replacement, the lady there switched me to a service plan that gave me the exact same Internet service plus basic cable for less than the price of just the Internet service. Granted I still don’t use the cable TV part, but I’ll take the lower price (saved me about $120/year).
Next time you’re doing bills, before you pay the bill get on the phone with their customer service. See what can be done with your rate. It’s possible nothing can be done (not sure of any electric/water/gas companies that do this), but if there is competition (cable/satellite TV, phone, Internet, etc.), see if there are better rate plans. Sometimes their “customer retention” people will do things like drop your rates for 6 months — better to get less of your money than none of your money.
All sorts of things, and for just a little bit of time on the phone.