Paying bills on time is very important. Paying bills late can affect your credit and can also accrue late fees. This is a guide about paying bills on time.
When I get the mail each day, I immediately sort it and discard what I can. I do not hold bills to be paid later. I immediately "pay" them using the internet. I go to the website of the company and choose the option to pay my bill. Then, I change the date from the current day's date to the one I want the money to come from my checking account. This is almost always the due date!
This method reduces paper clutter, postponement, late charges, etc. I am a Senior citizen and have used many different methods, but to date this is the best one yet! I am able to shred the bill and not have it laying around the house.
By Carol from Wyoming, PA
I too pay my bills online and I greatly appreciate your additional ideas. I use Quicken for my check/payment register and put the confirmation number in the memo line to keep it handy. Thanks for your posts.
I pay my bills immediately online too. But I go to my bank and pay from there. There are never any additional charges I have confirmation numbers and my bank stands behind their bill paying. Works for me.
You can go even further with the 'green' thing and have your bills submitted on-line. You can then have your bank draft payment and you don't have to do a thing but record that the payment has been made. I do this will all my bills - electric, water, mortgage, insurance, credit card, items bought on credit (always interest free for limited time - paying in full before they can charge interest). Call each biller and make arrangements now. No worries about when a bill comes in and you may be out of pocket!
There are two different methods I use because I pay some bills with a check and others using my credit card. If paying with a check, when the bill comes in the mail, immediately upon opening it I write a check and get the envelope ready.
Prepare any bills/correspondences ahead of time that will have to be mailed in the future. Do not stamp any of the envelopes. Instead, write in small letters the date that the letters have to be mailed in the area where the stamp is placed.
What is the best way to keep up with your bills due dates? All of my bills come on different dates. When I call to inquire about a bill, I like to make note of the conversation and who I spoke to. I was keeping this information on a spreadsheet on my computer. When I am at work, I don't have access to a computer. Then sometimes I forget to even check the spreadsheet, because of other pending appointments. Any better suggestions?
When we ran a business before computers, I would keep a file folder holder on top of my desk. I had file folders for each week of the month and would put the bills for each month in their proper holder. Week 1 held bills for the 1st thru the 7th, week 2, 8th through the 14 and so on. I had no trouble keeping up with what was due with this system.
I use my google (gmail) calendar. I put the due date with a reminder alarm and when I pay the bill I add "PD" to the bill notation on that date. The 'reminder' comes up on my I-phone as well as my computer at home. So I can deal with it anywhere/anytime!
When a bill comes in we write mail by date on the front them and then line them up in sequence due and put in a letter holder on desk. Easy to glance at, and by putting more than due date on envelope, every payment arrives on time.
Tips and ideas to help you pay your bills on time.
I mention this only because some of the people who visit this site are coming because they are in the same situation.
If you go to a credit counselor, make sure they are certified and non-profit. Also make sure that they are not trying to get you to sign another loan on your house. Some outfits are simply mortgage companies. The people we work with (GreenPath) are certified, nonprofit and they are also certified HUD counselors. All of this makes it easier to deal with the creditors. The phone calls have stopped. We shop at Aldi's for food and we shop at Thrift stores for over half of our clothing (I rarely find clothes for my tall son at thrift shops, the best I can do is clearance at landsend.com and oldnavy.com. I can never find his size at brick and mortar stores.)
1st of month House payment
10th of the month insurance payment
This really helps keep track of auto debits because it is easy to screw up your balance if you forget that an auto debit posted. Also, when you pay regularly and get into a rhythm like this it becomes easier to know how much money you are going to need later in the month so you know when to quit spending.
First make you a calender from your PC.
Write down your bills when due.
Only use this calender for your bills.
Each bill you pay mark off your calender.
Take you a long envelope Mark it with the months date on it keep your receipts in it.
Note: If you would miss a bill carry it over to next month.
Hope this helps...Good Luck
I use my calendar on my computer. When i receive a bill i mark it right on my calendar and i have the option of sending a reminder to myself days before it is due. It will e-mail me or send a pop up on my screen on the date set to remind me.
It has worked wonderfully for me and when it is paid i high lite it in color so i know it is paid. It is always nice coming to that date on the calendar and seeing it high lited paid. It makes you feel good about yourself and it reminds you that you are on track.
My sister has used a plan that has helped me and my parents. All you need is a notebook.
First, write the month at the top. Under that, write "WEEK 1" then beside that write the amount of money that is going to be deposited. Underneath week 1 write down the bills that are due first, such as Bank notes or car notes or house payments. Make sure that they don't exceed the amount deposited (we actually make groceries a bill). I always do my biggest bills first so I am sure they are paid.
Then write "WEEK 2" and write the bills that are due next like electric, phone, and/or doctor bills. Continue through week 4.
This is really good because some months have 5 weeks so that fifth week is extra money. This really works for people who get paid weekly but my mom is paid monthly so she contributes her check to the first weeks big payments and gets that out of the way.
You may have to work with it a bit to get it the way you like it. This may not work for everyone but if it does, let me know!
August(big and centered)
Week 1--$1000(Husband) $500 (Wife)
Week 2--$500 (Wife)
I have been paying many of my bills over the phone with my debit card. It is a win-win situation. Not only do I save writing a check and saving a stamp...
