Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Publix Matchups

Today starts Italian Days at Publix.  For full sale details and coupon matchups, be sure to check out Passionate Penny Pincher!

Huntsville Readers - Enter to Win 4 Tickets to the Circus

Go Magazine is giving away 15 Family 4pks of tickets to the circus, coming to town March 2-6!

All you have to do to enter is send an email to:
Put "clown" in the subject line.

We Just Saved 20% On Our Car Insurance

And, no we didn't just switch to Geico.  I did however get an offer in the mail from my credit union regarding Traveller's insurance and a group rate that they were offering members.  Since we are in Money Saving Mode I figured I should at least call and see what they could do.

We hadn't really called around on our insurance in a few years, mainly because most insurance companies want to base your insurance price on your credit score.  It's not that we have bad credit, it's just that we don't have any open accounts besides our mortgage and since your credit score is basically an "I love debt" score based on how many credit accounts you have open and are paying on regularly, the quotes we get tend to be a bit high.

I really didn't figure that Traveller's would beat our current quote since it was already pretty decent from all I'd seen.  However, he ran the numbers and gave me a quote of about $200 less every 6 months than what we were currently paying.  Add to that that I've kinda felt like our current insurance company was a "discount" provider in that they provide very little service with their insurance.  Yes, when we've had claims they've been easy to deal with but I like to know I'm dealing with something a little more than a major call center in India when I have an issue.

I also had them give us a quote for our HomeOwners and he ended up quoting me better coverage than we currently have for about $20 a year more than we currently pay.  Since the two quotes were tied together (with discounts for having both at the same company) we figured it was well worth paying $20/year more on HomeOwners to save almost $400/year on car insurance.

Oh, and yes it was 15 minutes or less (well actually it was 2 phone calls of 15 minutes or less).  After he gave me the initial quote I needed to discuss the option with Paul, so the guy actually offered to call me back today to find out if I wanted to switch.  As opposed to me calling the call center back and getting whichever random person got my call.  The second call was shorter than the first since he already had our basic info and just basically needed to get payment info and verify the rest.  All that... and the guy was in Knoxville... just about 4 hours away from us (rather than on the other side of the world).

I'm not promoting Traveller's here; well I kinda am.  Give them a call and see if they can save you some money.  But, more importantly, take the time to get some quotes on your insurance; you might just find that yes you can save 20% or more on your rates.

How We Save On Our Cable Bill

Netflix Standard Display Offer 728x90A couple of months ago (back when we first got on this track of saving money), I called up our cable company (Comcast) and just asked if there was anything they could do to lower our bill.  First off, we took off the movie channels.  We'd subscribed to them on a special deal for only $5 a month and that deal was about to run out anyway.  But, we realized that since we'd added those channels we didn't really use them.  We watched one show on HBO (True Blood) and that was it.  For the price we were paying each year for the movie channels (even at the discounted rate) we could buy each new season of True Blood on DVD.

We really didn't watch movies on the movie channels because we already had Netflix and we were used to using that as our movie option.  We have it set up to be able to watch streaming movies instantly via our Tivo and our Wii (or on any computer in the house).  So, the movie channels were just overkill.

Talking to the rep from Comcast he did find a current promo that was running that cut our cable bill in half.  What I found out was that any deal they are currently offering for "new subscribers" they will also give to current subscribers - IF YOU ASK for it!  So, I put a reminder in my phone to call back in a few months and ask what new deals are running that we can get in on.

I've been an avid fan of Netflix since the early days, I think I signed up in like 2003, way back before they had any competition and before they offered streaming movies.  I've always loved the conveinence of having the movies come right to my house.  You just set up a "wishlist" of movies and put the movies you most want to see at the top and then each time you send a movie back they send you the next one on the list.  They send the movies to you in the same envelope that you use to return it (you don't pay any extra postage fees on top of your membership fee).  It usually takes about 3 days for them to get the movie you sent back and for you to get the next one on your list.

Back before the days of streaming movies, I had an account that allowed me to have 3 movies at home at one time.  I think it cost about $20/month.  Now that they offer the streaming movies, I just have 1 DVD at home at a time and I can watch unlimited movies via streaming for about $9/month.  You really can't beat that deal; especially when you consider there are no extra costs involved.  I've kept a DVD for four months before and still no extra costs (any other service I'd have ended up buying that movie three times or more).

If you've considered Netflix in the past, or you just think you might want to give it a try, they offer a 1 Month Free Trial, so you have plenty of time to decide if it's for you or not.  I've talked to many people who have completely cancelled cable in favor of Netflix because there is just so much available on their instant streaming.  No, they don't have every single new release on their instant streaming (but that's why you get the DVD option, as well).  There are, however, tons of television series, movies, kids shows/ movies, exercise videos and much more available through streaming.  Heck, there's so much on streaming that I keep my streaming queue full constantly despite watching movies.  If you are interested, you can click here to sign up for your FREE Trial and see what you think.  If you are already a Netflix user, I'd love to hear your thoughts.

FWIW, I've got streaming set up on a Tivo, Wii and a Wifi enabled DVD player. I like the Wii options the best.  It's also available on the other major gaming systems, but I haven't tried it on those.