Bills are an unavoidable thing, and when life gets busy, it can be easy to forget what’s due when. From mortgages to cellphone bills to car payments and everything in between, it can be a lot to track. But if you’re not on top of paying expenses on time, it can cost you big in penalties and late payment fees. We share our best tips for how to pay bills on time.
How to Pay Bills on Time
While it may seem like a daunting process, organizing your finances and budget is key to paying bills on time. The first step is to make a list of every bill. Even if it’s already on automatic or recurring payment, it’s important to know what you’re paying and when. Creating a list will help ensure no bill falls through the cracks and ends up on your credit report.
Tip: Use a spreadsheet or budgeting app that allows you to sort and categorize your bills. Be sure to add due dates and when the payment will get deducted from your account to your list.
Set up Automatic Payments
When possible, setting up automatic withdrawals from your bank account ensures you won’t forget to make a payment. Say goodbye to the sticky notes and calendar reminders and say hello to automatic payments. Be sure to check your bank account routinely to ensure there are no errors in what was deducted.
Modify Due Dates
Are your bills due at different times of the month? You may be able to modify when they are due. For tracking purposes, it can help to have a few days each month designated for bills. For instance, each month you know the mortgage, credit card payment and car loan are due on the 1st, and the water, electricity, cellphone and internet are due on the 15th.
Make Good Use of Your Calendar
When automatic payments aren’t possible or the best solution, go back to the basics and make good use of calendar reminders or alerts. Setting recurring reminders can be a helpful reminder you only have to set once.
Display Paper Statements
Out of sight out of mind can be problematic when it comes to paying bills on time. Mailed bills can easily become lost in the stack of junk mail. Designate a bulletin board or a file organizer specifically for paper statements and place it in a very visible place in your home. Even passing by it daily, your subconscious will remind you to address the bills.
For manual payments, setting up a system you follow each month can keep you on track.
Once you land on a system that works for you — stick with it. Simple changes like these can help you figure out how to pay your bills on time. Your Farm Bureau agent or advisor can also help you get your financial house in order. Connect today!