HOUSTON - If you're looking to cut your bills right now, one place to save is on your cell phone.
The average family spends $157 bucks a month on cellphones, according J.D. Power and Associates. And BillShrink found 80% of us are overpaying.
When most people choose a cell phone service provider, they choose one of the "Big Four," AT&T, Verizon T-Mobile and Sprint.
But tech expert Andrew Moore-Crispin with Ting https://ting.com/ says there are alternative carriers called Mobile Virtual Network Operators, or MVNO's, that lease coverage from the Big Four and sell it for less.
"So you get the same level of coverage, same service you expect, but the difference is you now have access to a different business model," said Moore-Crispin.
You'll find a list of MVNO's and their prices on WireFly.com. And you don't have to sign a contract.
"MVNO's ... give you a whole different world of thoughts on how a cell phone plan should work, thoughts on how billing should work, how customer service should work," he explained.
And speaking of no-contract, pre-paid phones can also help you set a limit on how much you spend.
But even if you are in a contract, it doesn't hurt to ask your provider to cut your costs.
Said Moore-Crispin, "I will say it's always important to see what your cell phone provider is offering to new customers, as opposed to existing customers because those will often be different things. It's important to remember that it is ultimately a business relationship."
If you're going to continue working from home for a while and using wifi, you don't need unlimited mobile data.
Here's how to search for a lower cost plan to meet your needs.
Your cell phone bill shows your monthly usage.
Let's say you use 900 minutes a month of talk, send 300 text messages, but you don't even use one gigabyte of data.
You can go to WireFly.com, which lists plans by MVNO providers and their prices. We spotted a plan listed from Tello, for example, that might give you what you need for $9 a month.
Be sure to check that your phone is compatible with an MVNO provider before you switch, which you can check here: https://willmyphonework.net/