Some tasks to save money take a lot of time and effort, and as such, they end up on your to-do list for a very long time. Well, here a some of the easiest things you can do to save money, and all it takes is a short phone call. And when I say short, I mean usually 15 minutes or less. In fact, some of these can take less than 5 minutes online.
Call Your Credit Card
If you are carrying a balance on your credit card, just call and see if they will lower your interest rate. 9 times out of 10, they will offer you a discounted rate for a period of time. A quick and easy savings. If, for some reason, they won’t lower your rate, look at getting another card. Spend 5 minutes browsing a site such as NerdWallet, find a card with 0% APR balance transfers, and spend the last 10 minutes filling out the application. In 15 minutes, you could be on your way to savings.
Check out our guide to the best credit cards for students.
Save Money at your Insurance Company
Another quick and easy phone call is to your car insurance company. See what the current rates are, and if you qualify to have yours reduced. This can add up if it has been years since you looked at your policy. Also, have any of your circumstances changed? Do you garage your car now, or did you get an alarm. If you tell the agent, you will usually qualify for a discount. Many insurance companies don’t readily offer their list of discounts, so you need to make sure you ask. Finally, do you have homeowners insurance or renters insurance? If you bundle with the same insurance company, you usually qualify for a multi-policy discount, which can save you even more!
Did you know that we got our renters insurance for free in college because we had a combo discount with our auto insurance. See if you can get a similar deal here.
Call Your Phone or Cable Company
Another easy savings can be calling your phone or cable company and asking for a lower rate or discount. With all of the competition in these markets, many providers are concerned about losing customers and will offer incentives to stay. Be careful though, especially with you cable company. Many companies have a strict list of discounts available to customers, and the clerks have incentives to offer cheap discounts before the big ones. Read about how we found the best cell phone plans.
Just keep asking, don’t settle for free products, and see where you end up. You can also threaten to cancel cable, as it may show how serious you are. Also, many only last for a short time, such as 6 months, so make sure you stay on top of when you discounts end. With this quick call, you can be saving a bundle!
At the end of the day, maybe it’s a smarter option to cut your cable and save money without it!
Finally, if you are a homeowner, you should call you county assessor and see if your property taxes can be lowered. With many home values falling across the country, it is highly likely that your home has lost some value. Even if it is only $10,000, if your property taxes are 1%, that would save you $100! Many cities and counties have very streamlined processes for handling property tax appeals, so call you local office and find out. A quick phone call could save you thousands!
Read our full guide on how to save money on your property taxes.
Readers, what other money-saving phone calls have you used or heard of? Let’s share the deals!
Robert Farrington is America’s Millennial Money Expert® and America’s Student Loan Debt Expert™, and the founder of The College Investor, a personal finance site dedicated to helping millennials escape student loan debt to start investing and building wealth for the future. You can learn more about him here.
He regularly writes about investing, student loan debt, and general personal finance topics geared towards anyone wanting to earn more, get out of debt, and start building wealth for the future.
He has been quoted in major publications including the New York Times, Washington Post, Fox, ABC, NBC, and more. He is also a regular contributor to Forbes.