Wednesday, September 18, 2019

FWOTW: another year of saving money on our internet bill

*after 12 months, your bill goes up to $65.991

It’s time to share another frugal win of the week (FWOTW) for our family!  

Every year, our internet service provider (Spectrum) gives us a new customer promotional rate that is good for only 12 months. Unfortunately, Spectrum is the only high speed internet provider in our area so we cannot switch providers.   We’ve been paying $44.99 a month (100Mbps) for our internet for the last year and our promotion is now over.  Our new bill was going to be $65.99, a $21 monthly increase!  I’d rather invest an extra $21 a month instead of paying more for the same service we already have.

When I checked out, I saw that the current new customer promotion for high speed internet is still $44.99 a month for 12 months. I then called customer service to try to lower our monthly bill.  The representative offered to lower our bill to $54.99, a $10 increase from our current bill.  It’s a shame that these big corporations would rather reward new customers than try to keep existing customers happy.  Since the customer service representative could not match the new customer promotion, I cancelled our internet account. 

5 minutes later, my wife called Spectrum and signed up for the new member promotional rate for $44.99 a month.  Our internet service was down for 30 minutes while my wife drove to the local Spectrum store to return the previous modem (free with service) and pick up a newer modem for her new account.  This is now the third year that we’ve had to cancel and re-sign up for new service to keep our rate down. 
This simple act of canceling and re-signing up for internet will save us $252 over the next year!

Sunday, September 1, 2019

Side hustles August 2019

The great thing about doing side hustles to generate extra income is that you can hustle on your own terms.  The more hard work, time, and creative effort you put in, the more extra money you can make.  You can hustle as little or as much as you want, whenever you want.  It’s your extra money, and you can choose how you want to spend it.  Instead of focusing on what ideas don’t apply to you, try focusing on different side hustle ideas that you can implement to work for your situation.

Once a month (usually on the 1st), I like to post a short summary of our personal and financial situation for the previous month.  While I don’t often post articles, I am committed to documenting all of my side hustle income.  Here I’ll share some of what’s been going on with our lives and our side hustles. 

Welcome to September!  Did you have a good August?  It’s been quite a busy month for our family.
We continue to get lots of value from our passes to the Children’s Museum at La Habra. Our son has practically memorized the layout of the entire museum.  We went to visit the museum twice this month.  
We were kind of bummed to find out that the museum will be closed all of September for renovations, but we are looking forward to the new upcoming changes.
Another theme of this past month was exploring different playgrounds.  There are two playgrounds within a short walk of our home and several within a short driving distance.  Our kids love going down slides, climbing on jungle gyms and running around. 
The Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach recently completed their brand new exhibit, Pacific Visions.  This new exhibit includes an art gallery, theatre show, interactive media displays and more.  Since we can see ourselves coming back more than once per year, we decided to get annual membership passes for $159.  The aquarium was pretty crowded on this day; we look forward to visiting in the future when it’s less packed.
Through, we recently discovered the Jumping Fun Kids indoor playground located in Buena Park.  This indoor facility has tons of toys for every age group, as well as huge bounce houses and slides.  Our kids had so much fun running around, jumping and playing with all of the toys.
In other news, our son just started Pre-Kindergarten.  It’s been amazing watching him develop friendships, build social skills, and increase his vocabulary.  He’s no longer a toddler! 
Here’s our monthly summary of side income that we have generated in the previous month of August.
Cash Back
On 8.17, my wife received a $10 statement credit on her AMEX Gold card from the monthly $10 dining credit on her card.  This was for a $10 purchase through Yelp/Grubhub.
On 8.23, I received a $0.03 statement credit on my AMEX SimplyCash Business credit card.
On 8.23, I received a $4.00 statement credit on my Chase Freedom Unlimited credit card for 5% cash back at Kriser’s pet store.
On 8.30, I received a $0.82 statement credit on my Chase Freedom Visa card for 10% cash back at Starbucks.

Rental Income
On 8.5, we received a net profit of $450 from our rental property. 

Survey Income
On 8.8, I received a $15 Amazon gift card from M3 Global Research for completing a medical survey.
On 8.14, I received a $40 Amazon gift card for completing a medical survey with M-Panels

Miscellaneous Income
On 8.7, I received a $212 check for consultation fees.  This was for my remaining balance on testifying as an expert witness for a court case.  For this service, I billed at $125 an hour.
On 8.15, my wife received $20 Venmo payment for selling a baby bottle on Facebook Marketplace.

Monthly Totals:
We earned $14.85 from cash back
We earned $450 from rental income
I earned $55 for completing online surveys
I earned $232 of miscellaneous income

All of this totals $751.85 from our side hustles for the month of August!  While it’s nice bringing in extra income, our number one priority continues to be spending time as a family and appreciating the here and now.  I know that this blog has turned into a once a month side hustles and personal life update.  We are working on some new content, thank you for your support!

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