Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Hidden Expenses


I stole disturbing picture from MSNBC. In between projects I read a story there about hidden fees in various bills. I'm not exactly overwhelmed with shock. I mean, when I was a kid this kind of thing struck me as incredibly unfair.
Why should a store be able to advertise candy for 99 cents when the truth is that to purchase said candy one would need a dollar ten? Or for that matter why should Comcast be able to advertise phone, cable, and internet for $99 when I'll really be paying well over $120 every month - before the promotional period ever ends?
- Oh, and by the way Comcast, you tore up our house when you installed the cable, you left cords hanging down all over the place in our basement, and the installer was rude. False advertising mayhaps?

When you're a little kid trying to buy a candy bar and coming up short because your weekly allowance didn't take taxes into consideration all of this seems a bit traumatic. Now it just seems annoying.
What particularly interested me though, was that companies don't report the hidden fees, which makes it look like inflation is lower than it really is. It's also why budgeting still leaves you in the red. It doesn't matter that Comcast (yes Comcast, I am a little angry with you and so are other people) has an advertised deal that fits into your budget, because the real deal is $30 more than you can reasonably spend.
Not that I personally have this problem, because I don't really budget, I just get feel for what I can buy in a pay period. If I notice that my bank account is getting lower instead of higher I cut something out. It works for me, but what about all those people who work so hard to be good and still end up being bad? Seems like a bummer.


Kenji said...

haha, I get comcast for free!!

Well, I think the previous people in my apartment had it, and Comcast forgot to disconnect it when they moved out. I'm not complaining.

Robin Marie said...

Kenji: Isn't that stealing?

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