Set up five file folders labeled Week One, Week Two, and so forth. As you open your mail each day file the bills into the week of the month it is due. Choose one day a week to pay your bills. Monday works best if you mail your payment, if paying online it doesn't matter which day you choose.
I sometimes open my mail and leave it in my car. The way I know that I haven't paid it yet is because it isn't folded in half. I can then go to my bill pay and take care of it immediately.
I had an idea to organize household bills. I purchased a large recipe box and index card dividers that were already numbered 1-31. I placed the dividers inside the box and placed each bill based on when it is due behind the respective divider.
This is my tip for paying bills on time. As soon as I receive a bill in the mail, or an email saying my bill is due soon, I write the due date and the amount on the calendar.
To help me pay my bills on time, I put them in a drawer that I open often. I write the date due on the envelope, and stack them with the earliest date on top. This helps me pay on time.
By tuppermern from Pittsburgh, PA
What I do is: I have a paper folded and tucked in my check
book so the top shows over the ledger and I write like:
Electric 6/18 7/18
Rent 6/18 7/18
Cable 6/18 7/18
Credit Card 6/18 7/18
I don't put the amount because I can look back in the ledger to see it. The size of the paper is sufficient to last the whole year and I write small so it's easy to read. It's easy and I can tell at a glance if and when I paid bills. (06/18/2009)
I'm going to have to set up a reminder system too. I pay my bills online, so as soon as I get it in the mail, I can set up the payment with my bank account. But I can't trust the mail anymore to get the bills to me. Too many times I've been getting other people's mail, so am sure mine gets lost too. I do have two bills set up to be paid directly each month, but really don't want to do that to any other accounts. I guess I will try some sort of chart so if I see blank space, that will alert me that no payment was made. (06/18/2009)
I'm visually impaired, so this is what works for me: As bills come in, I have hubby read the due dates to me. Then I can set reminders for myself using MS Outlook. For example, if I'm getting paid on the 16th and I know the mortgage is due that day, I'll set my reminder to say something like, "To do: pay mortgage." We have another couple of bills that fall due the last week of the month, so whatever payday falls latest in the month gets that reminder. Also, I earn more interest if I transfer most of my cash to savings until it's actually needed . Even though it's not a lot, it's found money, and every penny helps!
Like so many others, I'm cautious about paying bills automatically, since my paycheck can be very erratic. But this does work for me! (06/21/2009)
I do online banking and bill paying. When bills come in I open and place in front of PC in clear view and in day or so set them up in the bill paying section of online banking. You can either pay next day or set up to pay on future date. If you get online bills then when you check the amount and due date jot it down and immediately set it up to pay. The total set up for paying is then listed for you, you can subtract that and know what you still have to work with. It will show you what the amount and date of last payment also. Most online bill paying programs also let you set up reminders that works well and keeps you aware what is due. Just be aware that if they can't send payments electronically it will take days longer (up to 7 days on mine) to have them received by the sender.
I used to use a sheet a month in a steno book and check it off with info, but that was when I wrote manual checks and mailed them out. As the bills came in then I put them on top of the steno book as a signal bill needs to be paid so sit down and do it. If you write all checks manually you can do it early and the spot where the stamp goes you can write the date it needs to be sent out so you won't mail it out late, not the due date. Keeps stamps paper clipped to the book for fast mailing out. (06/23/2009)
I just noticed you are from Pittsburgh, PA. I grew up in Creighton, PA. Do you know where that is? I now live in TX, but still get excited to see someone from near my old hometown.
I have another way to get bills on time. If you have a small file folder with pockets place the bills there when they come in or you get electronic billing (jotting down amount and due dates for them). The dividers are labeled 1 thru 4, 8 thru 14, etc with last one taking to 31st. Place the bills in the file according to the date they should be mailed out, not due date. Then force yourself to set aside few minutes each day to look at current week like when you are having morning coffee or something that is regular part of day. Pull out the ones that need to be going out next day and get them either ready then or to do later on, but important part is to do them that day you pull them out. I used to do that too until the steno book seemed easier for me. (06/23/2009)
I have a large desk calendar on the wall near the computer and I write the due date on that date, I still seen to never pay them on time though! (06/23/2009)
Automatic online bill pay works from me. My phone is the same month to month. Our electric company has a program where you pay the same every month. I have them scheduled to go out every month. I've never paid a late fee. I set it up through my bank's website. Most banks offer these kinds of online services these days. (07/02/2009)
I keep a financial notebook. I use a master list of payments due each month and check it off as I pay the bills online. My financial notebook is divided into these sections: Payment Plans, Cash Flow, Loan Amortization, and Expenditure/Repair log. Payment Plans is a sheet for each payday for the year showing payments due from that check. I do a cash flow plan about 3 months out showing all income, payments and projected balances. I periodically check my real balance against my projection and adjust it. I print out loan amortizations for all loans and track them with each payment. I verify balances with the creditor every year. Finally, I post repairs and major expenditures in a log for easy reference. I know this sounds complicated but it really isn't after the initial setup. It's so handy to have everything in one binder. (07/10/2009)
I am looking for suggestions on paying bills and budgeting. Does anyone have any ideas on how to remember when bills are due and keep track of them?