The average cable bill in the U.S. is $86 a month. If you think about the time you actually spend watching cable, that's a pretty steep price. While opening a cable bill that approaches one hundred bucks might cause your stomach to turn, there's no relief in sight. In fact, by the year 2020, the average monthly cable bill is expected to reach a whopping $200, according to the NPD Group, a research firm.

On the average, cable bills go up 6 percent each year, reports the NPD Group. Cable fees are rising because it's becoming more and more expensive for cable companies to license programming. DVD sales are down, so content creators are charging more for their programming.

You might think that à la carte pricing would be the answer for viewers who are unhappy with paying for tons of channels that they don't watch frequently; however, cable providers are balking at this pricing option because it would undermine their business model. And even so, the jury is out on whether à la carte would actually save money.

Since cable providers aren't providing pricing options to cut down on your monthly bill, it's up to consumers to come up with ways to reduce the fees that they pay. While the thought of jumping through the hoops of calling your cable company's customer service line and sorting through all of the phone tree options might give you a headache, a simple phone call could save you hundreds of dollars on your annual cable service. But first you need to evaluate your bill.