My wife and I were recently on vacation and had a once in a lifetime opportunity to ride the Orient Express. It was truly magical to be jettisoned back into the early part of the 19th century sitting on plush armchairs, dining with fine china, and silverware that was actually made of silver. As we journeyed from Cheltenham to Southampton in England, we got into a lively conversation with couple sitting across from us in the train car. This couple was retired and after a discussion around mobile phone technology, they gave us some food for thought around why to sill have a landline.
- I want to get to know my daughter-in-law– One of the most interesting comments they made during the trip is that home phones allow both partners from the family to pick up the phone. In today’s world, if you have a child that is married you might generally call only their mobile phone. This doesn’t give you a chance to connect often with your new daughter or son in law. When you call on the home phone, you might be able to phone at a time when you can specifically talk to the newest member of your family as opposed to your own child. This will happen very infrequently with a mobile phone.
- It’s the best place to send telemarketers– It’s annoying today no matter what hour of the day it is to get a solicitation from a telemarketer. However, by giving only the home phone number out to these types of organizations, you won’t have bothersome people calling your mobile phone for the next sales pitch. Since most home phones have called ID (and many show up right on the TV), you don’t even need to answer the phone.
- Reception– I am actually a huge advocate of things like Face Time as it gives a great opportunity to have some type of physical connection when you make a phone call. However, cell phone reception and face time type connection can get spotty from time to time. You don’t generally drop calls with your home phone.
It’s been debatable over the past five whether keeping a landline is an intelligent idea with the advancements made in mobile technology. Is the money you pay each month for the landline worth it or it is time to discard your phone to go hands free all the time?
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Ted Jenkin, CFP®, AAMS®, AWMA®, CRPC®, CMFC®, CRPS®, is co-CEO of oXYGen Financial and is a top ranked personal finance blogger (www.yoursmartmoneymoves.com). He is a regular contributor to Investment News, The Wall Street Journal, and The Atlanta Journal Constitution. Securities and Investment Advisory Services offered through NFP Advisor Services, LLC (NFPAS), Member FINRA/SIPC. Oxygen Financial is not affiliated with NFPAS.