Wednesday, June 29, 2016

How We Cut the Cord ...and Still Watch Our Shows!

When we moved into our new house we went through a lot of changes and learned to adapt (umm... we do NOT have air conditioning or a furnace.. HUGE adjustment).  So when we found out that our internet plus cable was going to be close to $200 we had to make a decision whether or not it was truly worth it to have cable.

I started researching online, polled friends and family, and had a lot of conversations with Adam on what we should do.  He ultimately pays the cable bill so really this came down to him.  After a lot of research, a lot of maneuvering, we were able to cut the cord and both win by using streaming services.   Since we started doing this I have had a lot of people ask me how we make it work..

Here's how!

First things first, the ONLY reason we were able to accomplish much of this was through the help of friends and family.

Select your streaming device - we went with the Roku 2 (because we do not have a Smart TV).  There are a ton on the market, Apple TV, Roku, Fire Stick, etc. This is your first step in cutting the cord.  From there we found the following ways to watch TV and not miss our favorite shows!

1. We worked with our local cable company to purchase the internet package that allowed us to hookup our Roku to the local network.   This provides us with our local tv channels: NBC, ABC, CBS, Fox.  We live in Woodville, between Eau Claire, WI and Minneapolis, MN.  Because of this, we get Fox Eau Claire and Fox Minneapolis = Packers Football (Eau Claire).  Adam's wish accomplished.

2. Netflix.  Each Netflix account allows multiple users, my brother gave us a login and we are able to watch shows on Netflix (Fuller House for me and Making of a Murderer for Adam).

3. Many channels require a cable login.  Since you can have multiple users on one account, we created our own login to access cable using Adam's parents cable account.  It doesn't impact them in any way and allows us to access the shows/channels we want to watch. Total win/win.

4. Hulu - I pay $8/month to have Hulu.  It's pretty much the equivalent to a DVR.  I get many different networks (ABC, NBC, CMT, CW, TLC, etc) AND I can watch shows the next day if i missed them the night before.  I caught up on SO many shows this way.  I love HULU, totally worth $8/month.

5.  Sling TV - Beta Version.  Sling purchased the rights to Fox Sports.   So we get FS1, FS2, and FSlocal, which for us is Fox Sports North.  FSN = Twins Baseball.  My mission was accomplished.  However, this one does come with a cost.  It's $20/month for Sling TV.  Other channels that come with Sling include HGTV, AMC, FX, Univision, etc... One of their greatest promotions (for us) was that if you purchased 3 months in advance you get a free Roku 2.. So we now have 3 of them that work on all channels.

6. Amazon Prime - If you have Amazon Prime, you can also stream videos on Roku as well.  We simply linked our Prime account and are able to watch Multiple shows (Downton Abbey!!).

7. And last, Roku has a TON of channels built in that you can access. Again, full transparency we are able to access all of these because we have the cable login - however there are some "Free" channels that do not require you to login.

While this may seem complex, it's something we have learned and has entirely grown on us since we started a year ago.  When we turn our TV on, it's as though we never cut the cord. I get to watch almost any show I want and without the crazy expense of cable.  My total bill per month is $28 and we may not keep Sling over the winter and re-subscribe next spring when baseball starts again.



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