I wrote earlier about how I’m breaking up with my cable company. As of December 11th, my monthly cable bill will drop from about $110 per month to $37 per month. Oh yeah!

I am adding Netflix at $10/month, but that still $47 versus $110, which saves $63 a month. That’s $756 a year. It’s amazing how expensive it is to watch a bunch of crap on TV.

Anyway, now that I’m down to just internet, I had the option to either pay $37 per month for just internet service or about $50 per month for the internet service plus a router/modem combo from the ISP. They want me to pay $13 a month just to rent their crappy equipment.

Of course I’m not just going to take that kind of a fee, so I looked up how much it would cost to buy my own equipment. The answer: $107.98 plus tax. I got a nice $20 router with fantastic reviews and an $88 modem that was on the approved list from my new ISP.

$11 per month is $132 per year, and that is just to rent the stupid equipment. You don’t even own it. On the other hand, you can pay $108 up front (less than 10¬†months of rental fees) and avoid that charge forever.

How to Set Up Your Modem and Router

When you have your own modem, the only thing you needs to do is to give the ISP the MAC number on your modem. It should be right on the bottom of the hardware so it’s easy to find. Once the ISP has authorized your modem then you are good to go. Either plug your computer in directly with an ethernet cord or don’t be cheap and buy a $20 wireless router.

The router is what sends the wireless signal throughout the house. You plug this directly into the modem and then follow the router’s instructions to set up your network. I strongly recommend putting a password on your network unless you want people stealing your wifi and potentially your identity as well.

The best thing about owning your router is that you get to set the password yourself and no one else knows it. When the cable company sets everything up for you, the installer dude knows your password. Call me paranoid, but I don’t like strangers knowing my passwords even if they do wear a beautiful Time Warner Cable logo on their polo.

It’s pretty easy to set up your own modem and router at home, and this way you can avoid the $3 or $8 or $11 or whatever monthly charge to rent the equipment. It will save you hundreds of dollars in the long run.