CLEVELAND - What if we handed you $1,000 right now? Pretty good deal right?
Well, here’s some on-your-side advice about how to put a thousand dollars or more in your pocket with some options for your technology and your exercise routines.
"I try to avoid paying extra charges whenever I can," said Tina Leneghan, who we caught up with at the Verizon store in Independence.
She can start by cutting her TV cable. There’s an Antennacraft TV antenna for $35 that will pull in free TV in HD quality. "They plug into a power outlet so they pull more signal,” said Radio Shack Manager Rob Flecha. “So, you have a better chance of getting more channels and a stronger reception."
There’s also a $50 version that is omni-directional. "They pretty much find the signal themselves for you,” explained Flecha. “They're really easy they're flat. You can mount them on the wall,” he showed us in the store at Steelyard.
Once you have your “ears” up, think about this: Forbes Magazine recently reported the average cable bill - including only TV costs - is $78 per month. In just one year, you could save $936 if you pulled the plug on cable just by adding an antenna.
Next, cut the Internet and save about $450 per year. FreedomPop lets you access 1G of free high-speed Internet, if you buy its plug-and-go hub for $89. Verizon offers several Internet options, including a free feature in its Share Everything Plan where you turn your cell phone into a Wi-Fi hot spot with 3G and 4G connections.
"Our LTE network actually allows for speed that let you stream live high-definition video,” said Jennifer Derkin, Data Sales Consultant for Verizon Wireless. “You can do your email. You can surf the web. You can do Skype, Facetime, whatever you're looking for,” Durkin added.
Save on your cell phone bills, too. We found Net10 in Target, a prepaid monthly option that you can use with your current cell phone if it has a SIM card. It offers unlimited talk and text, plus 3.5 gigabytes of data, for $60 a month.
Target offers its own pre-paid plan called Bright Spot where you get 4 gigs for $65 a month, a discount for setting up a new account and an extra perk: “Once you've purchased six months of Bright Spot, you get a $25 gift card through Target,” said Nick Slater, who’s an Executive Team Leader with Target.
All of these options put a spin on traditional ways of getting your services, but that's okay for people like Leneghan.
"(You) just gotta keep your eyes open and pay attention to what offers are out there,” suggested Leneghan.
As far as your workouts, if you have a gym membership that you're neglecting, you might want to get rid of it. You can take the first step by buying a used workout machine like a treadmill, bike, or elliptical that’s in good condition. It'll pay itself off with what you would've spent on a gym membership.
And remember, getting up and down the stairs in your home is free. Running or walking outside is free, too.
Just make sure before you cancel your gym memberships, cable, internet, or cell phone services that you check about possible cancelation fees. That way you know exactly how much it will cost you to make changes to your budget.