In the last year I’ve moved house a lot having gone through a break up, sofa surfing, living in an AirBNB, renting and now living with my boyfriend whilst his house is on the market and we begin blending our families together. With each move getting the best deal on my utilities including the best broadband and phone deals has been top priority.
Going from two full time salaries to being a single mum on a temporary job contract, in an expensive rental (just because I opted for the property I could get in quickest) and not in receipt of any child maintenance was a scary place to be in. It was an incredible amount of pressure to be under knowing that I had sole responsibility of keeping a roof over my sons’ heads if I wanted to be able to keep the shared custody arrangement we had.
Fortunately a number of the companies I had contracts with were really understanding of my situation. I had some lovely customer service from the gym I was a member of and no longer lived near to. They made things really simple for me to cancel that. However the most expensive contract I had was our £200 a month family car lease which of course was solely in my name!
I tried to keep it going for as long as I could but knew that it wasn’t sustainable. This was especially as I was still paying a considerable amount on nursery fees as James wasn’t quite 3 yet so I wasn’t eligible for any help towards funding. At the point of moving into my rental, on pay day after all the bills went out, I was minus £40 immediately. This was before paying for fuel or food. It was time to get all those utilities right down!
I’m so fortunate that my grandad was just giving up driving and was able to gift me his car at this time. I did have the expense of the early repayment I needed to make to get my out of the contract plus the damage costs but its all felt worth it now. I finally have more control over my outgoings!
Most people know that finding the best deal for your utilities is important but if you’re already dealing with finance-related stress, then shopping around can feel like a job just too much to take on. That’s why a trustworthy online broadband comparison site can really help you out at an already stressful time.
Comparison sites can save you so much time and effort, so you can use the rest of your time to focus on what really matters, such as spending time relaxing and enjoying your children. Self-care isn’t all bath bombs and candles. It can be debt reduction and money saving tools to help you get your life back on track.
Not all comparison sites are the same. Like going to a solicitor, a garage or a hospital, you don’t need to fix an issue yourself. If you got really sick, most people wouldn’t spend week’s googling remedies and taking a leap of faith on a solution. There are people to go to and they tend to have specialist knowledge and this is the same for comparison sites. If you’re targeting broadband and phone deals then of course you’d go to a trustworthy online broadband comparison site which specialises in this.
Broadband and phone deals
I have no idea why (if you know the reason please email me!) but when you move house, broadband isn’t like your electricity and water which is a constant supply and you just inform the provider of a change of name on the account. Instead, you need to open a new account and get reconnected with a broadband company each time. This is really frustrating if like me, you only got a week’s notice for a move in date and aren’t able to ensure how long you are going to be living there. This made it difficult to know if I should commit to a yearlong contract.
After a search online I also found companies which I’d heard of for different services also offered broadband such as Post Office! It was great to see which companies had no set up costs too. This is really appealing when you’ve just moved whether you’ve bought or are renting as the initial outlay for moving costs, bond/deposit are so draining on your finances!
To get the most value from a comparison website it is best to know how much you can afford on a monthly basis before you start. Having this budget in mind before you begin searching is essential, otherwise you’re at risk of getting your head turned by what appears to be cheap add-ons to contracts or subscriptions which are free to start with and then increase as time goes on.
It’s also really important to check out the column in your comparison which lets you know if there will be any potential mid-contract price hikes. If you’re on a strict budget then this feature is essential.
In addition to setting your budget before your start, it can be useful to have a list of priorities for your new contract to include. For example, is PC security important to you or do you need a provider who won’t be doing credit checks? Or are you someone who doesn’t go out a lot and finds it worth the expense to invest in something like NOWTV for watching the latest box sets because getting it as part of a package could save you as a small fortune.
Of course, you don’t have to wait until you’ve moved house. You don’t even have to wait until the end of a contract to shop around for a better deal. All you have to do is pop your postcode into this page and see if it is worth an early switch out to a different provider. You could be saving money earlier than you planned!