Canceling Protection One/ADT

ARGH!  We decided to cancel our home security monitoring through Protection One.  How difficult is this, you ask?  VERY!!!!!

We recently had our cable-based internet router die – just straight up quit working one day.  We spent the evening returning/exchanging it at the local office.  They also gave us an updated wireless modem.  After setting it all up, we realized our landline wasn’t working (service provided by our “cable” provider.)  After another hour on the phone with them, they claim all is perfect.

3 days later – count that – not 1, not 2, but 3 days later we can’t set the alarm when we are ready to leave the house.  Evidently our backup battery for the cellular backup option died because the system was unable to use the landline.

A technician came to the house a few days later after being told we needed to have a software update.  John took the afternoon off the deal with this.  The technician arrives, does the update, yet still can’t get the landline option to send a signal for the alarm system.  The “only option” is to upgrade to cellular for “ONLY” $5 MORE PER MONTH.

So now our monthly bill is up to $67.  We have a discussion after the technician leaves and decide that is just too much.  We can probably get a different alarm system cheaper and technologically more advanced.

I call to cancel and they remind me that we have been “loyal” customers for over 10 years.  Yep, we know how long we’ve had the alarm system and still want to cancel.  Now starts the drama!  I forgot about the 30 days notice requirement.  I assumed they would cut us off at the end of the pre-paid month.  NOPE!

Website says you can’t cancel online – you must call and have them convince you that you are putting your family at risk by cancelling.  Then, get this, you have to send an email to cancel.  Cancel date is based on when they receive your email/written request (which they don’t tell you).  Thankfully we emailed as they told us we needed to email.

Can you believe we “missed” the cut-off for canceling at the end of the billing cycle by 2 days??  (According to our contract, we need to give a 30 day notice.)  They then claim that our contract states that we need to give notice prior to the next billing cycle and that our cancel date won’t be in 30 days (Nov. 7) but Dec. 5th because of the billing cycle requirement.  They also have someone call multiple times trying to offer us a 36 month contract for $50 without updating any of the technology.  They did eventually offer no monthly payments until 2020 but with no upgraded equipment.  They finally agree after a week of emails and phone calls to cancel at the 30 day mark (Nov. 7).

How hard is it to just stop monitoring the system?  They claim it is very difficult.  My guess is all that happens is they “flip” a switch and we are off.  Anyone know anything about this side of it?

The icing on the cake is today we got a bill for $15 for the cellular upgrade.

Now what do we do with the ancient equipment?  What will happen when we try to disconnect everything?  Will the alarm still sound?  Can they remotely wipe out our system?  Will that mess with the landline?  Not looking forward to Nov. 7th.

Annual Financial Update, April 2017

From our original financial simplification post:

Of course, there are certain “purchases” we strongly feel were necessary and must pay for:  home/mortgage ($128,152.60), cars and RV ($16,653.62), college education for our children ($93,628.93).

Grand total: $238,435.15 as of April 1, 2015.  Our goal is to be debt free in 5 years.  Each of these 3 categories were “necessary” in our mind to give our children a stable environment and educational/professional opportunities.  We wouldn’t do anything different in these areas.


Another year has passed since we started this blog and we have some financial updates!  Barb didn’t work overtime during this time period so our income dropped about $9,000.  We didn’t have to dip into savings for anything major this year but we also didn’t save anything.  We did take a seven week vacation last summer, a week-long trip to Hawaii, and 2 trips to visit the kiddo on the opposite coast via plane.  We made a concerted effort to avoid using any credit cards this last year for any reason.  We were hoping for $50,000 debt reduction but didn’t quite make it.

We are pretty sure we can pay off the cars, 2 student loans, and the furnace/AC system during the next year.  Next year debt reduction goal is $50,000 and have our savings account at $20,000.  Guess we will need a few more lean spending months!!

  • Cars and RV $3419.36 (decreased balance by $6152.53)
  • Mortgage $106252.74 (decreased balance by $10,193.11)
  • Student loans $44692.39 (decreased balance by $25.582.75)
  • Savings $15,553.95 (not as much as we would like but better than 2 years ago!)

    Total Debt Reduction in the last year = $41,928.39

    Total Debt Reduction in the last 2 years = $84,070.66

Update on Finances April 2016

From our original financial simplification post:

Of course, there are certain “purchases” we strongly feel were necessary and must pay for:  home/mortgage ($128,152.60), cars and RV ($16,653.62), college education for our children ($93,628.93).

Grand total: $238,435.15 as of April 1, 2015.  Our goal is to be debt free in 5 years.  Each of these 3 categories were “necessary” in our mind to give our children a stable environment and educational/professional opportunities.  We wouldn’t do anything different in these areas.

A year has passed since we started this blog and we have some financial updates!  We are close to living on one income to speed this along!

  • Cars and RV $9571.89 (decreased balance by $7,081.73)
  • Mortgage $116,445.85 (decreased balance by $11,706.77)
  • Student loans $70,275.14 (decreased balance by $23,353.79)

    Total Debt Reduction = $42,142.29

    Our goal was $47,687.03  John is happy with our current total since we also paid for a wedding last summer for kiddo#1.  Barb is happy with any reduction knowing we had a wedding last summer!!

  • We’ve also been trying to put some into savings each month – right now we have $15,881.84
  •  Last year we had $1,827.58  
  • Total savings in one year = $14,054.26!!  It’s hard to believe we were spending that much extra on “nothing”!!

Falling off the Wagon . . .

We feel like we are spending money hand over fist!  The Great Flood of 2015 seems to have resulted in great profits for Home Depot!  Our contractor is purchasing most of the supplies there.  When the “water mitigation” crew removed our doors and door frames, they also took the door knobs!  So a trip to HD to purchase door knobs.  The doors were installed – now molding and baseboards needed to be picked out.  Today, we went and ordered the carpeting and “wood” flooring.  We debated eliminating the carpet, but we like having warm feet in the winter upon rising!  Guess these are needed items so maybe “Falling off the Wagon” isn’t exactly appropriate. Continue reading