If you pay for internet access at home – which I imagine almost everyone reading this does – take a look at your bill. Lots of times companies will give you a base package amount and then tack on extra fees and taxes. Take a closer look at the fees. Most people can shave of ten bucks each month with just a few easy steps. Who doesn’t want to save on your internet bill?
The Modem Trap
Do me a favor right now: log into your account at your internet provider’s web site (Comcast, Centurylink, Time Warner, etc.). Pull up your bill.
Go ahead, I’ll wait…
Back? Good! Take a look at the fees on your bill.
If you’re paying 10 bucks a month for a modem rental fee, STOP WHAT YOU ARE DOING AND TAKE NOTES. Most people rent a modem because they either don’t know what a modem DOES or they don’t know how much a good modem costs.
Purpose of Modems
For those of you unfamiliar with what a modem does, it’s pretty simple. Modems just connect your router to the internet. It takes a coax cable in, and lets you connect it to your router, which will distribute (or route) the connection from there. Without a modem, you can’t be on the internet.
There are some combo devices, frequently called Gateways, which try to pull double duty as both. Unfortunately, they almost always perform more poorly.
ROI? Who Really Cares?
Most of the time when I buy something I think about the return on it. Sometimes it’s financial – like investing. Other times it has a sort of “quality of life” ROI – those purchases are things I’ll spend a bit more money on, for their quality of life return. But something like a modem?
Think about this: how long are you going to have internet access? This isn’t really one of those things you just “try out”. If you want internet access at home, you probably will be paying for it indefinitely.
With that in mind, does it make sense to spend $120 a year for the rest of your life to rent something that you can buy for $50-$100? Hell to the no. It doesn’t even make sense to do it for a year!
Investigating the Options
If you go to Amazon and search for modems, you’ll find a lot. As in like, 80,000+. What the heck should you look for? Pretty simple: look for something that’s fast, with DOCSIS 3.0, and is supported by your cable company.
Here‘s the one I purchased:
Setup was a breeze, it was inexpensive, and with over 24,000 reviews I felt comfortable that it was a quality product. I haven’t had any issues with it, and have moved a few times with it as well.
As a matter of fact, I got this modem because Comcast couldn’t get theirs to work. The tech who came out to activate my internet (had to set some stuff up in the building) recommended this one, and it’s been awesome so far.
Call, Cancel, Save
Do yourself a favor and buy a modem today. Once it comes, contact your cable company to get that charge removed from your account and return their rented modem.
Then set up an easy auto-transfer of ten bucks into a savings account so that money’s not just going out the window to something else.
It may not be much but it’s a no-brainer.
ONE THING TO NOTE! If you have a Gateway – one of those combo modem/router peripherals – currently, you’ll want to buy a separate router. Both of them should perform better than any ‘dual purpose’ components – they are jacks of all trades, master of none.
If you’re looking to buy a router, I recommend the TP-Link AC1900 Wireless Wi-Fi Gigabit Router. I’ve been using it for as long as my modem, and it is awesome. Touch-screen setup, easy to set up a guest network, and overall a breeze. Best router I’ve owned. It’s a little pricier than some of the options, but I’ve found that a quality router is way less frustrating than a crappy one.
Do you currently rent a modem?
Note: Those links above are Amazon Affiliate links which means if you buy stuff from them, I get a small kickback. Don’t worry, it costs you exactly the same! That money helps support the site. As an added bonus, I change them all to Amazon Smile so that some money also gets donated to charity. Feel the love, yo.