Imagine going to the grocery store to pick up a few things, then learning you had to buy everything to get anything.
Sound far-fetched? It's exactly what you're doing when you watch a few channels on cable, but pay for hundreds. Ready to cut that cable? Here's an idiot's guide to doing it, step by step.
Step one: Start tracking what you're watching. Once you have a list of must-see TV, it's time to find those shows without cable.
Step two: Get yourself a nice digital antenna, so you can pick up your local stations as well as a surprising number of others.
Now here's something important: buy your antenna locally from a store with a liberal return policy.
You may need to try several before you find one that works. You may also need to put one outside.
Step three: get the internet to your TV. If you don't have an internet-enabled TV, you're going to have to buy a little box, could cost $30 to $100, it's going to go on your home network, and get the internet right to your screen.
Once you're online, see if you can find your favorite shows free by going to their websites. If not, check Hulu plus: they've got a monster catalog of shows for $8/month.
Final step: Movies. Get them through Netflix for $8 a month, or free from Amazon if you already pay for Amazon Prime.
There are also solutions for sports, including maybe going to a sports bar. Inevitably, when you do this, you're going to find shows you might not be able to get this way.
If that happens, just ask yourself: is it worth hundreds of dollars to see that show?
Bottom line? If you're tired of buying everything in the store when all you want is a few things, learn how to cut the cable.
Detailed advice and instructions waiting right here at moneytalksnews.com. I'm Stacy Johnson.