Lower Your Cable Bill in 10 minutes

by Ryan Guina

A couple months ago my cable bill increased. We have a newborn and life has been busy, so I put off calling them to doing anything about it. The other day I finally got around to calling the cable company and negotiated a reduced cable bill. The result? I saved over $7.50 per month over the next 12 months, and I didn’t need to agree to a new contract. That’s $90 a year in savings for 10 minutes of work. Not a bad ROI!

How to lower you cable bill

Research pricing. Negotiating a lower cable bill shouldn’t be very difficult. The first thing you want to do is gather information. Find out how much you are paying for your service, then find comparable service levels from your cable company’s competitors. Visit the competitor’s website, watch for commercials on TV, look in your mail for fliers, or simply call them for pricing information. Just note that you will have more leverage if the competitor’s offer is advertised.

Find competitive deals. Direct TV is currently offering great deals, like this Special DirecTV offer.

Call your cable company. When you call, ask for the retentions office and be nice to them. Being courteous will go much further than being demanding or threatening to cancel right away unless they lower your bill. When the customer service rep comes on the line, be up front and let them know you would like to negotiate a lower cable bill and give them factual information about the other service plans in your area. They will know all the advertised rates in the area, so don’t try to pull a fast one; you likely won’t get anywhere.

Be prepared to walk. If the cable company declines your request, express your disappointment and mention that you would like to cancel your cable service at the end of the billing cycle (even if you have no intention of leaving). This gives them a chance to come back with a lower “final offer” to try and retain your service. If the end of your billing cycle is several days or weeks out, they may call back before disconnecting your service with another offer lower than you are currently paying. If they don’t give you the offer you like, you can go ahead with your disconnection, or cancel the disconnection and maintain your service.

Doesn’t work? Try again later. You may not have as much success with this tactic if you have done it multiple times with the same cable company. They can always check their records for your billing history. If this method doesn’t work, try again in a couple months. The cable company may need to make certain quotas or have a different policy in place. If they say no again, you are out nothing but a few minutes time. If they agree to lower your bill, you can save a nice chunk of change.

This applies to multiple services. This tactic also works for satellite, DirecTV, internet service, telephone service, or other recurring services where you are not already in a contract.

Published or updated November 11, 2010.
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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Manshu

I wasn’t able to convince them to lower the bill, but they did give me a few extra channels. While a lot of those just had the Shamwow ads, I did get Bloomberg also, which was not a bad thing to have for free 🙂


2 Craig

It’s all about leverage, if you threaten to leave they may give you a deal. But if they don’t then you should have the option and then actually leave. If I had FIOS available I would but I don’t and have DirecTV and didn’t like it so am stuck with Comcast.


3 Ryan

Time Warner pretty much has a monopoly on cable service in our area. There are satellite TV options, but I stick with Time Warner because of the high speed internet more than the TV service.


4 Hank

Get rid of the extra channels….that’s how you really lower you cable bill. Do you really need 20 premium movie channels? No.


5 kathleen mchale

9/30/2010 thursday i had cable in my apartment when i moved in[january 1994] i had a10.00 a month deal,but took my tv out and watch tv in the living room on the first floor,now[community room] they have a big tv and alot of channels.i don’t know how much it costs per month,but i’m thinking of buying a new tv and haveing cable in my apartment again.


6 Maggie

$7.50 for 10 minutes of work is not bad at all! However, a friend of mine told me about this company called BillCutterz and they saved me $50 a month with Comcast, and it took only about 10 minutes of my time. It was totally worth it for me to use them just so I wouldn’t have to call customer service and wait on hold for who knows how long. The best part was I didn’t have to lose my movie channels (I love watching Game of Thrones!).


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