When it comes to organizing and paying bills on time, there are several things you need to know to make the process easy, and not hurt your credit score. So in this article, you’ll learn various aspects of bill paying including prioritization, automatic payments, online paying, and tracking due dates. After reviewing and implementing these strategies, you should never again have an issue with paying bills on time.
1. Prioritize What Gets Paid First
The vast majority of us have a limited amount of money that we can spend every month. Oh sure, some people have a little more wiggle room than others. But it all depends on what expenses have to be covered. This is why it’s wise to prioritize which bills get paid first. Take a moment to sort your bills and expenses between “needs” and “nice to haves”.
Our most basic needs are shelter, water, food, and security. And of course, our family’s needs come first, right? So the most important bills are for things like rent/mortgage, utilities, and water. Food isn’t a formal bill, but it might as well be.
If you need to free up more money from your income to cover important bills, then cut back on “nice to have” luxury items such as your cable bill. There are probably cheaper alternatives for most of these items.
For example, read this article on How to Eliminate Your Cable Bill.
2. Make Sure Your Bills are Accurate
Inaccurate billing occurs more often than you might think. But you shouldn’t have to pay more than you owe, right? So look over your bills carefully and contact the billing company immediately if you notice something out of whack.
Also, if you’re currently receiving paper bills that habitually show up late where you live, then switch to the electronic versions. This is because late arriving paper bills could result in you paying the bill after the due date. That’s not good because some late payments will hurt your credit score.
3. Set Up Automatic Bill Paying
With this arrangement, money will be automatically withdrawn from your bank account on a specific date and sent directly to the utility, phone, credit card, or other company you’ve designated. The great thing about this type of bill paying is that you’ll never have to worry about late payments.
Setting up automatic billing is easy to do. Just ask the billing company if they have a program to handle automatic payments. I do this for several of my bills including my mortgage and utilities. So far I’ve found it to be very safe and secure.
4. Pay Bills Online Through Your Bank Account
This is a little different than the automatic payment set up. In this case, you would log into your bank account over the Internet and utilize their bill paying feature. Some people like to pay their bills this way because it gives them more control.
For this strategy, you would log into your bank account and manually enter the exact amount you want sent to the billing company. This can also be good if you keep your bank account balance very low and want to pay the bills only after you make a deposit.
To set up this type of bill paying arrangement, just talk to the customer service department at your bank. It’s pretty easy to get going.
5. Track the Due Dates for Your Bills
By knowing when each of your bills is due, you’ll have a better idea of how and when to best use your money.
You don’t have to pay all of your bills at the same time if your cash is tight. Plus, tracking the dates will help to ensure all bills get paid on time so that your credit score is not adversely impacted.
So that’s it. You now have 5 strategies for effectively managing and paying bills on time. As mentioned above, they include prioritizing your expenses, checking bills for accuracy, setting up a bill paying method that works for you, and tracking due dates. Try them and you’ll quickly find that bill paying will stop being a hated chore.