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Buying your own modem can save you money, but is it worth it?

Posted at 3:27 PM, Dec 06, 2019

With cable, internet and streaming services, our bills sometimes feel like they’re getting out of hand, but there’s one thing you can do to cut a few bucks per month.

Nick Chalm was spending more than $150 each month on various entertainment services.

"It kind of gets quite expensive,” said Chalm. “At the end of the month, you end up spending hundreds of dollars on things you hardly use."

So, Chalm looked at his bill to see where he could cut back and noticed that if he returned his modem to his cable company and bought his own, he could save.

How much exactly? Well, Chalm’s Xfinity modem costs $15 a month to rent. A new modem from Best Buy costs about $80. In his first year without renting, he could save around $100. The second year, he could save $180.

That all sounds great, but when the time came to shop for a modem, it wasn’t as easy as Chalm hoped. Turns out, there are a lot of choices.

"There were like mesh extenders, Google makes routers and there are all kind of little details,” said Chalm.

Jeff Myers with Action Computers says the process might have been easy for Chalm, but he does not recommend it for everyone.

"You can certainly find it online but what you are looking at is a bunch of numbers, letters and you just don't know what you're getting."

Myers says to ask yourself, “"Do you have someone to support you in doing a setup or are you someone who is just good with doing everything yourself?"

Many people have had issues with internet and they usually call the provider to help, but if you buy your own modem, Myers says “a lot of times they are going to point the finger and say well it's your modem it's your problem."

When it comes to saving money, Myers says technology is changing rapidly and if you want fast internet, you're going to have to keep updating your modem annually, meaning that financially, buying your own modem might not be the best move.

If you decide to continue renting your modem, know that you can always call your provider and ask if there is newer version, that way you're always getting the highest quality of internet service.