goodbye, home phone

Toronto, 2017.01.01

We'll be cutting our home phone spend from $28/month + tax to ~ $9/month by going VOIP. The last time I used a home VOIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) phone was well over a decade ago. It sucked then, but I'm told it's reasonably usable now. Here's hoping.

Sadly, $5 of the $9 in fees is just for the phone dry loop - the final line in to our home from the telco's box at the end of the street. I suppose it makes sense, to offset the cost of repairing interruptions, but the interruptions are always at the telco's box, which tells me that it's operator error by the telco's staff (today when passing the thing, I saw that once again a tech had left the bloody panel open!).

There's also a $US 1.50 fee in there for 9-11 service. That leaves just $US 2 in costs for the actual phone service.

Naturally, Teksavvy's making us wait two weeks for the cut-over, which for some reason "requires" a technician coming to our home. They're also charging us $50 to cut the cord, so it'll take a couple of months for this move to pay for itself, but after six years of paying to ensure we've got reliable 9-11 access, it'll be nice to save a few bucks. We felt able to make this change because I reflexively used my mobile last time to call 9-11, and Mari did the same the time before that. (Note for non-parent readers: kids generate legit 9-11 calls like you wouldn't believe.)

I honestly have no idea why the telcos charge figures like $28 for a home phone any more, surely they're making it an unprofitable service by driving away clients? We'll put the savings toward that new TV service.

Cutting our home phone service puts the wraps on the expenses we picked up after a "trust company" leaked all our personal information. The new home phone number we picked up at that time comes with us, but not the service. We've recently cancelled the mail box we started renting at that time. Earlier in the year, we dropped the credit bureau monitoring service. In total, about $90 a month that we carried for 2-3 years.

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