When it comes to paying your bills, it seems like it’s almost a second job just to keep track of everything and pay on time.
It doesn’t have to be, though! Here are 6 easy tips to help you manage your bills and save time for other things you really enjoy, like making more money.
This is the #1 thing you need to do to simplify your bill payments. Go through each and every regularly occurring bill you pay, whether it’s paid manually or automatically deducted from your account and write down the date that it’s paid on.
If you have bills that are not due the same date each month but are usually due around the same time of the month, go ahead and set a date for them that is early enough to avoid late fees.
Writing out all of your bills in the order they are due is not only a helpful way to organize payments, it’s also a great way to update your monthly budget and calculate just how much you are spending.
2. Pay On Time
This should be a given, but too often people forget or simply can’t afford to pay a bill on time. Don’t make this mistake. Always stay ahead of your bills and pay either before the due date or at worst case, on the due date. Going over the due date, even with a small bill, can result in damage to your credit, your account and future accounts.
There are many companies and services that now allow for automatic drafts to be deducted from your bank account. You may not want to automatically schedule out ALL of your bill payments, but getting as many of them set up on auto-draft as possible will really go a long way to keep you organized.
Sometimes there are even rewards for setting up auto-draft, like lower interest rates or discounted payments! Just make sure you are on top of the draft dates (see step #1) so that you don’t get caught off guard.
Did you know that many of your bills can be paid directly from your bank’s online banking center? If you have online bill payment capabilities with your bank, try to put as many of your bills into this system. Not only will it provide a centralized portal to make your payments, it also keeps you right in front of your balance so you always know how much money is available.
5. Pay Online
This is an option if you can’t pay directly through your bank. Pay bills online, either directly through the billing company’s website or through a trusted 3rd party that accepts payments on their behalf.
Generally, paying online means the funds are deducted automatically so you don’t have to worry about being caught off guard by a check clearing several days later or something not getting processed manually. Paying online means you almost always have updated account information as well.
6. Shop Around
By staying on top of your bills, you also stay on top of how much you are being charged for different goods and services. If you notice your cable bill has gone up, first verify that the charges are correct and then make a decision to either contact your provider or shop other companies’ rates. You may find a better service with a better rate.
Staying on top of bills doesn’t have to be akin to climbing Mount Everest. Stay organized, stay aware and stay ahead of any surprises. Check out our Clayton Studio blog for more home investment tips!