Cutting the cable connection to coax connector illustrating retired people cancelling cable TV service

Cord Cutting Five Years Later: My Cord Cutting Story


Cutting the cable connection to coax connector illustrating retired people cancelling cable TV serviceThis year will mark five years since my wife and I took the jump and became cord cutters. So I wanted to take a moment to dive into why I became a cord cutter and what I have learned over the last five years.

I also made a video telling my story:

First, Why I Became a Cord Cutter

About five years ago my wife and I sat down to go over our bills. We had some credit card debt and a car payment we really wanted to pay off, so we decided to see what we could do to pay them off as quickly as possible.

We started by looking at cutting down on eating out, cutting back on spending, and other ways to save money, but we quickly realized our DIRECTV bill was the biggest way we could quickly save money on our monthly bills.

At the time we paid over $112 a month just for TV. (We had DSL Internet that was separate from DIRECTV.) We also already had Netflix and Amazon Prime on top of the DIRECTV subscription. So not only did we pay $1,344 a year to DIRECTV, we also paid $99 to Amazon and $108 to Netflix (under the old pricing) for a grand total of $1,551 a year.

What made it even more painful is we quickly realized that we rarely watched shows live and typically watched them a few days later on our DVR.

So after some looking around, I found out most of the shows we watched could be found on Hulu for an extra $8 a month. For the two shows we wanted not on Hulu we discovered we could pay about $20 a year to watch them.

I found a used Roku HD on eBay for the bedroom and used our PS3 in our living room to stream. (We replaced the PS3 with a Roku 2 a few months later.)

That was a huge savings! However, this was back when cord cutting was not as easy as it is today. Five years ago there was no Sling TV, PlayStation Vue, etc. Becoming a cord cutter meant giving up access to cable channels.

Now cord cutting is so much easier for new and old cord cutters.

First, before I tell you what I use now for home use let me remind you that for work in the office I have every streaming player from Roku made in the last five years and every version of the Fire TV, Chromecast, Nvidia Shield, and the Apple TV 4th Generation along with every live TV streaming service, and I have tried many other streaming services.

Here Is What I Use Now

Netflix

Hulu

Amazon Prime (great for shipping and the videos/music are a huge bonus)

In the past for college football season, I used Sling TV or PlayStation Vue. This year I still have the Go Big deal from DIRECTV NOW so I may try that.

Add in an antenna and my Tablo DVR and you have my cord cutting setup.

To watch TV I recently upgraded to the new TCL Roku TVs for the bedroom and living room. I love having everything built in with no wires.

I still save a ton of money. From having to have a two-year contract to pay $112 a month I now pay $25 to $35 a month six months a year for a live TV streaming service. The best part is I get all the same sports channels I would with cable TV.

So that is how I became a cord cutter and what I currently use. If you want to see how much money I save, you can find a full breakdown of it HERE.

What is your cord cutting story? Leave us a comment and let us know.

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  • MacHead84

    Does your TCL Roku TV support DTV NOW or are you running that though an Apple TV/Firestick?

    • Yes all 4K Roku TVs support DIRECV NOW. They say other Roku TVs will get support soon.

      • MacHead84

        Thanks! Might consider grabbing one of these!

  • R.J. Spears

    Our household celebrates our 5 year cord cutting anniversary on Friday. Like you, we were looking to cut costs. After all the start-up costs (and one bad experiment with a multimedia PC), we have saved over $1300 during those five years. I sort of wished it would be more, but we keep adding services which cuts into the savings.

    What I can say is that we don’t miss cable. In fact, when we are at a relatives home or in hotel, we rarely watch the cable in the room, and even take a Roku on vacation with us.

  • Joe in Virginia

    We cut the cord about 4 months ago, thanks in large part to all the great advice and news on this site. We don’t miss cable at all! We had Directv and that cost about $110 a month. We have our internet separate through Charter because DSL in our home was seriously clocking in around 2 Mbs. So we are kinda stuck with them until 5G becomes a viable option. Right now, we have Sling and Hulu and it costs us about $50 a month. We we are saving about $600 a year and not missing anything at all that we used to watch on Directv.

  • Mike Glen

    Cut the Cord 6-7 yrs ago. Glad I did.

  • Bianca Underwood

    Cut the cord about 4 years ago. Don’t regret it for a second!

  • Michele Godtel

    trying..