especially true of hosting i think, and a few extra dollars a month comes to nothing compared to being out of the google index for a cycle (due to downtime) or loosing visitors because the host is serving pages too slow, or time waisted waiting on helplines, yadda yadda
ps. the most expensive hosting i've had was when i paid a year up front on a "great deal" - i then dropped them after 2 months which was a brave but good decision.
search google groups for your potential host to see who's been left irate with them, positive comments be more wary of due to possible spam.
i think having dns control away from the hosts is also handy ... making changes for outgoing clients may not be a priority for an overworked/inefficient hosting company