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By Jay S. Fleischman
I may be dating myself, but I remember when television was free. True, we had only a few channels to flip through but it was unheard of to write a check for something as basic as TV. Then came the cable revolution, followed by satellite and services run by your telephone company. Each year, what was once a free service has become steadily more expensive. I just never realized it until I was going through the bills a few months ago and came across the bill. My wife nearly had to get out the paddles and shout, “Clear!”
Two cable boxes, no paid stations and a single DVR was costing us over $150 a month. Sure, that includes Internet access but still — $150 for the privilege of getting ad-supported stations? What a racket!
The next day, my head still woozy from the shock, I spent the day talking with clients who were looking for ways to get out of debt. One of them, a guy with a young child in tow, told me that he’d gone so far as become a cord-cutter in an effort to free up enough money to pay his student loans.
A cord-cutter? Never heard of it.
The Basics Of Cord-Cutting
Cord-cutting is, as it turns out, a phenomenon. People are canceling their cable and satellite television subscriptions, opting to watch movies and TV shows online. It’s way less expensive than forking over the big bucks to the cable operators.
In fact, a February 2012 report from Nielsen shows that the number of U.S. homes that have broadband Internet, but only free, broadcast TV grew 22.8% from 2011. The overall numbers are still only about 5% of the total population, but obviously it’s growing.
How Much Can You Save By Cutting The Cord?
Let’s say you